If you’ve ever wondered why a dog eats poop, you’ve come to the right place. It’s not a habit you want to encourage, chomping on a bit of horse poop during walkies or having a preference for their kitty siblings’ litter tray. You’re probably disgusted by it. To begin, we’d like to reassure you that eating poop is perfectly normal and common in puppies and dogs. The real questions are why they do it, whether it makes them sick, and how to prevent it.
Why Does Dog Eat Poop?
Eating poop, also known as coprophagia, is a normal behavior in many animals. There are numerous reasons why your dog may be eating poop, but it is most likely because they enjoy the taste and texture of it. The reasons why some dogs consume feces are unknown, but there are a few theories. Dogs may eat feces for various reasons, including instinct, hunger, stress, or illness.
If your dog is looking for extra attention and is aware that you usually react strongly when they are caught eating poop, the behavior could be a way for them to get noticed. Dogs evolved by scavenging, so it could be an instinct to ensure they have enough food. It could be an effort to gain attention.
Scenting it on their mothers
When puppies sniff fecal odors on their mother’s breath after she has cleaned them, they become confused. Good canine mothers lick their newborn puppies instinctively to help them go to the toilet and to keep them clean.
They are nursing
Mothers will frequently eat their puppies’ poop after having a litter to keep the den clean. Most puppies stop being interested in poo around this age, but some never seem to grow out of it. In the wild, this instinct may also help to keep predators away from the smell of a dog’s den. Since a dog’s mother teaches them how to be dogs, puppies will instinctively mimic their mother’s behavior.
Sometimes other animals’ poop tastes good to them
The most common reason for dogs eating other animals’ poop is simply that they enjoy the taste. A nutritional imbalance, specifically a lack of digestive enzymes, can cause dogs to consume feces. Stressed dogs may eat poop to relieve their anxiety. Dogs who are under-stimulated or under-exercised may eat feces out of boredom.
Dogs feel stressed
When a dog is scared or stressed, he may eat his poop. This could be a self-soothing mechanism in some cases. If a dog is punished for improper defecation or other feces-related behavior, he may associate the punishment with the presence of feces. He removes the “evidence” by eating the feces to avoid penalty.
Hunger and food obsession
A starving or severely malnourished dog may eat anything it can get its hands on. Some dogs, despite being well-fed, are constantly hungry (this may be a sign of illness or simply the personality of the dog). Many dogs are food obsessed and consume anything that tastes good.
Other Related Post: All You Need to Know About Your Dog’s Poo
How to Get Dog to Stop Eating Poop
Veterinarians and dog owners have used several strategies to help dogs to stop eating poop, including:
Try dog training tools
A head collar can assist in diverting your dog’s focus from the recent excrement. Please pick up the stool right quickly and turn away from them. Some people have tried wearing basket muzzles on their dogs in an attempt to discourage them, but some dogs may learn to smear the muzzle on top of the feces and eat it. A foxtail field mask is another device that can stop a dog from eating feces. Poop finds it challenging to travel through the tiny holes in the cotton mesh.
Keep the dog’s rest area clean
If there is no free poop around, the dog will not be able to engage in opportunistic stool eating. A regular eating schedule will also help keep a dog’s stool regular. This makes it easier to keep an eye on your dog and keep him from eating his poop. Scheduled feedings will also help to prevent future overeating and obesity problems.
Offer digestive enzyme supplements
There has been some success with just adding a digestive enzyme supplement to the diet of the coprophagic dog and/or the diet of other dogs in the home if you’re wondering how to stop a dog from eating poop. An enzyme called bromelain, found in fresh pineapple and frequently used in meat tenderizers, breaks down proteins.
Supervise your dog
When taking your dogs on a stroll, keep an eye on them and pick up any dog waste right away. Teach your dog to say, “Leave it.” Let’s tell your dog what is and isn’t appropriate to eat. Poop, as well as some popular houseplants like oleander and some common foods like onions and chocolates that are harmful to the dogs, should not be consumed.
Use dog chews that are made to discourage this behavior
Simple dogs chew naturally makes the stool taste bitter, making it unappealing to the dog who consumes it. Stop Eating Poop Chews also contains Super foods such as peppermint oil to help with breath and parsley oil to help with digestion. Digestion enzymes that have been carefully selected also help dogs digest and utilize food more efficiently, resulting in less stool output.
Feed your dog high-quality food
Feed your dog a well-balanced diet. This will keep a dog’s digestive system healthy and supply him with all the necessary nutrients. If you want to feed your dog regularly and develop a healthy diet, you should consider using the WOpet smart pet feeder. It is a well-known recommended product that offers numerous benefits.
It can record a 10s voice message and will be played when feeding your cats. The WOpet feeder is battery- or wall-powered, so it will keep feeding your pet even if there is a power outage, thanks to three D-size batteries. You can program each meal time with a few button clicks on an easy-to-use LCD screen.
There is no single reason why dogs eat poop, but it is usually normal and not a problem — at least not for the dog. The methods listed above are the most effective in getting your dog to stop eating poop. However, there are numerous other methods and factors to consider when it comes to dog poop eating.