Limited research in young adults and immature animals suggests a detrimental effect of tobacco on bone during growth. The aim of this study was to determine the adverse effects of maternal nicotine exposure during pregnancy and lactation on neonatal rat bone development, and to determine a protective effect of pentoxifylline (PTX). Gravid rats were assigned into four groups, one control (group 1) and three experimental (groups 11, III, and IV). In group II, pregnant rats received 3 mg/kg/day nicotine alone, subcutaneously, until 21 days postnatal. In group III, pregnant rats received nicotine (3 mg/kg/day) and PTX (60 mg/kg/day). In group IV, pregnant rats received PTX alone (60 mg/kg/day). Whole body mineral density (BMD), content (BMC), area (BA), and histopathologic and morphologic findings of the femur were determined at 21 days of age. The study revealed that nicotine exposure (group 11) decreased birth weight, pregnancy weight gain, and length of femur compared with other groups (P < 0.01). Birth weight was higher in groups III (PTX + nicotine) and IV (PTX) than in group 11 (nicotine). Body weight at 21 days of age was higher (P = 0.009) in the PTX alone group (group IV) compared with the other groups. BMD was higher (P < 0.001) in the PTX-treated groups (group III and IV) compared with other groups. In addition, there were more apoptotic chondrocytes in the hypertrophic zone of rats exposed to nicotine alone (group 11) compared with the other groups (P < 0.001). In conclusion, maternal nicotine exposure resulted in decreased birth weight, pregnancy weight gain, and bone lengthening, and increased apoptosis. Pentoxifylline supplementation was found to prevent the adverse effects of maternal nicotine exposure on BMD and birth weight.