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Category: Dog Trainer Certification Programs | Author: admin 18.02.2015
You don't see dogs eating grass everyday, but in some dogs this can be a sign of a health change. For years, dog owners and veterinarians believed that dogs with upset stomachs ate grass to induce vomiting or that the grass upset some dogs' digestive systems. Owners who occasionally catch their dogs eating grass can relax a bit once they understand that this behavior is fairly normal and usually harmless. Since grass consumption is basically harmless, there is no reason to prevent your dog from eating it unless he eats an unusually large amount of it each time he goes out or it always causes vomiting. Ask your veterinarian for recommendations and assistance if your dog continues to consume an excessive amount of grass.
Most dog owners have probably seen their canine friend graze on grass at one point or another.
The grass causes gastric irritation that leads to vomiting, which helps the dog feel better afterward, the theory holds.
In a 2008 study in the journal Applied Animal Behaviour Science, researchers found that while grass consumption didn't often lead to vomiting, dogs that seemed ill before eating grass were more likely to vomit than dogs that appeared to act normally beforehand.
In this scenario, the dog may even be seeking out grass to get additional nutrients it may not have in its normal diet, such as fiber, minerals or digestive enzymes.
Wolves and other wild canids are known to regularly eat plant matter, suggesting dogs' grass-eating behavior is innate and perfectly normal. Few grass-eaters are likely to have ever suffered an exploratory laparoscopy to surgically look into the contents of an abdomen and biopsy the gastrointestinal tract, but severe symptoms could theoretically lead a veterinarian to decide this is the best approach.


The grass is generally not harmful to dogs, but some people theorize that dogs are driven to eat grass when they have an upset stomach.
Yet, according to Cape Ann Veterinary Hospital, a study at the University of California-Davis's Center for Companion Animal Health examined 1,500 dogs that had consumed grass at least ten times over the course of a year to get more definitive answers.
However, it still pays to watch for any change in a dog's general behavior and habits after he consumes that grass. Of course, never let a dog eat or play on grass that has been treated with harmful chemicals to kill pests or weeds. You can also set up a kennel run and cover the grassy floor with flooring or outdoor carpeting. Like humans, dogs can suffer from gastrointestinal issues including upset stomach, nausea, bloating and illness from pathogenic microbes. Once out, it will chow down on any grass available, taking large bites and often swallowing the plants whole. In such cases, a dog may appear to hunt for a specific type of plant, rather than ingesting any grass it can find. A 2007 case study in the Journal of Veterinary Medical Science reported that a switch to a high-fiber diet stopped a miniature poodle from regularly eating grass.
Indeed, a 2009 dog study in the Journal of Veterinary Behavior found that puppies were more likely to eat grass if their mothers did while nursing. Find out more about why dogs eat grass and if you should ask the veterinarian about your pet's habit.


Raw grass is not toxic to dogs unless it is treated with chemical pesticides and fertilizers. The study found that less than nine percent were sick prior to eating the grass, and less than one in four vomited after consuming the grass. If your dog becomes lethargic, has diarrhea, has problems defecating or urinating, or shows any other signs of illness right before or shortly after eating grass, you should ask your veterinarian to evaluate your pet's health. Just make sure the grass is not treated with any chemicals that could be harmful if your pet eats them. The researchers determined that grass consumption is most likely a trait that modern dogs have inherited from their wolf ancestors which also ate grass occasionally. While grass is unlikely the cause of any illness, any change in eating habits and behavior sometimes indicates a problem.
Scientists believe wolves generally eat grass to help them purge internal parasites and prevent the parasites from building up in their systems. The exact reason why dogs eat grass and why it makes some dogs throw up is still basically unknown.



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