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Coprophagia may not be the sort of thing that pops up often in polite conversation or at family get-togethers, but eating poop is more common than you’d think. The close relationship we have with our dogs is one reason we are taken aback when a dog eats poop.
Dogs who are new mothers also lick their puppies to stimulate and encourage them to poop on their own for their first few weeks of life.
The most common reason given for dogs eating poop is nutrient deficiency or lack of dietary variety. Dogs do some pretty crazy things, several of which fall within the "dog being a dog” realm.
While you look on in shock and horror as you watch your dog down a mouthful of poop, you'll get some solace in the fact that you are not alone.
In fact, a preliminary study out of the University of California, Davis, found that up to 16 percent of dogs eat feces frequently, with 85 percent of the stool eaters consuming the feces of other dogs. Puppies in particular are drawn to feces, perhaps because they put everything in their mouths and feces just add to the intrigue, but they usually grow out of the habit by 6 months of age.
Although gross, stool eating is generally considered harmless in a healthy dog free of intestinal parasites, especially if he’s eating his own stools that are less than two to three days old, says Benjamin L. However, there is a slight risk your dog could develop an intestinal infection if he already has such an infection and is eating his own stools that are five days or older, which increases the intestinal parasite load. To get this behavior under control, if your dog eats poop frequently and isn’t a puppy or nursing mom, don’t yell at him — and certainly don’t rub his nose in feces, which is inhumane — as this could inadvertently cause him to become compulsive about this behavior, Reid says. You can also add taste deterrents to his diet, as they can make poop less palatable, or apply taste deterrents to feces in your yard, along your walking routes, or even in litterboxes if he’s eating cat poop — better yet, move the litterboxes out of his reach. Yet another strategy is to try distracting your dog — Reid tells of a dog owner who barked at her dog every time she saw her eating feces — and asking him to do something else.
I think that dogs also like to eat poop because it tastes like the food that the dog who pooped ate.
Cat feces probably attracts dogs because cat food is higher in protein and fat than dog food, and consequently cat feces is, too.
You can often pique a dog’s interest in a specific toy by taking it out, playing with it excitedly by yourself, then putting it away again.
There are some well-accepted behavioral explanations for dogs eating their own stool — not that I know of any research to back them up. Many people muzzle their dogs to prevent poop-eating, but the commonest result is simply a muzzle stained with droppings, which is more than you wanted.


I shudder when I recall it, but once, when she was very young, my dog Tina jumped into my arms to lick me. In nature, however, the love of a mother dog for her puppies provides a solid explanation for dogs eating poop. Of course, if your dog is pregnant and giving birth in the home, maternal coprophagia is easy enough to control or manage by fastidiously cleaning up after puppies when they do defecate. When you see your dog eating poop, one instinct is to wonder whether your dog isn’t totally satisfied with the food she’s getting. As much as it unnerves and unsettles us, and as often as we scrunch our noses at the thought, dogs will continue eating poop. As to why some dogs continue the behavior when they’re older, one theory suggests that their diet may be lacking certain nutrients. Consult with your veterinarian before using a deterrent to determine if it’s safe for your dog. Your guess is as good as mine, as for why dogs like horse and cow manure and goose droppings. Dogs who suffer from malabsorption syndromes, like exocrine pancreatic insufficiency, sometimes eat feces, including their own. Whenever he saw a cat issue Muggsy adored cat poop and used to head for the box at a dead run.
Tidy the lawn and clean up the poop so there is nothing poopy for your dog to experiment with.
If the poop-snack habit isn’t well established, it might die away on its own, provided your dog has no additional opportunities to practice it.
Certainly, if your dog eats poop, it puts them at greater risk of ingesting intestinal parasites, and exposes them to any number of other unsanitary and unhealthy agents. Eating poop has also been linked to hyperthyroidism, a condition in which certain hormones are overproduced.
Unlike humans above the age of two, plenty of dogs just love The Poop, whether it comes from cats, horses, geese, or, most disgustingly to many a proud owner, their own body or their master’s.
Before dogs were dogs, they were wolves, and upon locating human excrement and human garbage, the wolves chowed down.
The rationale would be the same one that makes crate training so successful: dogs avoid soiling their nests. Train yourself to hear those little cat feet going scritch scritch scritch, and scoop the poop as soon as kitten’s done.


The commercial taste deterrents you feed your dog don’t have any impact on any feces but hers.
A dog eats poop to mask or mitigate the scent of her puppies’ poop from potential predators. If you own several dogs and one or more happens, from time to time, to be eating poop, it may be simply something they will see and try themselves. Another theory one comes across frequently is that a strict diet of dry dog food will cause a dog to begin eating poop.
On the other hand, if your dog has intestinal parasites, which can affect the dog’s ability to take in and absorb sufficient nutrients, she may look to poop to provide what the parasite is denying her. A dog eating poop could be suffering from digestive issues like intestinal malabsorption or have issues with his pancreas. The question will continue to linger until dogs acquire the power of speech and can answer it for themselves. Eventually, there evolved an animal like the wolf, except that it was smaller, it hung around folks, and mostly scavenged instead of mostly hunted: The Dog. Poop, too, may suddenly rise in value to your dog when the result of his own provisional sniff and lick is the fact that you shriek, tug him away, and stash the experimental stuff in a bag. If you reside in a rural area, chances are you can’t control the availability of horse and cow and goose and deer droppings. Whether you’re in your home, the yard, out for a walk on the city streets, or watching your dog frolic with others on a beach, no place is safe from the stomach-churning but altogether commonplace phenomenon of dogs eating poop.
In any event, it is a good idea to change up your dog’s food from time to time for the sake of variety. However, if your dog has a parasite problem, like Coccidiosis, it’s far more likely you’d notice the frequent diarrhea and dehydration before you’d comment upon your dog’s predilection for eating poop. And no matter how much your dog hates it, and which kind of hindrance you use, sooner or later he will find an untreated stash. And the following time he spots some feces at the dog park, he speeds up the snatch-and-grab, and you melt into a puddle of embarrassment. Result: poop snacking is on what is technically known as a variable intermittent reinforcement schedule, which is what trainers use whenever they want to produce an extremely persistent, lasting behavior.



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Comments to «Why are my dogs eating dog poop»

  1. SENYOR writes:
    Walk around your home, try carrying a toy.
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  4. 10_ON_010 writes:
    Methods in coaching will make the canine afraid even the.