The Food and Drug Administration is warning pet owners to avoid certain dog bones as they prepare to give their four-legged friends a holiday treat.
According to its recent consumer update, the FDA received 68 pet illness reports, involving about 90 dogs that experienced sudden illness after consuming various types of dog bone treats.
About 15 of those dogs reportedly died following dog bone consumption, according to the FDA.
"Giving your dog a bone treat might lead to an unexpected trip to your veternarian, a possible emergency surgery, or even death for your pet," Carmela Stamper, a veternarian with the FDA's Center for Veterinary Medicine, said in a statement.
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The reports mention products described as "Ham Bones," "Pork Femur Bones," "Rib Bones" and "Smokey Knuckle Bones" among the dangerous products. The bones are different from uncooked "butcher-type bones" because they are processed and packaged for sale as dog treats, according to the FDA.
"The products may be dried through a smoking process or by baking, and may contain other ingredients such as preservatives, seasonings, and smoke flavorings," the report states.
Pet owners reported a variety of problems such as bleeding, choking and vomiting after the treats were consumed.
The FDA also warned pet owners to keep "butcher-type bones" from chicken, turkey or steak out of their dogs' reach.
"We recommend supervising your dog with any chew toy or treat, especially one (it) hasn't had before," Stamper said.
Owners are also encouraged to notify the FDA if their pets have experienced any symptoms due to tainted dog bone treats.