Nylabone Warning: Are Nylabone Chew Toys Safe For Dogs?

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Nylabone with warning messageI was rushing my dog to the emergency veterinarian. All I knew is that she had ingested part of her Nylabone chew toy. I just wanted her to feel better. Was it as simple as letting it pass through her? Did she need medication? Surgery? I had no idea what was in store for us.

This has not actually happened to me, but many pet owners have. These accidents are creating concern about these toys, prompting pet owners to ask a lot more questions.

Are Nylabones safe for dogs? When should you throw them away? What happens if they chew some of it off? We’ll answer these questions and tell you about some of the Nylabone warnings that you should be aware of.

Nylabone Non-Edible Chew Disclaimer

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Before diving in too deep on this subject, let’s read the disclaimer that Nylabone had a few years back about their non-edible chews. It is important to read the warnings for any toy or chew that you purchase for your dog so that you are aware of the potential hazards.

“NON-EDIBLE CHEW PRODUCTS are made with plastic, rubber, or nylon. They are NOT intended for consumption. During normal chewing, tiny bristle-like projections are raised that help clean teeth. If these tiny pieces (no larger than a small grain of rice) are ingested, they should pass through. A dog should not be able to break off larger pieces of any Nylabone® Non-Edible Chew.

If you think that your dog swallowed a large piece of a Non-Edible Chew, take the chew away and contact your veterinarian for advice. No dog toy or chew is totally indestructible. Frequently inspect any chew before giving it to your dog to make sure it’s whole and intact, with no missing pieces. Replace a Non-Edible Chew when knuckle ends are worn down, or if it becomes too small to chew safely. Nylabone Chews and Toys should not be boiled, placed in a dishwasher, washing machine, or convection or microwave oven.”

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Nylabone Safety Tips

While this exact language no longer appears on the Nylabone website, the core values expressed here remain the same. Follow these three pillars of safety when using a non-edible Nylabone chew or any dog toy.


Always keep an eye on the quality of the toy to make sure all parts are intact and small pieces aren’t breaking off during play sessions. You should check the toy before, during and after each playtime. If it appears to be breaking down significantly or the ends have reduced in size significantly, you should consider taking it away and giving your dog a new toy to enjoy.


Just like you would not leave a small child to play on its own, you should not leave your dog alone during playtime either. If a piece breaks off and presents a choking hazard, you will want to be on hand to take it away and redirect your dog’s curious energy.

Proper Care

Since this product is made of nylon (essentially food-safe plastic), you will not want to subject it to harsh heat, chemicals or other abuse. Keeping it intact and safe means maintaining a healthy storage location. It’s probably also best to keep these toys for inside play.

Find a safe Nylabone for your dog

Help! My Dog Ate Part Of A Nylabone! What Do I Do?

If your dog has eaten a large piece of a Nylabone, you need to go to the vet immediately! The components of these bones are challenging for your dog to digest and can cause many problems, not only to your pup’s health but also to your bank account. It’s critical to watch your dog and check his toys each time before giving them to him to make sure the toys are still in good condition and that there aren’t any pieces missing.

If your dog swallows a large portion of Nylabone or other chew toy, go to your vet’s office immediately for an exam. He may have to get an x-ray, stay overnight, undergo expensive emergency surgery or worse.

For the extreme case, where playtime turns into an accident, you will want to be prepared with pet insurance to avoid paying hundreds or even thousands of dollars in vet bills. This way, you can focus your attention on helping your dog instead of worrying about how you are going to pay for everything.

Seeking an alternative? Read our reviews of chew toys for power chewers.

Are Nylabones Safe For Dogs?

There are many things you’ll want to know about Nylabone safety before purchasing a treat or toy. If you keep in mind these simple safety checks, then your dog should be able to enjoy these chew toys safely.

What Size Of Nylabone Should I Get?

Nylabones come in different sizes, so make sure you are purchasing the correct size for your pup. You don’t want to get a Nylabone made for a puppy and give it to your 90 pound Labrador Retriever. She’ll have that thing torn up so fast that you’ll be on your way to the vet immediately!

When Should I Replace My Dog’s Nylabone?

You should replace your dog’s non-edible Nylabone chew when the knuckle ends wear down or if it becomes too small to chew safely (if it is so small that your pup could swallow it, throw it out).

Can Puppies Have Nylabone Edible Chews?

Nylabone edible chews are best for dogs with permanent teeth (not young puppies). We recommend you talk to your veterinarian before giving a new type of chew toy or treat.

What Is Your Dog’s Chewing Strength And Style?

There are also different types of Nylabones available for different chewing strengths and styles. So make sure you know your pup and what style you should get. You can always address your concerns with your vet and see what they think is best.

Read our heavy chewer dog subscription box reviews

Choosing The Right Nylabone

This video can help you learn more about Nylabone and which type is best for your pup.

What has your experience been with Nylabone chew toys?

About The Author:

Michelle holds an MBA from Vanderbilt University and has worked in marketing at Bank of America, Mattel and Hanes. She is the proud co-founder of Canine Journal and a dog lover through and through. Since the day she was born, she has lived in a home full of dogs. Her adult home is no exception where she and her husband live with Bella and Lily, their two adorable rescue pups. In addition to her love for snuggling with dogs, she also has enjoyed working professionally in the canine field since 1999 when she started her first dog-related job at a dog bakery.

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My Boston Terrier is currently at the vet In critical condition diagnosed with acute pancreatitis. I just received a picture of the end of a large nylabone that my girl pooped out! She found it in a friends yard that we were visiting. Waiting now to see what’s next, I’m sure the bill is going to be tremendou,
Nylabones are one of the only chews my dog can’t destroy. I think Nylabones are the BEST chews available. They are so much safer than chews made of real animal products (real animal products contain dangerous chemicals/preservatives and are extremely chokable). So many people are spreading rumors about Nylabones being dangerous, but NO toy/chew is completely indestructible, and anyone who allows their dog to ingest large pieces or chip teeth on this product is a very bad pet owner. As the human, YOU are responsible for keeping your dog safe and healthy, which means that you have to choose the right size and chewing style for your furry friend. If you give a baby Chihuahua an adult chew for a dog 70+ lbs, of course she will chip teeth. If you give a St. Bernard a bone for a dog under 25 lbs, he will most likely choke on it. If you select the wrong bone for your dog, don’t blame the company. You know your dog best, and if you suspect that he/she will get injured chewing a toy, it’s simple. JUST DON’T GIVE HIM THE TOY.
Jacque Mazutis
After 2 months of stress for us and our dog, all the possible tests, X-rays, and an ultrasound ~ I will say $12,000 Later the vet removed a part of this bone ~ Do not gove your pet this bone!!!
Joanne Wendland
Sorry to hear what your dog, and you sent through! Many people feel the Nylabones are safe. I will now warn others.
Nylabones have been great for our golden retriever. He’s our fourth golden. First not to chew baseboards or furniture legs and think we owe it to these bones (and training and exercise!). All of ours were notorious for destroying most toys in seconds. And for whatever reason, most of the “indestructible“ that weren’t destroyed didn’t hold their interest.
I feel for all of the pet parents whose dogs ingested pieces of the Nylabone and fell ill or required a vet visit. We had one dog who obsessively swallowed any/every thing he could fit in his mouth. Was heartbreaking and expensive- 6 separate surgeries for different items ingested.
However I am a bit baffled by some of these posts. The nylabones do come with a disclaimer to observe how the bone is wearing down. As many have remarked, there’s no safe chew toy. Do your research up front, and be an engaged parent by observing how your dog interacts with the toy. If you just buy it, unwrap it, give it to your pup and forget about it, you just invite problems. Would you give a toddler a new toy he can fit in his mouth and not keep an eye on him?
Michael Wirth
Our dog had a small Nylabone, chewed it moderately. She then vomited in 4 places, then a left a two foot long trail of bloody vomit. A truly “safe” American made product. At least they didn’t add melamine like the Chinese… or do they?
dana Stallworth
I bought a 9.00 Nylabone from Target in Houston Tx and one Nylabone was edible and the other was a chew toy.
In about 10 minutes my dog’s mouth was bleeding from the chew toy (it was the Big Chicken Flavor one) I
immediately took it away from her (4 year old Doberman) so I wanted y’all to know I am not happy with this
product….I am looking at it and the ends look like razors….These are very dangerous to dogs. This is
my first problem with any Nylabones…This is my 5th dog….Any suggestions? Do you give coupons for other
products? Please advise.
Thanks so much
Dana Stallworth
Kimberly Alt (Admin)
If you’re looking for a Nylabone alternative for your super chewer, here are some ideas:
BarkBox Super Chewer
Indestructible Dog Toys
Anita Murley
We bought our Boston Terrier one of these about two hours later he started vomiting and diarrhea so we r watching him I’ll let you know more later very worried about my baby
So why the heck wouldn’t you take him to the vet if you’re so worried? It’s illegal to deny animals Vetrinary care where I come from and if he is unable to keep food down he likely has a blockage if he bit off a piece. However you didn’t say if he bit off any pieces or not. Just chewing on the bone itself won’t make him start puking unless he’s actually consuming the pieces he breaks off…if he didn’t break off any pieces it could be a number of reasons he is sick. Your best bet, GO TO THE VET!
I’ll just add to the discussion by saying we’ve had lots of “power chewers” in our rescue dog family, and Nylabone (esp. dinosaur) has been a helpful chewing alternative. Only problem I’ve had was with a large Kong, which was chewed into pieces, one of which stuck in his small intestine and required a $5,000 life-saving surgery. After that, we severely limited all toys that he was able to ingest (Kongs and all squeakers), but the Nylabones were indestructible.
Dorothy Clemmer
My dog, a Staffy, had diahrea for over 10 days. I am very suspicious of the Nylabone. It was a 3D type…bacon flavored. Dog didn’t bite off big pieces however all the little nubs had been consumed and more. I only give it to him for 1 minute at a time now.
If it has already been worn down on the edges you shouldn’t be giving it to him anymore AT ALL. Not even for one minute! I am certain the price tag of the treat is worth far less than paying for surgery of blocked intestines and a responsible dog owner should always ask themselves, is this cheap toy really worth the risk to my beloved pet? There are many safer alternatives for chewing. Why not try cow windpipes, aka cow trachea? I give them to my dog and they’re totally digestible and much safer than something that can splinter and damage your dog internally.
My 4yr old Kees just had one of his large upper molars removed yesterday, because he broke the tip off down to the pulp on a Nylabone made for power chewers! He has always has these bones and loves to chew on them. I watch him carefully and he never injests any of it, but within 2 minutes of chewing the other day, I heard a snap! At 4yrs old he got an otherwise healthy tooth pulled at the cost of over $600. His molar on the other side is also fractured. He is in pain. He doesn’t want to eat. He mopes around and doesn’t act or look like himself. I am so upset and devastated! There is NO disclaimer on the product that mentions anything about potentially damaging teeth. On the contrary, it mentions how good they are for cleaning teeth! I have tried to email the company on their website, but once I fill out the form and hit send, it does nothing. I cannot locate an email address anywhere for the company, so if someone has one, please share. I have always been a dog person and my dogs have always been treated to Nylabones…well, not anymore! I will be boycotting this company and not just the Nylabone brand. My friends and family will do the same. I encourage you to spread the word to your friends and family and let them know how fake this company’s concerns are for our pets. I cannot even reach out to them, except by calling the 800 number. That’s great, if I wanted to sell the product or buy something, but it does me no good when I want to file a complaint! Unfortunately, there are so many pet toy companies out there that are just as bad or worse, so please, before replacing your Nylabones with other toys, do your research! We need to take action ourselves to reduce the statistics and not rely on companies to do the right thing. If given the chance, I would love to ask their CEO how he would feel if I gave a plastic Nylabone to his son or daughter and had them naw on it until they broke teeth or injested parts of it! After all, my dog is like my son and is a part of my family, so why shouldn’t he be treated as one? How safe would he feel they are then???
Justin Tame
Nothing personal here but does everything need to have a disclaimer? I mean just in inspection you can tell that they are darn near rock solid. Common sense knows they can possibly break teeth on them. The problem is the issue of if you don’t give them something very hard, they will destroy it quick and also come with the risk of intestinal blockages. Then if you give them something hard you then have the issue of possibly breaking a tooth etc. There truly is no risk free toy for dogs. There really truly isn’t. But I’ll take my chances on a tooth with the nylabone that she’s been chewing for 5 years over intestinal surgery due to blockage any day of the week. The only truly safe toy is no toy. And I’m not about to let her be bored and start chewing other items that she shouldn’t be, digging and acting out due to boredom, etc… I appreciate your concerns and sorry about your doggies bad luck/ misfortune. Sorry you were likely in the small group of bad nylabone statistics.
When we first got my lab mix a nylabone she ate half of it almost immediately. We took it away. That said we soon realized there are different strengths and that first one was inappropriate for a strong chewer. We get the “power chew” about once a month and have no issues at all.
Justin Tame
My pitbull been chewing them four 4-5 years. Best thing I’ve ever found for her. There’s risks with any toy. The only true safe toy is no toy. But I’m not going to do that. I’ll take a small risk of broken tooth any day over risk of intestinal blockages any day of the week. No matter what you get there’s always a risk involved unfortunately. Ive found these nylabones to be the best for my doggie. I replace them if needed and take them away if damaged.
Trudy falter
I thought they were quality made chew toys until my pit/pit mastiff started chewing small pieces of the plastic off at a time, does not digest well at all, so no more
Debra Weinsberg
My bulldog puppy swallowed a piece of nylabone and required surgery. He fell extremely ill and they could not figure out what was wrong because you cannot see the nylabone with an X-ray. He almost passed away before they decided to get him in for emergency exploratory surgery. They found a large piece in his intestines. When all was said and done it was about $5600 and he made it. Luckily I had pet insurance which covered most off the cost. Nylabone took no responsibility nor did they care in my personal opinion . I will never give them a dime. You cannot watch every second a dog chews and they can swallow a piece without you even knowing or before you catch it. Not worth it!
Kimberly Alt (Admin)
Wow, how scary! So glad your dog is ok now! Do you mind me asking about your pet insurance experience? Which company do you have a plan through and have you been pleased overall with them?
Miriam Bland
Your post caught my eye and needless to say I am glad your puppy is well. Would you tell us what insurance you purchased and what is your overall experience? Thank you in advance.
Jacque Mazutis
Debra, I don’t understand why they would make a chew toy that causes such issues, we spent close to $12K with tests, X-rays and then surgery as you did and there is was a small bit of the end of the bone. We should be able to do something, the package should have a large red warning
Please avoid Nylabone. My year old American bulldog developed a serious allergic reaction to a chicken flavored Nylabone, small pieces of which he ingested. Not safe or healthy.
Robert L Gulley
Buy no more than one if you enjoy walking in your house with socks or bare footed. They feel like many tacks when stepping on one. With one it’s a good chance you may spot it before stepping on it. Especially with the elderly the ouch and odd shape will make senior citizens fall.
I have kept a steady supply of Nylabones laying around the yard and house for my dogs for years now without incident. From puppy to old age dogs have chewed and continue to chew on them without incident. I do always purchase the lager bones that are made for vigorous chewers. Eventually after months and months they wear them down to a nub. After reading this article I will now throw them out when they get small. My dogs have never had a problem eating these bones.
Justin Tame
I replace mine at any point I feel they are too small or become thin enough I feel they could bite off a chunk. Inspection is key. Mine been chewing them for 4 years with no issues. Best thing I’ve found. Anything else I get her she can destroy in 10 seconds, even the ones they say are indestructible. Anything else is a no go. Rubber products she demolishes, I won’t ever buy her tip rope toys anymore (too risky of intestinal blockages), and other items just too soft or destructive. Nylabone just right for my girl. Anything she does get off are very tiny fragments.
debbie Sinsofsky
Bought my dog a Nylabone yesterday, she is a big puppy and has been chewing the base boards in the house so I thought I would buy her a toy to chew in place of the base boards. I wish I had kept walking past the Nylabone products, this should come with a LIFE AND DEATH warning for a dog. What kind of a company makes a product for a dog that is a chew toy had a meaty taste( chicken, beef etc) that is not digestible, its a dog for heavens sake. Dogs eat everything, My dog ate half the puppy Nylabone when we showed the vet what and how much she ate he couldn’t believe his eyes…..
We took our poor puppy back to the vet this morning to be x rayed and monitored, on the way she vomited up about a piece of Nylabone about the diameter of a quarter, To date she is still at the vet and he is not sure how much is in her stomach we have to x ray her again tomorrow to see if any pieces still remain in her stomach if so she will need an operation to remove the pieces. WHAT A HORRIBLE PRODUCT THIS SHOULD BE OFF THE MARKET. I am going back to the store that sold this junk product to a)to return the 2nd Nylabone I bought and b)try to encourage them to remove this from the store, I have no idea what the vet is going to cost I am afraid to ask.
I am so sorry I did not read this forum before I gave the nylabone to her. I hope all the poor pets who are victims of this product have a speedy recovery.
Gave my blue healer a pig snout yesterday from feed store. It was consumed quickly.today diarrhea vomiting $257 trip to vet could have digestive blockage please avoid these at all cost !!
I came back from a few hours away, and my puppy ate half of his nylabone, after reading this article, I realized that I should have done my homework first, I will never purchase them again
Kirsten Young
Did your puppy eventually poop it out or did you need surgery?
I’m upset after reading the comments. I’ve let our new goldendoodle puppy have these bones. After noticing he had chewed one end I questioned how safe these must be… taking back to the store! This is a dishonest and we will not these again!
I’m glad I just researched this product. I was surprised my 4 month mini golden doodle was destroying this bone within her first chew session. I read the package and was confused about whether it was even meant to be edible or not. I was also confused if it was even meant for a puppy. The warnings & descriptions were so contradictory on the packaging. Something just did not sit right with me. How could I be letting my pet chew on something that smelled so good, was breakable and not meant to be eaten? I gave it to her Tuesday evening and just took it away Thursday morning cause it didn’t look safe anymore. One nub has been chewed off and the other is getting there. Looks like grizzle. Her gums are a bit bloody and sore looking at the side molars and two baby teeth went missing at the front. I feel terrible because it seems to have been an invasive way for her to lose them. After reading this article and other people’s concerns, it affirmed my weariness about this product at the first chew session. I can’t believe a spent $6 on such garbage. Those stories are scary. I hope she will be ok. I feel stupid for not listening to my gut feeling.
Don’t give them pig ears or snouts today went to vet after eating 1st pig ear. Nightmare!
Dennis Tarr
I am really surprised that a company like Nylabone will even sell these chewable toys. My 6 month old Golden Doodle ate 4/5th of his Nylabone before we read that it was not editable. I think there may be class action suit against this type of toy. It’s like buying a car and getting a disclaimer about accidents. I am really disappointed in our system that allows this type of toy to be sold.
Kirsten Young
Did you puppy end up pooping it out? Or did you need surgery?
Wow! I must say I am seriously disturbed by the comments I have read regarding the serious issues nylabone can cause. I actually had a vet recommend them 4 years ago. We use to give our German Shepherds soup bones until one broke a tooth. The vet said nylabone was safe to ingest. I should have done my own research & not taken the word of a professional. My 3 year old loves them but chews them to a nub,ingesting small pieces which the vet said would be harmles. I also did not realize they are made in China. My fault, didn’t read the lable. I don’t give my dogs ANYTHING MADE IN CHINA. After reading the comments I will never give my dog another nylabone. I am fortunate not to have had any serious issues. I will be checking out petstages for an alternative & doing my research first.
Do not buy this product. Not worth the risk, or vet bills. My dog ended up sick for days. If you want a healthy and happy pet, don’t do it. This company needs to take responsibility for their products and not market ANYTHING that Will HARM OUR PETS!!!
Frenchy swallowed large bone hole choking vomiting NEVER again will I give my dog an edible nylabone
Rachel Limpus
Horrible, horrible bones. They caused my dog to have emergency surgery due to ingesting a piece. Who’s makes non edible bones??? I shouldn’t have been so dumb to buy this product because it almost took my dogs life. NOT worth your time or money or stress because of surgery. NEVER buy this product, there are many other options that are way better.