A dog that eats its own feces is not a normal behavior. It is important to be aware of the problem and to react without stressing him. However, it is important to establish the causes and to go back to the source of the problem in order to find solutions. This article will give you some advice on why your pet is eating its feces!
What is coprophagia?
Coprophagia is the tendency of an animal to eat its own feces or sometimes those of other animals. In some species, this is a natural action, but in dogs, this type of eating should not occur. If your dog is prone to these actions, then it can be described as a behavioral disorder. There are obviously risks for your dog from an oral hygiene point of view, but also for his health. Eating feces can lead to the development of certain diseases.
There are two categories of coprophagous dogs:
- the one who eats his own excrements
- the one that eats the excrements of his fellow dogs
What if my dog eats other animals' feces?
Although you may find it repulsive, another animal's feces can be seen as appetizing to your dog. Indeed, depending on what the animal has eaten, the digested food will attract your dog who will see it as a kind of treat.
There are several solutions to prevent this:
- avoid places where there are many animals, this will limit the concentration of excrement
- avoid walking your dog when he is not eating
- congratulate him when he does not eat a dropping after sniffing it
Why does my pet eat its own feces?
If your pet eats his own feces repeatedly, the problem may be more serious. While this may be related to the same reasons mentioned above, it may also be related to unhappiness, stress, diabetes or malnutrition.
Consequence of a medical problem:
It is important to consult a veterinarian to rule out a medical condition. Sometimes a dog that eats its own feces may have bowel disease, diabetes mellitus or intestinal parasites.
The veterinarian will be able to conduct comprehensive medical examinations to draw initial conclusions about the behavior.
Many dogs are constantly trying to get their owner's attention. Eating your dog's own waste can be one of the techniques used by your pet. However, by punishing your dog when he eats his own excrement, you give him attention and create a vicious circle.
In this case, the best thing to do is to ignore him, although this is difficult. If your furry is acting in an attempt to get your attention and he realizes that this technique is not working, he will stop and find something else.
As with other animals' feces, if you overfeed your dog, he will make feces that are not very digestible and therefore palatable to him. In this case, choose a dog food that is easy to digest and don't hesitate to alternate between wet dog food (pâtée) and dry dog food (croquette).
Cheating his boredom:
Eating his feces can be a sign of boredom in your furry. In this case, it is important not to ignore it but rather to check if he has something to occupy himself, if he is not frustrated, if he has enough space...
Here are some solutions:
- Give him new toys
- Teach him new exercises
- Give him treats to chew
- Make sure his kennel is adapted to his size
Correct his mess:
One of the last possibilities that would explain your dog's poop eating is a lack of potty training. In this case, the dog eats his waste to "clean up" for fear of being scolded. If you think this is your dog's problem, go back to the basics of training with a puppy mat, for example.
So there are many reasons and solutions on the subject of poop and dogs. Please note that if you don't see your dog doing it, don't scold him and don't pick up his poop in front of him, he might think it's a game and that will only make the problem worse!