Is It Good For Dogs To Chew On Sticks?

Table of Contents

Dogs love to chew, it’s a natural instinct for them. However, not everything they want to chew on is safe for them. And while sticks might seem like a safe, fun, free toy for your pup, they can be quite dangerous.

So let’s look deeper into why you shouldn’t let your dog chew on sticks.

Are Sticks Safe For Dogs?

No. While not every time will cause a problem, the risks of allowing your dog to play with sticks are high and life-threatening to your furry best friend.


Choking on a stick, or pieces of a stick is the greatest risk for your dog if they are playing or chewing on a stick. Because sticks are not durable enough for a dog’s strong jaws. Most dogs have a PSI bite strength of between 300 and 400. Even large branches can’t withstand a powerful gnaw from a dog.

Small pieces can easily be broken and will shatter. Bark and wood alike can all get stuck in your dog’s throat. Even larger branches can break into pieces which can cause problems for your dog.


Another risk that many people don’t think about when they allow their dog to chew on sticks is the risk of bacteria. Because sticks are natural they may seem safe, but there are some dangers lurking on the surface. Chemical treatments aside, there can be a lot of bacteria that can be harmful to your dog.

However, things like the rabies virus can live outside the body in saliva for a few hours. Meaning if a rabid animal chewed on the same stick, your dog could potentially come into contact with the virus. Other things such as fungus can make your dog very ill.

Woods like cherry, apple, yew, and walnut are all also toxic to dogs and can cause severe problems.

Digestion Obstruction

Just because your dog was able to swallow something it doesn’t mean that they can pass it. Because wood doesn’t digest, pieces of the stick can easily become lodged in the digestive tract. Outside of choking, it can block up the intestinal tract.

Furthermore, dogs who have an obstruction may still pass stool. If your dog has diarrhea after you assume they’ve consumed a stick, you’ll need to take your dog to the vet to ensure they don’t have a blockage.

Punctured Organs

It’s picture-perfect when your dog is happy, running with a stick in their mouth. However, this can be deadly. If they fall, or another dog runs into them, a stick can easily puncture their mouth, throat, or worse. These injuries can take many weeks to heal.

Even if your dog doesn’t damage their mouth with a stick, chewing on and swallowing pieces of the stick can cause internal damage and puncture the digestive tract. Sticks can even cause damage to your dog’s teeth.


No. Wood and sticks, while natural, are not digestible for dogs. That is part of the reason why sticks are dangerous for dogs to chew. If you think that your dog has swallowed a stick you should keep a close eye on your dog for the next 24 hours.

If you notice any bleeding or vomiting, or if they don’t pass the stick, you will want to go to the vet immediately. Otherwise, if everything seems fine or your dog passes it, you can chalk it up to a lesson learned.


But dogs love to play and chew, so what are some things that you can give your dog that are safe? And what should you use to play their favorite game of fetch with? Here are a few great, and safe ways to keep playtime fun and safe.

Bully Sticks

Bully sticks are the perfect alternative to giving your dog a stick. They are natural, safe, and durable. Bully sticks also have some delicious benefits such as extra protein and essential amino acids.

Shop Natural Cravings USA for high-quality, natural chews that are perfect for your dog.

Beef Trachea

Beef trachea isn’t as good for a game of fetch, but they are perfect for outdoor playtime. Because natural chews can sometimes have a meaty smell, these chews are excellent for hide-and-seek games outdoors with your pup.


Tennis balls can have some risks if you allow your dog to chew on them. However, for a good old-fashioned game of fetch, a tennis ball is perfect. There are a lot of different types of tennis balls on the market. Some are even mint flavored for fresh dog breath.


Specifically one made for dogs. Jawz frisbees by Hyperflite are great for dogs. Cheap plastic frisbees can crack and shatter making the dangerous. You’ll want a softer frisbee. While your dog shouldn’t chew on these like chew toys, they are fairly durable. Perfect for summer fun, or just some outside fetch time.


Chewing on sticks can be a dangerous activity for dogs. Not only is it a choking hazard, but it can also cause cuts and splinters in their mouths and throats along with other internal damage. In addition, the bacteria and fungi found on the sticks can lead to serious infections. Therefore, it is important to ensure that your dog does not chew on sticks as this could lead to serious health issues.

Shop Natural Cravings USA for an all-natural bully stick that is the perfect alternative to dangerous sticks. 


Shopping Cart