The Benefits of Beef Tendons for Your Canine Companion

Are you on the lookout for a natural and nutritious chew that can keep your dog entertained and provide health benefits? Look no further than beef tendons! In this article, we will explore the world of beef tendons for dogs, uncovering how they are made, their safety, and the potential benefits they offer to your furry friend.

What Are Beef Tendons?

Beef tendon chews are completely natural and dried beef tendons, typically sourced from the Achilles tendon of cows. These tendons, which would otherwise be discarded or used in dog food, are harvested and transformed into long-lasting chews for dogs. Ranging from six to ten inches in length, beef tendons can be air-dried, dehydrated with heat, or even wood-smoked for added flavor. Some may have unique shapes, twists, or turns that provide extra benefit for teeth cleaning.

The Benefits of Beef Tendons for Dogs

Beef tendons offer a range of benefits for your furry companion. As low-fat and nutritious chews, they contribute to improved dental and mental health, while also containing compounds that enhance joint health.

Mental Health

The tough texture of beef tendons provides dogs with hours of chewing time, keeping them engrossed and entertained. Through the act of constant chewing, endorphins, natural compounds that promote happiness and relaxation, are released. This makes beef tendons especially beneficial for dogs prone to worry, separation anxiety, or in need of distraction during thunderstorms or fireworks.

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Dental Health

Chewing on beef tendons helps to improve your dog’s dental health. The abrasive action against their teeth reduces the buildup of plaque, resulting in cleaner and healthier teeth.

Joint Health

Rich in connective tissue, beef tendons are packed with protein and contain glucosamine and chondroitin. Scientifically proven to enhance joint cartilage health in dogs with osteoarthritis, these compounds stimulate the production of glucosaminoglycans (GAGs) and improve joint fluid through the production of hyaluronic acid. However, while beef tendons contain some glucosamine and chondroitin, joint supplements are a more reliable option for providing a clinically relevant dose of these compounds.

Nutritional Information for Beef Tendons

In addition to their various health benefits, beef tendons are also highly nutritious. With high protein content and low fat, they are an excellent choice for overweight dogs. The average guaranteed analysis of beef tendons includes essential protein to support muscle strength and the synthesis of DNA and hormones.

Feeding Guide

Given the numerous advantages, you may want to incorporate beef tendons into your dog’s diet regularly. Medium and large dogs can enjoy a beef tendon daily, while smaller dogs should not exceed five tendons per week due to their larger size. However, you can easily break or saw the tendons in half to provide smaller dogs with a daily chew.

Disadvantages & Risks of Beef Tendons for Dogs

Fortunately, there are minimal risks associated with beef tendons. Nevertheless, it is important to remove the tendon once it becomes small enough for your dog to swallow it whole, particularly if your dog tends to gulp food. This precaution helps prevent choking. Beef tendons are easily digestible, provided they reach the stomach, where the acids break them down for safe passage through the digestive system. With the exception of dogs with beef allergies, beef tendons are suitable for dogs of all breeds, sizes, and most ages.

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Alternatives to Beef Tendons

If you’re intrigued by beef tendons but still unsure, consider these alternatives:

  • Ostrich tendons: Similar to beef tendons, ostrich tendons are high in protein and low in fat. They withstand vigorous chewing from even the most powerful jaws, and as they soften, the fibers act like floss to enhance dental health.

  • Bully sticks: Made from dried beef penis, these sticks are an acquired taste for humans but a favorite among dogs. They provide excellent chewing time and contribute to dental health, although they are high in calories and not suitable for overweight dogs.

  • Chicken feet: For an alternative that promotes joint health, try chicken feet. They contain the tendons from the lower leg, delivering natural glucosamine and chondroitin. However, they are often consumed quickly and may not keep your dog occupied for long.


Beef tendons are a natural, nutritious, and long-lasting chew option for your canine companion. With their ability to improve dental and mental health, along with potential benefits for joint health, they are a valuable addition to your dog’s diet. Next time you’re searching for a safe and satisfying chew, consider beef tendons. To learn more about beef tendons and other options, visit Rowdy Hog Smokin BBQ.