All Things Dog Blog
Why does my dog eat poo?

Today we have a guest blog post on a fascinating topic: poo eating. If your dog’s a poo muncher I’m sure you’ve wondered why… and more importantly WHAT THE HECK you can do about it?. Well, without further ado here is some insight from Lyndall,  holistic health advisor from Canine Vitality. WHY DOES MY DOG EAT POOP???? While I am sure it is not EVERYONE’s cup of tea to know why this occurs, there are some of you doggie lovers out there who have a dog that just loves eating poop, whether it be their own or that of other animals such as sheep, rabbit etc. And maybe you know why it is occurring, or maybe you are left clueless as to why your dog carries out this rather gross act!! Coprophagia or ‘poo eating’ is a reasonably common practice in our dogs (and in cats). Yes I know it is disgusting, but often your dog has good reason to do so. While there can be behavioural issues surrounding this problem (eg- boredom, attention seeking/dominance), it tends to be more related to a deficiency or imbalance within your dog’s system. 
Some of the main reasons your dog will eat their own (or other animal’s) poop include:

  • – Lack of digestive enzymes (in particular Trypsin)
  • 
- Imbalance of good bacteria
  • – Gastrointestinal parasites
  • – Problems with absorption of nutrients- deficiencies in minerals and B vitamins in particular
  • – Stress and anxiety can also contribute

Dogs that are fed commercial diets are often more likely to consume their own poo as they may have more of a tendency to experiencing digestive imbalances. Some treatment suggestions:
 Always feed a natural raw diet and avoid grains where possible. This will help ensure that your dog is getting plenty of enzymes, vitamins, minerals etc in their diet. Also, by feeding such a diet, you are helping your dog build a strong immune system which helps prevent parasite infestations and other gut problems.
 Supplement with a good digestive enzyme supplement and probiotic
. Correct malabsorption problems by using nutrients such as zinc, slippery elm, L-glutamine, fatty acids. These all assist in healing the mucous membrane of the intestinal wall. Use a wholefood supplement such as spirulina which can provide a broad range of nutrients including minerals and B complex vitamins. 
If there are gastrointestinal parasites, have your vet perform a stool sample test to check for these and consider natural anti parasitic treatments (herbs etc) if necessary. Treat stress/anxiety issues through the use of herbal nervine tonics, flower essences, B vitamins, magnesium. Keep your dog well stimulated mentally and physically so they don’t become bored
. Always clean up poop around the yard to take away temptation! And sometimes, dogs eat poop because they like to!!!! This article was contributed by Lyndall Pinchen of Canine Vitality a naturopathic health clinic for our furry mates in Cedar Grove QLD. If you’re out of the local area no worries! Canine Vitality offers online and phone consultations to help sort out your canine health issues. T: 0417 710 882   E: lyndall pinchen@gmail.com    Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/caninevitality

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