Have you ever wondered why your dog eats poop?
Unfortunately, dogs will return to eating poop again and again. Most experts have had to conclude that there's more at work than simple imitation. There are times when that includes imitating their least desirable behaviour - eating poop. But they do, so there has to be something about it that they like.
Dogs start getting hungry whenever they sniff something with a pungent smell, and poop certainly does smell.
So let's investigate further why dogs enjoy eating poop and 5 ways to stop them from doing it.
Rule Out Health Problems
Although it's very common, if your dog has all of a sudden started eating poop, get them checked out by your local Veterinarian in the first instance to rule out any potential health problems such as:
- A poor diet and/or lack of nutrients
- Thyroid conditions
Why Does My Dog Eat Poop?
Poop eating is often triggered by behavioural problems, so let's look at a few here.
Dogs, no less than children, crave attention and they do whatever it takes to get it, including things they know you hate. This probably explains why some dogs only eat poop when their owners are around to watch.
Dogs can easily become bored and try to find things to entertain them, one of which is by putting things in their mouths. When not much is happening, they often nose around the yard, picking up sticks and putting them down, even mouthing rocks on occasion.
Since they aren't offended by the smell or taste of poop, it's just another thing for them to pick up, play with, and explore.
3. Isolation / Stress
It has been proven that dogs that are isolated and/or suffer with stress are far more likely to eat poop.
Keep them entertained and free from stress to avoid this problem.
Ensuring your dog is fed appropriately is essential and will help elevate the problem of eating poop.
Stick to regular meal times, and where possible feed them by the same person.
If your dog has pooped in the house and you have punished them, they may eat their own poop to avoid future punishment.
What Poop Does My Dog Eat?
Not all poop tastes the same, dogs seem to have different preferences. Some are attracted to the stools of deer, cows, or horses. Others will eat the stools of other dogs.
And a great many dogs are attracted to cat droppings, possibly because cat foods are very high in protein and the dogs are going after undigested nutrients.
If you dog is attracted to cat droppings, you can help by keeping a cat litter tray clean and out of reach of the dog.
What Happens If My Dog Eats Too Much Poop?
Dogs occasionally eat so much poop that they get sick to their stomachs. For the most part, however, it's not likely to make them sick - although they may get worms from eating the stools of an infected animal, their digestive tracts are very forgiving.
The people who live with dogs, however, are less forgiving. For one thing, it's an ugly sight that no one wants to watch. There's also the fact that dogs who eat poop have heart-stopping bad breath. It takes some serious devotion from the dog owner to get past that!
5 Ways To Stop Your Dog From Eating Poop
1. Make The Poop Taste Worse Than It Does
Veterinarians sometimes recommend adding garlic, canned pumpkin, or accent meat tenderizer to a poop-eating dog's food.
Assuming that it's his own dung that he's attracted do, these ingredients may give it a taste he dislikes - although it's hard to imagine that anything could make it taste worse than it already does. This isn't a perfect solution, but it does work for some dogs.
2. Keep Living Area Clean
It goes without saying, keep your dogs living area and yard clean and make sure there are no poops lying around they can pick up.
3. Supervise Them
Supervising your dog whilst walking is essential, pick up any poop straight away, so they have no chance of eating it.
4. Use Commands
Using forceful commands such as 'leave it' will in time become second nature if you use it in a way that you give them a treat after they have pooped.
5. Use Supplements
Sometimes a dog eats poop because something is missing in their diet.
Therefore, you may want to consider giving your dog supplements to aid their health and wellbeing.
Althоugh mоѕt hіgh ԛuаlіtу ѕtоrе bоught dоg fооd аrе nutrіtіоnаllу bаlаnсеd аnd соntаіn аll еѕѕеntіаl nutrіеntѕ nесеѕѕаrу fоr оur реtѕ, ѕоmеtіmеѕ wе ѕhоuld соnѕіdеr ѕuррlеmеntіng their dіеt wіth ѕоmе аddіtіоnаl vіtаmіnѕ аnd minerals.
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Check out my professional advice and recommendations in the following article ‘How Healthy is Your Dog’s Diet?'.
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