The behavior of pets, especially dogs is unpredictable. One of them is the behavior of eating cat feces. This condition can be caused by various factors. However, do you know what is the reason why Do Dogs Eat Cat Poop: Animals Care.
Find out more about how to prevent and stop dogs from eating cat litter in this article.
What Does It Mean If a Dog Eats Cat Feces?
Coprophagy is a term used to describe the act of eating feces. Coprophagy is a scientific term when every living species feeds on feces, either dogs or humans.
Several health conditions can make a dog feel hungry all the time. This could be the reason they try to eat dirt from the sandbox. Some examples are Cushing’s Disease, Diabetes, and certain malabsorption intestinal disorders.
Usually, if your dog experiences any of these health conditions, you’ll notice other changes, such as weight gain and weight loss, increased thirst, more frequent urination, vomiting, or diarrhea.
What’s interesting about it?
When a puppy eats feces, it’s more out of curiosity and wants to play. Other dogs may eat feces simply because they taste good and smell very foul. It’s common for dogs to chew on things that smell bad, like worn socks, shoes, and dirty laundry, including underwear.
Why Do Dogs Eat Cat Poop?
Medical conditions such as anemia and malnutrition can be the reason why dogs eat cat litter. However, this is a rare cause. The reason can be triggered by intestinal or pancreatic problems. It could also be due to the drugs that dogs consume.
Cat litter eating behavior could be passed down to dogs genetically. Family members of dogs such as wolves are known to eat feces when unable to find prey.
In any case, they get some essential vitamins from impurities. Dogs have the same instincts as wolves, and this could be the reason why they eat cat litter.
When the puppy is young, the mother licks her bladder and intestines to stimulate her. He even eats garbage to keep the environment clean. So the behavior of dogs that feed on feces may have been learned from their mothers.
When a dog eats cat feces, it can be a sign that it is losing some vitamins in its diet. If you consider this as one of the reasons, then consult a veterinarian immediately.
It may sound strange, but some dogs love the taste of cat litter. This is especially true for puppies who love cat food. Depending on the cat’s food, its feces can contain a sufficient amount of protein and fat.
As already mentioned, dogs are scavengers, which means they can feel whatever they see, although the choice may seem surprising.
Dogs can decide to visit the sandbox because they are bored. They feel more excited when they visit it. If you think boredom is one of the triggers for dogs eating cat litter, then take a walk twice a day or so.
Playing with dogs outside can also be a distraction. They would rather play than visit the sandbox.
Stress and Anxiety
Just like humans, dogs can be stressed, frightened, and depressed. This often happens when the dog faces serious changes or is not doing well. Stress often results in compulsive behavior.
Here are some situations that can cause stress in dogs:
- Adoption of a new puppy or kitten by their owner
- Move to a new home
- Disease or death of the owner
- Separation from someone he loves
Some puppies suffer from separation anxiety every time their man leaves for work. When living alone, these dogs can do strange and unexplained things, such as tearing carpets, chewing furniture, and eating dirt or dirt.
Is cat litter bad for dogs?
Most dogs that eat cat litter look fine, but that may have a bad impact on their health. Eating cat litter increases the risk of dogs contracting harmful bacteria and parasites. It is even riskier because some bacteria such as Salmonella can be transmitted to humans.
Cat litter can be a problem for dogs if eaten in large quantities, such as intestinal blockages. However, most dogs do not eat large amounts of cat litter. Keep an eye on your dog to see if he has trouble defecating. Contact your vet if your dog has problems with defecation.
How to prevent dogs from eating cat litter?
Add Variety to the Dog Diet
The best food for dogs is raw meat. Of course, in the current state, few people can feed a dog with fresh raw meat for a variety of reasons. However, you can look for commercial dry foods made from raw meat ingredients.
If changing food doesn’t seem to be a good idea, or doesn’t help, try to enrich your dog’s food with digestive enzymes. The best source of this enzyme is raw green tripe. Also, adding probiotics is a good idea, because they stimulate the digestion of foods. There are many dietary supplements containing probiotics to choose from.
If you see a dog eating cat litter, the first thing to do is to eliminate the temptation. It’s a good idea to place a box of cat litter in places that your dog can’t reach.
For owners of small dogs, it should put a sandbox on a shelf, while owners of large dogs should consider laying in a narrow place where only cats can access them.
One of the best ways to prevent dogs from eating cat litter is to put a little chili sauce or pepper powder in a box of feces. Some poop-preventing sprays can cause a fresh breath smell on a cat’s poop box, so dogs are more likely to avoid it.
Help your dog appreciate its overall health and nutritional needs. You should pay attention while taking an active part in changing your dog’s diet through every stage of life.
Solve Gut Problems Dogs May Have
Malnutrition is not the only health reason. Other possibilities are related to the intestines. If you suspect there is an intestinal problem to blame for the dog’s new hobby, consulting a vet is highly recommended.
Play with Dogs All Day
If the dog digs feces due to boredom, you should try to enter the playtime more often throughout the day. If you have a backyard, take the puppy out and throw some toys into the catch-throwing game.
Or if they prefer to tug-of-war, grab a rope and do it. Playing with pets will expend energy, so they will not use the behavior of eating cat litter as a way to pass the time.
Take Your Dog for Walk Every Day
If your dog still eats cat litter even though extra playtime has been changed, consider taking it for a walk every day. Better yet, take your puppy for a walk while playing as often as possible. Boredom is not ideal and always leads to behaviors such as eating cat litter, so they will be lazy and choose to sleep.
Keep The Sandbox As Clean as Possible
If the sandbox does not have dirt in it, then the dog is unlikely to eat anything. If dogs tend to eat poop for fun, make it a priority to clean the cat’s box and its litter more often. Over time, your dog will learn that there is nothing in the sandbox that they can eat, so they will eventually stop looking for dirt.
Are Dogs Eating Cat Feces Malnourished?
Maybe it is, and maybe it isn’t. Of course, hunger can be one of the reasons for eating cat litter. However, this is not the only reason. In any case, if there is no obvious reason, it makes sense to revise the daily diet of puppies.
Make sure she gets high-quality food regularly. If your dog is consuming dry commercial food, try adding some raw materials with high digestive enzyme content or special dietary supplements. Also know about Are Tomatoes Toxic To Dogs.
Can Dogs Get Sick From Eating Cat Feces?
Yes, they can. Cat litter contains a lot of bacteria harmful to dogs. Some bacteria can cause a variety of infections. In addition, be aware of the risk of contracting parasites by obtaining eggs of parasites. They can also be present in cat litter. Eating cat litter is a high risk for dogs.
What Happens if We Let Dogs Eat Cat Feces?
In general, eating cat litter is not as dangerous to dogs as its owners believe. Cat litter consists of digested and half-digested cat food, perhaps even containing some essential nutrients.
However, if the cat has a hidden infection or worm, the puppy will become infected by eating its feces. Besides, this habit is rather annoying and disgusting. That’s why you should stop this as soon as possible.
When should I take my dog to the vet for eating cat feces?
Consulting a vet is a good idea. You should see a doctor immediately if you encounter situations such as the following:
- Dogs look sick or have symptoms of the disease
- You can’t solve the problem simply by improving your diet and training
- Dogs have eaten sick or infected cat litter
- Dogs have symptoms of intestinal parasitic infection
Pet dogs should be taken to the vet when they are constantly looking for cat litter. If she is still stressed even though you have tried all the tips, your vet can help diagnose the problem.