You may have noticed that your precious pup has a disgusting habit. Maybe you spent a fortune on gourmet doggy treats, only for him to dig into something else... However, he is not alone - it is in fact pretty common for dogs to eat poop. There is even a technical name for it: coprophagia.But how can this strange behaviour be explained?
Honestly, eating faeces isn't that serious for most dogs. Theyare natural scavengers and your pup might be trying to find some good bacteria in his own poop - he is simply trying to strengthen his gut! If he consumes the poop of others, he may be looking for the minerals lacking in his own diet.Alternatively, it may be that your pooch isn't getting enough attention. If you make a big fuss every time he eats poop, your dog may continue to do this just to get a reaction out of you. Even negative attention is better than no attention!
Similarly, if your dog is bored, he may play with and eat his own faeces just for something to do.
Even if you are buying "good" dog food, it may not actually be very nutritious. Holistic veterinarian Dr. Patrick Mahaney told Rover:
Unfortunately, most dogs tend to eat the same thing day-in and day-out and in doing so, they're probably not going to be exposed to a diverse array of nutrients that their body needs.
Your dog may be bored of eating the same food all the time, so keep varying his diet to prevent poop-eating.
More scientifically, a study at the University of California concludes that it is a habit leftover from the wild. Dogs try to protect their fellow dogs from the parasites in their poop by eating it as quickly as possible!
If your dog is only a puppy, it will probably be something that he grows out of. However, if your dog continues to eat his own poop, you may need to address his health.Your dog may in fact be starving, despite being fed regularly. It is possible that your dog has a parasite which is taking all the nutrition from his food, leaving him hungry and looking for something else to fill him up.
If your dog is eating his faeces, take him to the vet to check out his health and make sure nothing is seriously wrong.Whilst the study reveals that there is only a 1-2% chance of "curing" this habit, you can make efforts to limit the temptation by removing your dog's poop as quickly as possible.Though you may not be able to quite understand the bizarre behaviour of your pooch, at least know that he's not alone!
Featured Image: @DogBreedsInfo