How to Keep Your Pup From Eating Poop

Your puppy will do a lot of weird things in their lifetime. From sleeping on their backs to sleeping on your pillow, your dog is bound to get into something they’re not supposed to. However, one of the more common problems with little pup, or new dogs, is poop eating. For some reason, dogs love eating poop. Or their friend’s poop. Or your cat’s poop. Either, it’s gross, and you want to stop it! 

The act of eating poop is called coprophagia. Around 24% of dogs will eat poop once in their lifetimes! Some people say it may be because of their ancestors, who used to eat poop to keep their housing area clean, or to keep parasites away from their poop. However, since your pup is a domesticated pup, there’s no need for poop eating anymore!

Why Is My Dog Eating Poop?

1. Your Pup Is Hungry!

There could be multiple reasons why your pup is eating their nasty poop. Most of the time, it just means they are hungry. They could be looking for snacks and treats, and for some reason they just find their own poop (or the cat’s poop) tasty. Sometimes, food isn’t fully digested, and it leaves your pup thinking that their poop is food!

2. Boredom

Some owners think that the cause of poop eating is boredom. If your pup has nothing to do, it may find poop eating as something to entertain themselves. They may also see poop as a treat of sorts, and finding poop causes them to be entertained, as a treat.

3. Poop Eating = Attention

If you yell at your puppy and chase them around the yard for eating their poop, they may start to think that it’s a game! They may start eating poop to get your attention, which is a habit you will want to break immediately. 

4. Diseases and Parasites

On the off chance your pup may be sick, it may be the reason why your furry friend had resorted to eating poop. Your pup could have contracted a parasite, causing them to eat poop. Your pup also may have digestive issues that cause them to need the “nutrients” in poop, or have an illness such as diabetes, Cushing’s disease or thyroid disease. Either way, you’ll need to go see a vet if you see your dog eating poop, no matter how hard you try to stop it!

How To Stop Your Dog From Eating Poop

Now that you know the whys, you’ll need to know how to stop your pup from eating poop! Here are a couple of common solutions that may help your pup with their nasty habit.

1. Remove The Poop!

This one may sound simply, but it helps a lot. For a few weeks, attempt removing all traces of poop that your pup may easily get to. This means frequently picking up all your pup’s poops, cleaning out the litter box, and any other traces of poop you can find. This will get your dog to know that poop is no longer a food source they can get to! 

2. Check Their Diet.

If your pup is eating poop due to a nutrition problem, it may be due to their diet. Make sure they’re eating a good brand of dog food, or if you’re making their meals, making sure they’re getting the right amount of nutrition. You may also want to consider adding more food, as they may still be hungry after meals. Consult with a vet to make sure your pup is getting the right amount of nutrition!

3. Keep Them Happy!

If your pup is eating poop due to boredom or to get your attention, you may not be giving your pup enough attention! Try playing fetch with them more often, or giving them toys to toss around. Also try going on a walk to tire your pup out! Also try to pet your furry friend more often, and even sit next to them on the floor. This may be all you need to do to keep your pup from eating their poop!

4. Supplements

If you’re worried that your dog is eating too much and need to find other ways to give them the nutrition they need, consider supplements. There are many commercial chewables that offer loads of vitamins and nutrients that your pup needs to stay happy and healthy! You can easily find these vitamins at a local pet store or online.

5. Poo-eating Deterrents 

There are some treats that make your puppy’s poop taste bad, so it stops them from eating their poop! There are many poo-eating deterrents on the market. Check out Chewy for some of these products. Always check with your vet to make sure that these treats are safe for your pup to eat!

Of all the gross things your dog does, you definitely want poop eating to be off the list. Finding out why your pup does these things may be all you need to stop your pup from being gross!

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Lovelia Horn

I’m a certified crazy dog mom, a physical therapist (for hoomans), writer, animal rescuer, and foster home provider. Together with my hubby Ryan, I’ve fostered and helped look for forever homes for over a hundred shelter dogs in the Southern Illinois area. I mostly work with Puppy Rescue 911, Inc., a certified animal rescue organization based out of Chester, IL (home of Popeye!)

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