My new favorite, or I should say Elsa's new favorite bone of choice is the oxtail. I have been giving my dogs different raw bones for years and have found that the longer narrow ones to be the best. I switched from knuckle bones to rib bones and now from ribs to tails. Elsa is not a huge raw fan; she has never gotten onto the flavor and texture so I need to work around this.
I get most of my meat at Trader Joe's and Sprouts; my bones come from Sprouts typically. I head right to the back to talk to one of the meat guys. "Do you have any uncut oxtail?" I ask. "Isn't there any out there?" the guy behind the counter asks as he heads out to check. They always check even when I tell them that there are indeed packages out there. I tell him that the pre-made assortment are no good for what I need; I need longer sections. He turns his head and asks "how long?" I reply "8 inches." "I'll check what we have" he replies.
He heads to the back, but just before going through the door he says "what are you doing with it?" "It's for my dog," I reply and he smiles. Then he says "wow, can I come to your house?" A common response when people hear how Elsa eats. I'm use to it and give my customary reply; "yep, she eats well." I don't know why, but it seems that I get a new person every time I order tail. I am always given the option of "which end?" and I take the skinny end.
I keep most of my meat and bones in my deep freezer. After the bone is thawed I heat up a pan with either coconut oil or olive oil in it and toss the bone in for a quick flash fry. I don't want the inside cooked, just a little mmmmmmm beefy flavor on the outside to get Elsa going on it. Because she doesn't prefer the flavor of raw; giving it this flash fry offers a "cooked" flavor that she likes.
She often takes forever to get going on a bone. When Luke was with us, he'd be on it immediately. She would sit and stare at hers for the longest time until finally getting to it. This time was different; with that yummy beefy flavor on the outside she got to it.
I like tails because they are mostly cartilage with very little bone. She eats the entire thing and it cleans her teeth amazingly.
It didn't take her long to finish the 8" section of tail. Plus she didn't get as much on her face that she can with other bones. So tails it is for us. I bought two pieces of tail on my last visit so the next one has more meat on it. The cartilage in the tail is much easier to digest than bone and her poop the following day was the proof. Poop perfection. Clean teeth, happy girl and happy Mom. :)