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Why Do Dogs Eat Poop?

There are many reasons why dogs eat poop. This behavior depends mostly on a dog’s age, diet and conditions in which a dog is living.

If you are a dog owner, this article will be interesting and useful for you. We will tell you why your dog eats poop and what you can do to make him stop eating poop.

The Most Common Reasons Why Dogs Eat Poop

Dogs Are Scavengers. We all know that dogs were scavengers in the past before people domesticated them. It means that they were eating everything that was available in nature. It is known that dogs have been eaten other animals’ feces since long ago.

So, if your dog also eats poop, you don’t have to worry. It is only an instinctual need of your dog and it usually happens to newborn puppies.

It is also known that if too many dogs are in one household, some of them will be dominant, while others will be obedient and submissive. It is not uncommon that dogs with submissive roles eat stools of dominant dogs.

Dogs Learn Quickly. If you are a dog owner, you certainly know that your dog usually learn some things that are not good for him. For example, if you have punished your dog for something and if you forced him to put the nose in poop, he will also try to repeat it the next time when he see poop.

Also, if your dog is looking at you when you are cleaning his poop, he may want to copy this action. He may understand that he should also clean his own stool. The easiest way for your dog to do it is to eat his poop.

It is also possible that your dog picks up this behavior from other dogs.

Your Dog Is Sick. One of the reasons why your dog may be eating poop can also be a health problem. If your dog doesn’t get enough nutrients or if he has a problem with pancreas, he may start eating poop.

Pancreatic insufficiency is a condition when your dog doesn’t make enough digestive enzymes in pancreas, which can lead to starving. The most common symptoms of this condition are weight loss, vomiting, diarrhea and also poop eating.

The reason of eating poop may also be the parasites in your dog’s intestines. These parasites will absorb all the nutrients that your dog needs.

Also, if your dog is suffering from diabetes or if he has thyroid problems, it may increase the appetite of your dog, so he will start eating his own stool. If dogs are stressed for some reason, they may also want to eat poop, in order to relieve stress.

There’s also an interesting situation if there are several dogs in a household. When one dog is sick, other dogs usually eat the sick dog’s feces. Why is it happening? Well, it is an animal instinct to protect a weak dog from predators.

Your Dog Doesn’t Have a Proper Diet. Some dogs may be eating poop if they don’t get enough nutrients through their regular diet. Many experts claim that a deficiency of vitamin B is one of the most common reasons for your dog to eat poop.

If you don’t feed your dog regularly and if you don’t give him high quality dog food, he may want to try his own feces. If you notice that your dog is losing weight, you have to increase the amount of food that you give to him. Keep in mind that when a dog is hungry, he will eat whatever he finds.

There is one more theory which says that a dog that is overfed usually eat poop. An overfed dog is not able to absorb nutrients from his regular food.

Your Dog Wants Attention. Dogs usually want to attract attention of their owners. One of the ways to do that is to eat their own stools. Also, if dogs are feeling lonely or bored, they will want to play with their feces and they will eat them. Are your dogs depressed? As we have already said, if you don’t provide your dog a proper diet, he may want to eat his own stool.

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In these cases that we have mentioned, we can say that dog owners are responsible for a bad behavior of their dogs. As a dog owner, you have to take more care of your dog. You have to pay more attention to your dog, in order to avoid him feeling lonely. Also, you need to provide your dog a healthy and balanced diet that will give him all necessary nutrients. This way your dog will not eat poop anymore.

As we have already said, puppies are most prone to eat their poop. But, you don’t have to worry. If you also have a puppy, your puppy will probably change this behavior later when he grows up.

As a puppy, your dog may want to try everything in front of him, but most puppies stop eating poop very soon. It is best to watch carefully what your puppy is doing and to remove his waste every time. This way your puppy will not develop any bad habits.

Is It Necessary to Take Your Dog To The Vet?

There is a question whether you should take your dog to the vet if he is eating poop. We have already said that one of the most common reasons why dog is eating poop is a health problem. In this case it will be necessary to take your dog to the vet as soon as possible.

Also, if you notice that your dog prefers eating poop and that your dog is avoiding his regular dog food, it may be a problem. You should consult your veterinarian.

How To Prevent Your Dog To Eat Poop?

There are many things you can do to prevent your dog to eat poop. The first thing is to clean poop immediately after your dog. This way your dog will not have the opportunity to feel the poop smell. We all know that dogs are attracted by the scent of the food. If you have some other pets, you should clean after them as well.

Another important thing is to make your dog active during a whole day. You have to provide your dog toys that will entertain him and you can also provide him interesting activities and trainings that will stimulate his brain functions. This way your dog will not be bored.

It is also necessary to provide your dog a balanced and varied diet that is loaded with proteins and other nutrients. You should choose raw foods which contain digestive enzymes that are necessary for your dog to process the meals.

You should also avoid punishment because we have already told you that it may be one of the reasons why your dog eats poop.

You should check the stool of your dog regularly in order to see if there are any parasites in it.


As you have seen in this article, it is very common for dogs to eat their own feces. It usually happens to puppies, but most of them change their behavior when they grow up. They are still some of the cutest puppies though even if they do odd things. However, there are adult dogs that are also eating poop.

There are many reasons that may cause this behavior. As we have already said, dogs are scavengers in nature and they can eat whatever they find, even if you may not like it. Also, we have mentioned that many health issues may be the cause of eating poop.

If your dog has pancreas insufficiency or parasites in his intestines, he will be more likely to eat his own poop. If you don’t provide your dog a proper nutrition, he will be hungry and he might eat his feces.

Sometimes the cause of eating poop may be a lack of attention that your dog is receiving from you. If your dog is bored or if he is feeling lonely, he may want to try his poop. Because of that you should pay more attention to your dog. Also, if your puppy has seen that other dogs are eating poop, he will easily pick up this behavior.

As you can see, there are many reasons why your dog may be eating poop. In most cases you will be able to help your dog. As a dog owner you are responsible for your dog’s diet and for his overall health. You should know that your dog needs attention and love.

Sherry Morgan

Sherry Morgan has been a lover of animals for most of her life. She was introduced by her parents to first pet Kelly, a Collie, when she was three. Today, Sherry heads Petsolino, a website devoted to produce expert content on animals and how to take care of them. Her house is now home to two dogs, two guinea pigs and a cat.
Sherry Morgan

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