Why does my dog eat poop and how can I make him stop?


Why does my dog eat poop and how can I make him stop?

Coprophagia or stool eating is a nasty habit that can appear in all dog breeds but it is more frequently seen in young pups that are forced to live in small spaces (pet-shops), female dogs after giving birth or in dogs that don’t receive enough exercise. As disgusting as it sound stool eating its pretty common and are a lot of reasons why your pet is doing this. In this article we will try to dissect this bad habit and the reasons behind it.

First we will start with behavior reasons:

  • a)Cleaning up the mess: a dog that is forced to live in a small space will try to keep its nest clean and yes that means he will consume its own poop in order to achive this. An example of this behavior can be usually seen in pet-shops where pups live in small cages for a long time.
  • b)A mothers love: a female dog after giving birth will start to consume the puppies feces. This behavior is absolutely normal because the female tries to maintain the den clean and dry for the newborns also eliminating any possible source of infections. Another reason why the mother does this is to hide the scent as quickly as possible from any natural predators.
  • c)Confusion: if a puppy is punished for doing number 2 in the house he might get the idea that pupping is bad and in order to hide the evidence he will try to consume the feces
  • d)Monkey see monkey do: if you have two dogs or even more and one is an eater of this delicacies the others might start to do the same thing.
  • e)Boredom: a dog that figured out that he will get your attention when doing this nasty habit, will start to consume feces.
  • f)Hunger: if a long time has passed since he ate, the dog might eat poop

Medical reasons:

  • a)Nutritional deficiency: if you feed him low quality food that doesn’t contain all the nutrients that your dog needs he will try to get them from poop
  • b)Parasites: this tiny creatures feed on nutrients out from your dog resulting in him feeling hungry and weak and leading further in poop eating
  • c)Malabsorbtion: because they cannot absorb all the nutrients in a normal digestion they will try to recover them from poop

Treatment and how to reduce coprophagia

  • a)If your dog lives outdoors make sure to keep the yard clean as often as you can
  • b)Try offering him a toy with which he can play in order to reduce boredom
  • c)Make sure he gets enough exercise
  • d)Add enzyme supplements to their food for a better digestion
  • e)Take him to the vet to be sure he doesn’t have parasites
  • f)Try adding non-toxic substances to the poop that can change its taste, like hot sauce
  • g)When you go for a walk with him try keeping him a leash or use a muzzle

Apart from being a really disgusting habit, stool eating can be unsafe especially for a dog that hasn’t been vaccinated. Many dangerous diseases can be transmitted through feces like parvovirus and if diseases weren’t enough also parasites can be found in them.

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