I have tried this and my dogs relly loved it...and it was very easy (because I didn't go the route of grinding everything together as some people do.)
They were healty and happy and really looked forward to meal time (which is very unusual for my dogs!)
I researched and researched and finally decided to stop...because I read an article by scientists regarding raw diets of wolves and they each indicated that the reason wolves can eat bones without fear of splinters and damage (I am sure it happens, but who would know about it much?) is because they also eat skin and hair...and that the feces of the animals in the wild always show that the bone fragments are surrounded by hair and fur.
Well, I just finally decided that I didn't want to take a chance on harming my dogs with bone splinters...but they really did love it. (Advocates will say that raw bones don't splinter, but I just couldn't go forward in confidence.)
Hope this helps...basically, you just have to weigh the pros and cons and make a decision that works for you and your dogs...but your dogs will love it and they will be healthy...it is just may carry its own set of risks!
Most vets and worry warts like me are concerned about the fractured teeth, intestenal obstructions, perforations, bacterial infections of the abdomen, salmonella, other pathogenic organisms, worms, neospora caninum (that causes blindness and paralysis) and death caused by raw diets. For me it is just too risky!
There are many superior dog foods on the market that offer the benefits of not cooking all the nutrients out of their food, while still maintaining a exceptionally well balanced, nutritional diet for canines. I could never provide a complete diet and add the proper supplements like the companies that have spent generations researching just that. I am a prime example of what happens when I put the diet together, a little more butter here, what about dessert and overweight and out of shape--LOL! My dogs deserve better than my limited expertise in this area.
Hmmm . . . it seems I wasn't very clear (happens more than I like)! I'm not considering a BARF diet for Dakota; in fact I just bought him Eukanuba today--and he loves it, by the way! I meant to ask is it ok to give a raw bone (vs cooked, which can be brittle) to a dog, and if so, at what age?
I have been giving Dakota pressed bones and he really likes them--I'll stick with that. I've had problems with past dogs on dried knuckels, ears, hoofs, etc with throwing up so I'm reluctant to try that . . .