Elk Antler Dog Chews: Tasty Snacks for Your Canine

Treats By Meg Marrs 6 min read November 3, 2019 4 Comments

elk antler dog chews

If you’re looking for an all-natural, non-GMO, preservative-free treat for your dog, look no further than elk antlers chews.

Yes, you read that right: chews made out of elk antlers. It sounds kind of crazy right? Believe it or not, elk antlers can serve as fantastic dog chews for your four-legged pal. Give your dog one of these natural chews, and just watch how bananas he goes!

If you’re not familiar with these natural dog chews, we’ve compiled some of the most common questions and answers to help you get acquainted. We’ve also detailed some of the best selling elk antler chews available on Amazon to purchase for your pup.

Why Elk Antlers?

First and foremost, elk antlers are used as dog chews because there are actually quite a few of them laying around n nature!

Every year, wild elk shed their antlers due to seasonal and hormonal changes. It’s completely natural; it’s just what elk do, similar to how a snake sheds its skin. The shed antlers sit on the ground until something or someone comes along and picks them up.

Someone, somewhere discovered that these elk antlers could serve as a great alternative to plastic bones or mysterious dog chews made from unknown ingredients, and dogs agree!

Elk antlers are thick and strong, making them a fun challenge for dogs that love to chomp and chew. Elk antlers also tap into your dog’s deep-rooted animal instincts to investigate and chew on things found in nature.

Where Do Elk Antler Dog Chews Come From?

Premium elk antler chews (like the ones reviewed in this article), come from wild elk living in the United States. The elk roam in the wild, shed their antlers annually, and the antlers are collected by companies that package and market them as chews for dogs.

The best and most trusted sources of elk antler chews never harm or farm elk in order to make these treats. These companies simply know where the elk live (mostly in the northwestern parts of the US, like Colorado, Montana, Wyoming, and Oregon), and when to look for the shed antlers (in the winter).

elk antlers for dogs

It’s best to always confirm that the chews you purchase are from “naturally shed” elk antlers. This way, you know that the antlers came from happy, wild elk.

Once the antlers are collected, they are examined to determine their quality. “Premium” elk antlers are extremely hard and dark in color on the outside. The best quality antlers are then cut and split into a variety of shapes and sizes that dogs love to chew. It’s a simple process that results in a very clean, natural product for your pooch’s enjoyment.

Are Elk Antler Dog Chews Safe For My Canine?

The short answer? Yes! Elk antler dog chews that are made from premium quality antlers, and have not been artificially flavored or colored, should be perfectly safe for your dog to consume.

Just like any other bone or chew toy, you should take the elk antler chew from your dog when it gets very small, at which point it could become a choking hazard.

dog chews elk antlers

In terms of general safety, you should consider the alternatives: if you don’t give your dog something good to chew on, he may resort to chewing on something unhealthy and potentially dangerous.

A happy dog is an occupied dog, and elk antler dog chews are one great way to keep your dog challenged and engaged (this can also be done through treat-dispensing dog toys). A dog can wear himself out chewing on a good treat, which will keep him out of trouble and prevent him from getting bored.

Health Benefits of Elk Antler Chews for Dogs

You can feel great about giving these chews to your dog because elk antler are naturally full of nutrients which can benefit Fido! Antlers are made of bone-like material; they actually begin growing as layers of cartilage.

To be strong and healthy, cartilage and bones need a lot of nutrients, which is what you’ll find elk antlers packed nutrients like:

  • calcium
  • phosphorous
  • glucosamine
  • chondroitin
  • manganese
  • zinc

These, plus other vitamins and minerals found in the antlers, are great for a dog’s coat, bones, teeth, gums, and general health.

Will Elk Antler Dog Chews Gross Me (The Owner) Out?

We understand your fear – I think plenty of us have gotten a little squeamish around pig ear, cow ears, and bully sticks (if you don’t know what bully sticks are made out of, maybe it’s for the best)

Out of all the dog food and dog treat products on the market, elk antler chews are probably the least likely to gross you out. They are similar to a clean bone, are not sticky or greasy, and most do not have a strong odor.

Let your dog run around the house with his elk antler chew; he won’t even have terrible dog breath when he’s finished with it, and you may find that incorporating elk antlers into your dog’s diet can even cut down on how often you have to clean your dog’s teeth, since the antlers can naturally help scrub away plaque.

3 Top Elk Antler Chews: Reviews and Ratings

Now that we’ve covered the ins and outs of elk antler dog chews, let’s review some of the best recommended chews on the market!

Jim Hodges Grade A Quality Elk Antler Dog Chew

antler chews for dogs

Price: $$
Rating:

Jim Hodges Dog Training, located in North Carolina, promotes 100% naturally shed elk antlers from the USA. These split antlers are thinner than a standard chew. Key benefits include:

  • Good for small to medium sized dogs
  • Naturally-shed antlers, no elk farms
  • Non-greasy, non-sticky, and no smell

Pros

Pros: Reviewers who own puppies found the chews perfect for the “teething” stage and just the right size. 

Cons

 Cons: Customers with large dogs who ordered these smaller treats thought that they were too small and didn’t last long enough. Owners with heavier chewers may prefer whole antlers over the split variety (since the whole antlers tend to be tougher).

100% Natural Shed Grade A Elk Antler Dog Chews

natural elk dog chews

Price: $
Rating:

These elk chew treats are made by Buck Bone Organics, which states that their antlers originate from naturally-shed elk antlers from New Mexico to Montana. Key features include:

  • Single-ingredient dog treat
  • Available in a variety of sizes for all dogs
  • No chemicals or added preservatives

Pros

Pros: Happy customers report that these antler chews for dogs are mess-free and last a long time.

Cons

Cons: Reviewers with negative comments were upset with the quality of the antler, with some saying it was too hard for the dog to chew (which might indicate that these are especially good for tough chewing dogs). However, other owners found the antlers too easy to break apart, so it likely depends on  your dog’s chewing strength.

Best Bully Stick Grade-A Split Elk Antler Dog Chew

elk chews for dogs

Price: $
Rating:

These antler chews from Best Bully Sticks are sourced from elk in the Rocky Mountains. They come in size Medium (5 to 6 inches) and Large (6 to 7 inches).

  • Hand-selected, high-quality antlers
  • Odor-free and residue-free
  • Safe for older dogs and small dogs
  • Packaged in a resealable bag

Pros

Pros: Reviewers agree that you get a great sized antler chew for the price.

Cons

Cons: Some reviewers found that these antlers splintered and broke easily, but most were satisfied.

Have you ever given your dog antler chews for a snack? Did he or she enjoy them? Share your experience in the comments!

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Written by

Meg Marrs

Meg Marrs is the Founder and Director of Marketing at K9 of Mine. She is a lifelong canine enthusiast and adores dogs of all shapes and sizes! She loves iced coffee, hammocks, and puppy-cuddling!

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4 Comments

Stephan

Hi Meg, your post has a lot of information that is not quite accurate. First of all, the lead photo is of a European stag antler, not an elk. You also note that elk live in the Northwest part of the USA but Oregon only has a very small herd of Roosevelt elk. Most of the largest herds of elk are as you note Colorado, Wyoming, Montana but also Utah, Nevada and Arizona. The next photo looks to be a caribou due to the front shovels and crowns which elk do not have. Finally, you note that the best time to find sheds is in winter but that is not the case. Bulls start to shed their antlers in early May in Utah and Nevada and into the months of June in the higher country of Colorado and Wyoming. Lastly, the companies you have chosen as your top 3 are notorious for supplying low grade antler that is sun bleached and cracked as well as a lot of farmed antler. There are a number of smaller craft suppliers such as Mountain Dog Chews, Summit Antler Chews and RidgeRunner Antlers that provide a far superior product.

Reply
Tina

Thank You Stephan for the additional helpful information.

Reply
Alice Dayson

The Buck Bone Organics elk antler dog chew is my favorite! I love giving these to my dogs. These do seem to last the longest of all the ones I’ve given them. I like the company and it’s good to see these on your list of elk antler chews. Antler chews are way better than pig ear dog chews and bully sticks in terms of smell and grossness. However, some have said that elk antlers, in general, are still bad for a dog’s teeth. My dogs have never had any issues with them and I prefer them over regular beef bones because they have more nutrition in them.

Reply
Greg G

There are so many brands out there of elk antlers nowadays. I’d like to see someone review like the top 10 “non paid” search results on Google and maybe 10 from Amazon as well to really see the differences and figure out who has the best elk antler.

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