Sooner or later it happens to all of us. Although we swear that our dog would never do it and that it’s just something those disgusting problem dogs do, one day you look down and BAM! Your dog is tongue deep in a big steaming pile of his furry buddy’s business.
It’s a shameful day when you learn that your dog is not the civilized canine you thought he was and that he’s being labeled one of those poop eaters.
First we go through denial and tell ourselves, “It was just one this one time.”
Then confusion, “How could he?”
Followed by disgust, “Ahhhh, stop licking my face!”
Then finally acceptance, “Yes, my dog’s a poop eater . . . and we love him anyway.”
Why Dogs Like the Forbidden Delicacy
There’s much speculation as to why our dogs would so willingly eat their own and other dog’s poop (for all you who like funky sounding technical terms it’s called Coprophagia). Some say it’s to fill a nutritional void in the dog’s diet, others believe it’s just dogs being the scavengers they’ve always been, or it could be an attention getting (or even boredom) behavior.
Finding the cause is usually pretty tricky and sometimes there is no real evident reason. Maybe some dogs are just into it (kind of like some of our weird human fetishes – you know who you are) and there is no rational explanation.
One thing’s for certain, it’s pretty darn gross.
Is Eating All That Poop Bad
The silver lining to having a poop eater (if you want to see it) is that most of the time eating poop is not going to harm your dog. The exception is if your pooch eats the poop of another dog with a parasite.
Most of the time our disgust is the only really negative side effect. So although you may throw up in your mouth a little every time you see Rover chow down on his own waste, he’s probably doing just fine.
Ok, we now know why your dog may be sampling the forbidden brown fruit and we can agree we’re all thoroughly disgusted, so how the hell do we stop it?
The good news is that in many cases it’s pretty easy to treat – at least for your dog eating his own poop. I’m not real sure on the scientific reasons why this works but if you feed your dog some pineapple or spinach he may stop. I guess there is something in both pineapple and spinach that makes poop taste bad . . . or worse.
Sounds bizarre, I know, but I’ve had a number of clients try this with success – much more than with bottled remedies in pet stores and vets offices. It has no side effects, is cheap and easy to administer so why not give it a try.
This can stop your dog from eating his own poop but not other dogs. So if you have a multi-dog household and one poop eater, everyone gets pineapple.
Another obvious solution for all you people with a fence who are guilty of just letting the dog in the back yard to do his business is to supervise and pick up all that poop for crying out loud. It’s definitely time to get all of those yummy land mines out of the yard – as if you needed this to motivate you to do it.
Like it or not, some dogs are going to eat poop. Sometimes we can get rid of it by providing a good diet and supervision, but some of us will just have to come to terms with the fact that we’ve got “one of those dogs.” It’s may be gross and embarrassing but it’s probably not doing anything harmful to your dog.
It’s just something you might have to learn to live with and hopefully laugh at with other dog owners when you bump into each other with a shopping cart full of pineapples.