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Split or Whole Organic Antler Dog Chews: Which Is Right for Your Dog?

Written by: Michelle Toma Olson

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Time to read 5 min

Every dog parent knows – dogs love to chew. Whether young or old, small or large, rambunctious or mellow, most pups find pleasure in gnawing on something, sometime, somewhere! Chewing helps our puppos to relieve anxiety and burn off energy; offers them a distraction during stressful times or a remedy for boredom; and gives them a sense of accomplishment with a healthy serving of plain old enjoyment.


Rather than let her find and destroy your favorite shoe, or nibble nervously on his own paw, giving your pup the right safe dog chew toy can provide a healthy outlet for that canine urge to chew. Organic antler dog chews , like the elk , reindeer and deer organic antler chews we offer at Farm to Pet, have become an increasingly popular choice for healthy dog chews, with dogs and their parents alike.


In this article, we will take a look at whether antlers are in fact safe for dogs and puppies to chew, why dogs like to chew on antlers in the first place, and if antlers have any benefits as organic dog chews. We will also explain the differences between whole and split organic antler dog chews to determine which is right for your furry friend.

Are Organic Antler Dog Chews Safe for Dogs?

Doodle outside with a Farm to Pet Whole Elk Antler.
Bentley with a Whole Elk Antler.

The short answer is yes, organic antler dog chews make a safe choice for dogs to chew. Their splinter-resistant, durable chewing surface gives a dog the satisfaction and sensation of chewing a bone or other chews without the dangers they can pose. Bones can crack or splinter, leaving sharp edges that can cut gums or even cause intestinal damage if swallowed. Similarly, rawhide chews are hard to digest, but soft enough to be broken easily by a prolific chewer and can become a choking or intestinal hazard. Conversely, antlers actually wear down as they are chewed, with the minerals and protein they are made of dissolving into ingestible powder form that not only provides nutrients but is easily passed.


Of course, pet parents must be vigilant when giving their dogs chews of any type, and every chewing session needs to be supervised. Although they can last for weeks and even months, antler dog chews should be checked regularly for signs of excess wear, cracks or splintering, and discarded and replaced as needed, especially if they get worn down to a size small enough to be swallowed.

Can Puppies and Senior Dogs Chew on Organic Antler Dog Chews?

Dachshund puppy with a Farm to Pet Reindeer Split Antler.
Udon with Reindeer Split Antler.

Fortunately, dogs of most ages can enjoy chewing on organic antler dog chews, with some important considerations coming into play.

  • Organic Antler Chews for Puppies: Puppies shouldn’t be given any hard chews until they lose their milk teeth, typically after six months of age. Even though their jaw strength is still building, hard chews can loosen or break a puppy’s milk teeth, causing discomfort, bleeding or worse.
  • Organic Antler Chews for Senior Dogs: When it comes to senior dogs, antler dog chews can offer them plenty of safe gnawing satisfaction, though they probably are chewing with less vigor than they did in their younger years. However, they might also have fewer or damaged teeth, increasing chances of cutting gums or hurting a tooth while chewing something hard or rough.

As you will see below, split organic antler dog chews, with their tasty exposed marrow and slightly less aggressive chewing profile, would be more appropriate in any of these circumstances. And again, be watchful and vigilant any time your puppy, senior dog or fur baby of any age is chewing a healthy dog chew. 

Why Do Dogs Like Organic Antler Dog Chews?

Husky with Farm to Pet Reindeer Split Antler outdoors with his tongue out.
Bandit waiting for his Split Reindeer Antler from Farm to Pet.

While dogs who love to chew might not be all that discriminating about what they’re chewing, their pet parents sure are! Luckily, organic antler chews appeal to both parties! Dogs like organic antler dog chews for many of the reasons noted above: they satisfy their natural urge to chew and provide a similar chewing experience to a bone with the flavor of marrow to boot.


Of course, pet parents love the fact that chewing on organic antler dog chews pleases their pups, but we will also love the fact that they are odor-free, mess-free, and super long-lasting. Antler chews are also cruelty-free and sustainable, with elk and deer naturally shedding their antlers every year, leaving them ready and able to be harvested for your puppo’s organic chewing pleasure!

Key Benefits of Organic Antler Chews for Dogs

Golden Retriever waiting to enjoy his Deer Antler from Farm to Pet.
Deer Antlers are Organic Dog Chews. 

As we have learned in this article as well as previous posts , organic antler chews offer many benefits to dogs, so let’s recap the top ones below:

  • Antler Dog Chews Are Durable and Non-Splintering – providing hours of safe, clean, odor-free chewing satisfaction for doggos.
  • Antler Dog Chews Are Nutrient-Rich – comprised of essential minerals and trace elements like magnesium and glucosamine that support bone and joint health.
  • Antler Dog Chews Are Good for Dental Health – naturally helping to remove debris, plaque and tartar during the chewing process.
  • Antler Dog Chews Are All-Natural and Organic – never bleached, colored, flavored, or otherwise processed, just like all our healthy pet treats at Farm to Pet!

Choosing Chews: Split versus Whole Organic Antler Dog Chews

Hairy Winston the Newfoundland dog chewing on his whole organic dog chew from Farm to Pet.
Winston the Newfoundland enjoying his Organic Dog Chew. 

Once you’ve decided to introduce organic antler dog chews to your pup, the question turns to which style – split or whole? While deer antlers have prongs that mean they can only be offered whole and are ideal for very aggressive chewers, elk and reindeer antlers have long sections without prongs that enable them to be split, making them suitable for more chewing styles. While you can certainly try out whole or split, below are some of the key points of difference to show why one might be better suited than the other for your dog.

Split Organic Antler Dog Chews

Split means the antler has been split lengthwise to expose the marrow. Exposed marrow can be more enticing to the novice chewer since the taste is right there for the getting, as well as requiring slightly less aggressive chewing in general.

Bassett Hounds love chewing on Farm to Pet Elk Antlers.
Bassett Hounds love chewing on Elk Antlers.

Whole Organic Antler Dog Chews

Whole means just that – an intact section of a whole antler. All of the tasty marrow is hidden inside, requiring much more aggressive or longer term chewing to reach the reward. This makes whole antlers ideal for experienced and prolific chewers.

Doodle enjoying a Split Antler Chew from Farm to Pet outdoors.
Milly, the Doodle, enjoying a Split Antler Chew outdoors. 

It is important to note that, regardless of whether an antler is split or whole, you need to select the antler size that is appropriate for your dog’s weight. Antlers are harvested and prepared for your furry chewers in a variety of sizes to fit most dogs. Our handy size and chewing style guidelines on each product page go even further to differentiate between the different types, sizes and styles of organic antler dog chews to help you choose the best dog chew for your fur baby. When in doubt, seek the advice of your veterinarian, and always remember to always follow precautions and supervise your puppo’s chew sessions.

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With all of the benefits of organic antler dog chews – coupled with the fact that dogs simply love to chew them! – it is certainly fortunate that antlers make a safe chew toy option for so many dogs, even puppies and senior dogs. With split varieties for novice and less aggressive chewers, and whole for experienced and more aggressive chewers, most doggos will have the chance to enjoy the nutrition, dental benefits, and plain old satisfaction of organic antler dog chews!


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