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article imageDog treats can pack on the calories

By Tim Sandle     Jan 30, 2013 in Lifestyle
A popular treat given to dogs, called the "bully" or "pizzle stick", may be adding quite a lot of calories to a dog’s diet.
The information about the calorific value of dog treats has come from a joint project between U.S. and Canadian researchers. The research was focused on a common treat called a bully or "pizzle stick", which is made from the uncooked, dried penis of a bull or steer (pizzle is an old English word for penis).
The research into dog treats has been undertaken by the Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University, in the U.S., and the University of Guelph, in Canada.
From a study of 26 bully sticks, the sticks were shown to contain between nine to 22 calories per inch. This meant that the average six inch stick contained 88 calories, which equals nine percent of the daily calorie requirements for a 50-pound dog, and 30 percent of the daily calorie requirements for a 10-pound dog.
The findings reinforce the message that veterinarians and pet owners need to be aware that pet treats, like bully sticks, are a high source of calories and should only be used occasionally in a dog's diet. More attention has been paid recently to the nutrition and diet of pets in light of concerns about increasing obesity in household pets.
The research has been published in the Canadian Veterinary Journal.
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