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Other Dog Behavior Issues

 

 

 

Coprophagia

 

This word may not be familiar to you, but when I say (poop eating) now your are saying, "ooh gross". Well most of our dogs have done this, I know mine have. You may just not know yours have. It is a common complaint that I hear about. People are usually embarrassed to ask about it, but I do get asked.

 

There are a few reasons they may be doing this so I will give you a few things you can try to help get them to stop. Dogs may eat their poop or a cats for lots of reasons. It can be just because it taste good, not that you would think so. As hard as that is for us to imagine. If you have cats and a litter box you may find your dog trying to dig in it for goodies. To help with this problem when they are digging in the cat box, is to try and place the cat box where the dog (Can No)t reach it. Maybe on the other side of a gated off section of the house, or on a higher level making it hard for the dog to get to. Keeping all fecal matter picked up will help with this also, if it isn't there, they can't eat it.

 

They will sometimes develop this behavior out of boredom. Maybe you are gone for long hours during the day, or they are left in the yard for long periods of time. If you give your dog plenty of other things to occupy them, they are most likely to eat their fecal matter. Toys are a great distraction. If they have a toy that allows them to use their mind it may take them a while to figure out, so they will be concentrating on the task at hand and not eating pooh. Give them bones to chew on when they get bored, or a sand box they can dig in, and fill it with toys, when they dig one up they will be so surprised and happy that they will play with that for a while. If you can have a neighbor, maybe someone retired, and they can come by and play with your dog for a bit, they wouldn't be so bored. Make their environment a fun place to be with lots of excitement and maybe prevent this from happening.

Maybe it has been something they have been doing for a while, so now it has become a habit. This would mean that your dog eats their feces right after pooping. This happens with anxious dogs, hungry dogs, or in dogs whose bodies aren't digesting their food properly. If you can catch them doing this you can try to correct them and say "wrong" and pick it up. If they leave it alone you can offer them a reward. The offering of the reward will become more pleasing to them, than the eating of their pooh. You can also use "leave it" and if they have any previous dog training they will know what this means, and you can quickly pick it up and discard it. If you always have a treat handy and can catch them before they consume it, hopefully you will be able to break the habit.

Some dogs will eat their pooh because they don't want you to know they have gone potty. Some dog parents will yell, scold, hit their puppy when they have gone potty in the house. This usually happens during the potty training phase. We yell "NO!" when we catch them going potty, instead you should make a loud clapping sound,or some kind of loud starttling noise so when they stop to look at you, pick them up or lead them to the desired potty area. If you yell "NO!" every time they start to potty you are actually teaching them that it is a bad thing. So they will learn to hold it in when you are around, or they will eat it as soon as they do go so you don't know they have gone. Either reason is not good. If it is a potty training issue, you can seek advise from a professional trainer, or search it on the web,but I am sure your local pet trainer will be glad to give you some advise on this issue.

You can also try to feed the eater pineapple. I have known this to work in a lot of dogs. I am not exactly sure why but pineapple makes their pooh taste bad. This is a more natural thing to feed your dog than the products you purchase from a pet store. No matter what method you use, supervision is the key to all of them. If you can't watch them, you can't stop them. Good Luck.