What are Bully Sticks?
Bully sticks are typically dried bull penises that are hung in shacks to be dry/tanned.
Why do dogs love Bully Sticks?
Well, why don’t you ask a dog? Because a dog’s bark is far worse than its bite! And it can’t answer back because it doesn’t have opposable thumbs to use a keyboard. But if we had to guess what dogs love about them, we’d say that they’re delicious, long-lasting, and unlike rawhide chews, they won’t make your dog sick.
Related: Best Bully Stick Holders
Are Bully Sticks bad for dogs?
Well, let’s put it this way: would you ever feed a bully stick to a cat? We wouldn’t recommend it. Dogs and cats have vastly different nutritional needs and sensitivities that we as humans can’t always predict or understand well enough to make safe assumptions. This is why it’s important to know exactly what you’re feeding your dog, and when in doubt, go with a well-known staple like a pig ear or a beef bone.
List of Bully Stick Alternatives
Sweet Potatoes or Yams
Sweet potatoes and yams are a great alternative to the common bully stick. They have a similar texture and provide a sweet taste that can keep a dog interested for hours. Another thing that’s great about them is that they’re one piece of food, meaning you won’t have any damages to the house from having to deal with little pieces of chews like you would do with bully sticks.
Who doesn’t love carrots? They’re great for your eyes, they’re crunchy and sweet, and they can satisfy a dog’s need to chew for hours on end.
You might have guessed that this one is true – all dogs go crazy for beef jerky. It has the same goodness as bully sticks without any of the bad things, and it’s a good way to get your dog to work for their food.
Kongs are a great chew toy/food dispenser that comes in all sorts of sizes; when they’re stuffed with peanut butter or yogurt they can keep dogs busy for hours. Make sure you buy the correct size when you’re getting one for your dog to avoid them eating it too fast.
Knee Cap/Shin Bone
This is a great alternative to the beef femur bone, which not many dogs are able to chew up properly. The knee cap or shin bone can be boiled to make it soft enough for your dog to chew on and will keep it busy for hours.
Pig ears are a great alternative to the beef femur bone and beef knuckle bones and can be purchased in most pet stores. Because they’re all-natural they don’t contain any of the harmful chemicals that bone scraps do, and they can even provide your dog with some needed calcium!
Antlers are a very hard material which makes them great for keeping a dog entertained while they learn to grind their teeth down. They don’t have much flavor so many dogs aren’t very excited about them, but if your dog likes chewing on the occasional bone, antlers can be one of the best choices you could make.
There are a variety of dental chews out there that help to keep your dog’s teeth clean and their breath fresh. These can be purchased at most pet stores, but make sure you know whether your dog needs it before you try one.
Most rawhides aren’t actually made from rawhide, so don’t be fooled by the name. They usually consist of tightly wound strands of collagen which can take hours to chew, making them a great alternative to rawhide chews like bully sticks. Just make sure that your dog doesn’t swallow too much at once; some dogs tend to swallow pieces whole and end up choking on them.
Bully Stick Rings
Bully rings are made up of tightly wound strands of natural beef muscle which not only keep your dog entertained while they’re chewing but also help to clean their teeth. The rings can vary in size and consistency, so make sure you know what you’re getting before you purchase one.
How can you make your own bully stick at home?
If you’re really into DIY you can try making your own bully stick. All it takes is a trip to the butcher for some beef trimmings and an oven, but be aware that there’s no telling what might actually end up in your “bully stick” so make sure you weigh the risks before trying this one!
We hope you’ve learned a few things from this article and that you will try your hand at some of these amazing alternatives to the classic bully stick. Good luck, and have fun!