I have an embarrassing problem. My dog likes to eat poop–her poop as well as that of other dogs. Why does she do this? It’s so gross and disturbing. Please help!
Feasting on Feces in Shepherd Forest
Dear Feasting on Feces,
I can certainly understand your concern about your dog eating poop. It’s really gross … I mean, does your dog kiss her mother with that mouth? Outrageous!
But, rest easy knowing that what you’re experiencing is rather common and could be caused by several factors:
If you’re feeding your dog too much people food, this could cause her poop to have the residual scent of our rich, human food. Many dogs love to eat cat poop also, which due to a higher protein diet, is appealing to many dogs. So try to avoid feeding her table scraps and see if that decreases her urge to eat her poo.
Boredom or anxiety
Believe it or not, dogs will eat all manner of strange things — poop included — when they’re bored and also when they’re feeling anxiety. Separation anxiety can cause dogs to chew, pace and, yes, eat stuff that they shouldn’t. Try keeping your pet otherwise occupied when you’re away with Kong toys, puzzles and other engaging distractions.
Visit to vet might be in order
In some cases, eating poop could be a sign that your dog’s health is precarious. Dogs who suffer from diabetes or parasites sometimes eat their own poop, so check in with your vet to rule out anything abnormal.
Clean up after your dog
If your dog is eating poop in the yard, perhaps it’s time to get diligent about cleaning up after her to avoid this unsightly habit. While you might not be able to completely nip this habit in the bud, you can certainly reduce her exposure to the tempting turds. Diligently cleaning up, coupled with some new, brain-stretching toys, might be the equation for putting the kibosh on your dog’s embarrassing habit.
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