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According to the ASPCA, the motivations your dog may have for eating its own feces include perfectly natural doggie instincts, but may also indicate some form of malnourishment. In a state of nature, dog parents would often eat the feces of their young to keep their nest clean and prevent predators from being alerted by the smell. Another reason may be that in the absence of food, dogs ate their poop for the minimal nutritional value it offered.

While you may never have tried to kill time by eating out of the toilet, your dog doesn’t have a smartphone or an Xbox to keep herself busy. Coprophagia can be one of the compulsions triggered by anxiety if your pup suffers from it, not unlike compulsive chewing. If the dog has been rebuked for pooping in specific places, then they may conclude that it is necessary to dispose of the evidence.

Your dog might anticipate that reaction and simply do it to get you to pay attention to her.

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