Dogs can suffer from all types of conditions. Some are just average and some are a bit gross! Coprophagia is a condition in which dogs eat their own feces or the feces of other animals. Considered normal behavior among dogs, it is still an unpleasant scene. This problem is not breed specific and even the most well-bred and well-trained dogs can dabble in the poop eating pool!
There are many reasons for Coprophagia. This action can be traced back to the earliest time of canine domestication. One of the most important and seemingly reasonable is the action which is performed by a mother dog. Her doing this is necessary for puppies to learn to defecate and helps keep the nest clean.
Even the smallest of puppies also eat feces. Some dog experts think this may be the puppy’s way of learning about his or her environment. Most often they outgrown this behavior by the age of six months. If your puppy is engaging in this activity, DO NOT rub his or her nose in the feces, and DO NOT physically punish your puppy. Physical discipline can cause aggression and is counter-productive. Remove your dog from the situation and district him or her with a toy or some fun play. Be sure to clean up any poop as soon as possible and do not let your dog have access to cat feces. Although reviled by humans, this seems to be a dog delicacy. Yuck!
Coprophagia can also be related to a physical condition. If a dog is starving, malnourished, or suffering from malabsorption, eating his or her own feces or the feces of other animals can be addressed through veterinary treatment. Any starving dog will eat all things near. A visit to the vet and a normal diet will be the solution to this type of Coporphagia.
If a dog’s body is not processing the food properly he or she could feel hungry on an almost constant basis. There are many different reasons for malabsorption. A veterinarian can diagnose any of these conditions. Trying to treat your dog without direction could cause more problems in the end. Although veterinary visits can be expensive, a problem left untreated can become very expensive. In addition, a dog will continue to eat feces and perhaps deteriorate physically.