Let's face it – if you have a dog, it's very likely he or she eats poop.
There. I said it.

An unsavory topic for sure, but something the majority of dog owners have witnessed. Myself included.

One of our dogs in vengeful. If we have to go somewhere and don't take him with us, he's like “well, I'll show them!” and BRA-A-APP – there he goes, in the middle of the floor. Ticked off, I turn to grab a paper towel to pick it up with. I turn back around and it's gone.
Where did it go? It was just here three seconds ago!
The pooch took care of it, that's where.

(One time, I had to leave and go somewhere, so I headed out the door and shut it. A second later, I remembered something I forgot to take with me, so I went back inside. The dog did not hear me come back in, and there he was...taking his revenge out on me. I saw him walking down the hall going <Plip!...Ploop...PLOP!> as he walked across the floor. I let out some exclamation and he turned around with a look like a deer in the headlights. BUSTED! Okay, he didn't get a chance that time.)

So what's the deal?
Why do dogs carry this disgusting (to humans) behavior?
Are they trying to win bets from the other neighborhood dogs?
“Hey Butch, I'll give ya a bone if ya eat that poop over there!”
Hey...that's not a bad theory.....but no, that ain't it.

There are several reason why, according to PedMD.com:
1) New mom dogs clean up the stool from their puppies to keep the area clean.
2) Eating the refuse of animals like horses and cows contain nutrients that they might feel they need. But don't encourage it. Seeing a farm dog out in one of our Michigan fields enjoying a cow pie is not so far-fetched.

Those are two understandable reasons...but there are a good handful of others that could mean something deeper is wrong.
1) If they are feeling ill, eating their own feces could mean intestinal problems or diseases of the liver or brain. Other reasons could be parasites or lack of nutrition.
2) If you yell at your dog a lot, if you're away for an extended amount of time, or your dog is confined in a pen, his/her poop-eating may be caused by anxiety.
3) If they poop on the floor they may get worried that they'll be yelled at or punished...so they get rid of the evidence.

Okay so you're aware that your dog has this behavior...what are ya gonna do about it? There are several solutions:
1) When we watch TV or a movie, we like to snack. So do dogs. And the cat box is the perfect place for a quick fix. Keep the cat box elevated high enough so the cat can jump up there, but not the dogs.
2) Start training pups as soon as they are away from mom. Take them outside on a regular schedule.
3) Stop angrily punishing your dog. You can reprimand them without scaring them.
4) If your dog has been doing this for quite a while, go outside with him/her each time.
5) Give the dog a treat each time he poops and leaves it.
“Look, see? I didn't eat it! Whattaya gonna give me?"
You give him a treat, of course (NO, NOT CAT POOP....give him a doggy treat).
6) There are dog snacks that are made to discourage poop-eating...it makes their little piles less appealing.
7) A constant supply of toys and bones may keep them too pre-occupied to 'clean up' after themselves.

Next time you're cuddling your dog, make sure you smell its breath...'cause they will wanna lick your face. And if your dog is a notorious dung hound, you will definitely not enjoy it.




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