Is Your Dog Eating Poop? - The Symptoms of Coprophagia What to do when you find your dog eating poop

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Is Your Dog Eating Poop? - The Symptoms of Coprophagia

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Wonder if your dog is eating poop when your back is turned? There are a few subtle symptoms of coprophagia, or consuming feces, that you can learn at PetCareRx.

There are actually very few side effects or symptoms of coprophagia, because it does not cause much damage. Nonetheless, many people find it repulsive to see a dog eating poop. Also, it is possible for dogs who are unprotected from worms to contract them from infested feces, but it is a simple and common practice for pet owners to keep them up-to-date on worm and parasite preventatives.

Bad Breath is a very common symptom of coprophagia, because the smell of the feces may linger in the dogโ€™s mouth. This may be counteracted by brushing the dogโ€™s teeth with toothpaste specifically formulated for dogs. The bad breath should fade away after the behavior has been successfully addressed.

Intestinal Worms are often found in the excrement of dogs. If the worms and larva are present in feces consumed by an uninfected dog, the dog may become infected. Because a dog prone to coprophagia has a slightly greater likelihood of contracting worms, it is important to safeguard them with a worm preventative, such as Heartgard Plus. Also have your dog checked twice a year by your veterinarian for worms.

Kitty Litter Sickness can occur if the dog frequently consumes feces mixed with kitty litter. The small stones used in kitty litter are engineered to clump together when wet. If a dog consumes too many of these stones they can interfere with digestion, causing severe diarrhea and vomiting, and possibly will require surgical removal, which is risky because they tend to be scattered throughout the intestines. Cat poop seems to be very attractive even to dogs that do not usually eat poop, so keep an eye on dogs when a litter box is nearby.

Human Disgust is a very common response to coprophagia, and can really interfere with the relationship between dog and human. It is difficult to want to snuggle with a dog whose breath smells like poop, especially after catching them in the act. Unfortunately, humans do not always know how to behave in response, and may make the anxiety of the animal worse by yelling and scaring the dog. Humans have even been known the euthanize the animal.

This information is for informational purposes only and is not meant as a substitute for the professional advice of, or diagnosis or treatment by, your veterinarian. Always seek the advice of your veterinarian or other qualified professional with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard or delay seeking professional advice due to what you may have read on our website.

Your dog might be a wonderful companion, but like all other canines, he probably has his share of bad habits. Dogs do a bunch of gross things, like drinking toilet water, licking themselves inappropriately in front of guests, and rolling around in the mud. Of all these habits, the most disgusting one has to be eating poop.Dogs are a whole different species, so itโ€™s natural we do not understand all the things they do. Their intention with eating poop is not to gross us out. There are several reasons why your pet is eating excrement and understanding them can help you stop him from continuing with this nasty habit.

What causes your dog to eat poop?

Coprophagia, or the act of eating poop, is common among puppies. It is their way of exploring their surroundings and everything in it. If your dog is consuming poop, then a visit to the vet is advised to rule out health issues such as:

  • Nutrient deficiency
  • Parasites
  • Malabsorption syndromes
  • Health conditions like thyroid disease or diabetes that may cause a spike in appetite
  • Influence of medications like steroids

Apart from these reasons, dogs can be influenced to eat poop due to environmental triggers or behavioral issues. These include:

  • Keeping your pet confined for long periods in small spaces can induce this habit
  • Dogs who are left alone in basements or kennels typically eat their poop
  • Some dogs eat poop as a way to get attention from their owners
  • Anxiety and stress can trigger your pet into developing this habits. Harsh punishment can cause dogs to become afraid and eat their own poop as a way of eliminating evidence so they are not punished more
  • Keeping your petโ€™s food in close proximity to its excrement can confuse him. He may find it hard to differentiate between the smells of food and poop

How to stop your dog from continuing this habit?

Once the vet has inspected your dog, they will give you strategies on how you can stop him from eating poop. The most common cause is vitamin deficiency, so the doctor will prescribe some vitamin supplements that may help. Enzyme supplements may also be given if it is known your dogโ€™s diet is low in fats and proteins and has high carbohydrate content.At home, the best way to get your dog to stop eating poop is managing his environment and through training.

  • Keep your home clean so your dog has no access to poop whenever the urge rises
  • While on walks, pick up his poop immediately after he is finished
  • Teach your dog to follow commands like โ€œcomeโ€ or โ€œleave itโ€
  • Give your dog plenty of healthy, tasty treats so he loses interest in eating poop
  • If you also have a cat, keep the litter bow away from your dogโ€™s reach

The habit of eating poop is revolting, but it is important to treat your dog with love and compassion while training him to stop.

Is Your Dog Eating Cat Feces? Hereโ€™s How to Stop It

Believe it or not, your dog eating your catโ€™s feces or poop is not that uncommon. Most dogs will at some point eat cat poop if the opportunity arises. In fact the habit is so common that it even has a name; Coprophagia. While the exact reason for why dogs eat cat feces is not known, one theory suggests that dogs can smell undigested food in cat poop and think that itโ€™s good enough to eat.If you own both a cat and a dog and your dog is eating out of the litter box, here are a few tips to help you get it to stop:

Deny access:

One of the easiest ways to stop your dog from eating cat poop it to keep the litter box out of reach. You can place the litter box on a high-shelf which the cat can access but not the dog. Placing a baby gate around the little box can keep a big dog away while the cat is still able to fit through the bars and get to the box. You could also place the little box in a cabinet with a small opening so only the cat can enter and not the dog.

Clean up:

Another way to stop your dog from eating out of the litter box is to clean it out as soon as your cat has used it. This might not always be possible but you could schedule regular intervals to clean out the box to prevent the dog snacking out of it.

Train your dog:

While inside the house it is easier to take measures to stop your dog from eating cat feces, it could be a bit more challenging when taking a walk outdoors. If you see your dog going towards cat poop use a firm โ€œnoโ€ or โ€œstopโ€ command. When trained from an early age dogs are very obedient to these commands. If your dog has already picked up a bit of cat poop in its mouth you could always ask it to โ€œdrop itโ€. These commands are simple and easy for a dog to follow and should be taught to them while there are puppies. Make sure to use a stern voice to show that you mean business.

Muzzle up:

If all else fails then you will probably need to put a basket muzzle on your dog when out for walks or even in the house. Not all dogs are comfortable with the muzzle and some even get a bit of anxiety from it so save this as a last resort.It is not always easy to change a dogโ€™s behavior but with patience, love and positive reinforcement you will be able to succeed.

 
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Coprophagia (Ingesting Feces)

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