Dogs Eat Poop – Why do dogs eat poop?
Today is another one of those gross subjects that dog owners do not like to talk about but it happens and many ask “Why Do Dogs Eat Poop?” and it does not have to be their own doggie we are talking about here.
Reasons Why Dogs Eat Poop
Dogs sometimes eat poop but the good news is there are real reasons for it and others that are not very good reasons for them to be doing it at all.
Stool eating, also known as coprophagy, is actually quite normal behavior for a puppy they watch their mother do this from the time they are born, she does this both to keep the “den” clean and to protect the puppies from predators that might be drawn by the scent.
Next, we will look at some of the possible other reasons your dog or any dog might be considered coprophagy!
Dogs are from the canine species which we all know and their ancestors ate raw prey in doing so this type of meal contained the appropriate amount of digestive enzymes that our dog needs.
With the dog foods that are made today that we feed our dogs, the high processed dyes are lacking all the digestive enzymes that our dogs need to properly digest the food and absorb what they would have gotten from the guts of prey in the wild.
Regardless of how gross this is the feces that they just deposited in the yard is actually full of nutrients that they are looking for to replace the digestive enzymes they are missing in their regular dog food diet.
When was the last time you had a stool sample at the vet’s office intestinal parasites will absorb the nutrients from the food that should be going to your dog and this can also cause him to eat the feces?
Medications such as steroids, or certain diseases like diabetes and thyroid issues, can make dogs feel like they are starving so watch for these conditions which will cause increased appetite (most dogs do not need a push when hungry).
A dogs pancreas creates the digestive enzymes and if it is not creating enough this is known as pancreatic insufficiency, without these enzymes a dog will basically slowly starve to death. Watch for symptoms of weight loss, diarrhea, and stool eating to try to get those required nutrients.
Dogs do not just eat their own stools if you have cats in the house watch carefully should they decide this is a tasty treat which can be a sign of a deficiency or illness in the other pet (including other dogs). It basically all boils down to poor nutrient absorption with your dog.
Always make sure you are feeding your dog the proper amount of food and at regular times a hungry dog will look for other food sources which will include eating their own stool or that of another pet.
As puppies, it is normal for them to find feces and eat it puppies are like human babies everything goes in their mouth and to them, they do not find this gross because they are babies. Usually, they will outgrow this fetish.
Dogs are scavengers and as such do not think anything of eating feces should the opportunity present itself, they are not human and feel that this is alright especially if it smells good to them.
Spoiled dogs love attention and we all spoil our dogs at times some of the smart ones know if they go and have a bite of feces even if they are going to get into trouble we are going to pay attention to them double whammy snack and attention!
Trouble housebreaking your new puppy and punish them for going in the house? This can trigger poop eating to get rid of the evidence, not because they want to but to please their master they do it.
This is the worst one that I must report on puppy mills – if you did get your new puppy from a puppy mill they are more apt to develop this behavior over other breeders pups because of lack of care as in proper feedings and being in crates.
How To Cure Poop Eaters
The following are the things that I have done raising litters of puppies along with all the other dogs I have had and raised these are only my suggestions and I am hoping they might help you.
- First, always keep things clean, pick up after your dog immediately. If you have other pets, clean up after them right away, too, especially litter boxes. In other words, keep temptation at bay by keeping the yard and litter box clean.
- Exercise your dog keeping him/her mentally and physically engaged. Have a regular playtime like fetch and if he/she is very energetic or a working dog, try agility training or another brain-stimulating training. Make sure that he/she has plenty of toys around to keep him/her entertained.
- Feed him/her a raw, whole, varied diet of quality proteins, because raw food has those digestive enzymes your dog needs to help him/her to process his meals. If you are feeding cooked food only, you will want to add digestive enzymes.
- Check your dog’s stool regularly for parasites, and make sure to take a sample to the vet’s once a year.
- Avoiding punishment it is ineffective, there is another reason for your dog’s behavior, take the time to find out what!
- Staying on top of the digestion situation for all the pets in your house means healthier and happier pets. Watch, for your dog to be eating another dog’s or cat’s stool, not because he is deficient in something, but because they are not absorbing the nutrients in their food and their poop is extra enticing.
Now that you know some of the facts involved with why dogs eat poop and what can possibly cause the condition with the simple fixes listed above this should remedy the situation unless of course there is a medical condition causing the stool eating in the first place.
Keeping our pets healthy means that we have more time with them and we all know they do not live long enough before we will be forced to say goodbye to them.
These are not the type of articles that are fun to write about but they are necessary to keep our dogs healthy and well and to make sure we as pet owners take our responsibility seriously.
Have you caught your best friend eating stool?
If so how did you handle the situation?
We really would like to hear everyone’s answer to the questions you might have a solution that we can add to our list. Please leave all your answers along with suggestions, comments, or questions in the space provided below.
Thank you so much and until next time at Delightful Doggies 4 U,