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Dog Eating Feces

You took your dog for a walk; You had just finished telling your neighbor how well-behaved he was when you suddenly caught him eating dog feces. Noooo! What could be driving your dog to do this?

Caprophagia (the technical term for eating feces) is a nasty, but not uncommon behavior among dogs. The good news is that eating feces will not generally harm your dog. You already know the bad news; It's nauseating, it's dirty, and it causes the worst bad breath imaginable. There is also a risk of parasite transmission if your dog eats the feces of other animals.

Curiosity

No one is exactly sure why dogs do this; but there are several possible reasons. He might just enjoy doing it. Dogs interact with the world through their mouths; They like to carry sticks in their mouths and like to chew toys or bones.

Dogs also like things with a strong odor, and feces also fall into this category. Although it may seem strange, feces-eating behavior is simply your dog's way of examining things that are interesting to him.

Confused puppies

Puppies will sometimes eat their own feces during potty training. They do this because they are still unsure of where they are and are not allowed to defecate. Fearing that they have done something wrong, they will 'destroy the evidence'. This type of grooming behavior can also be seen in adult dogs living indoors.

Mother dogs will often eat their puppies' feces while grooming them. This is probably an instinctive behavior. In the wild, eating the puppy's feces will reduce the likelihood of predators finding its defenseless pup.

nutritional deficiencies

One of the most common theories as to why dogs behave this way is that they are trying to compensate for deficiencies in their diet. The feces of herbivores can provide vitamins not included in your dog's normal diet.

Cat food is rich in protein, so the cat litter box may be attractive to your dog. Since cats' litter boxes can be toxic to a dog, it is imperative that you get this behavior under control immediately.

Prevention

The easiest way to overcome this problem is to do something as soon as your dog sees his business. Some people recommend putting pepper, Tabasco sauce or paraffin on the stool to 'worsen' the taste.

There are also additives for your dog's food that will provide flavor when eaten, but will become bitter when digested, thus making the feces inedible. Unfortunately, these methods are not effective on all dogs.

In general, the best solution for dealing with caprophagia is to be gentle but firm when trying to discourage it and, above all, to be consistent in the discipline you have established.

You should also talk to your veterinarian about if your dog has additional nutritional requirements, who can identify those needs.

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