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Sunday, February 21, 2010

ASK THE VET: Solutions for Dogs that Eat Pet Droppings

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Punk World

Dear Ask the Vet: 

My dog likes to eat poop. Not just dog poop, but any poop. She eats her own, the other dogs' poop, and even cat poop from our cat's litter box. I have to keep her out of there or she will feast on the stuff. Yuck!

Why does my dog seem to be drawn to eating poop? And what can I do to stop her? My vet tried some type of pill to make her own poop taste bad, but she actually learned to like the taste and did not stop trying to eat it. When she is on leash, this is not a problem, but at the dog park or in a fenced yard I cannot always control this. I have to constantly watch her and the ground for landmines. Any tips? 

Thanks, Amy


Hi Amy:

This is a tough situation…..and a common one.  For starters…don't let your dog near the cat box.  Cat stool basically tastes like cat food and it is very high in fat and will cause a very sore belly.  That is not even considering the litter that is ingested along with the cat stool. 

You may want to try Adolf's meat tenderizer.   Sprinkle this on your dog's food and see if it helps.  For some reason, some dogs don't like the taste of the stool once they have eaten the meat tenderizer.  This suggestion will not be able to help when it comes to other dog's stool.

I would try using positive reinforcement when you are at the dog park…i.e. when you see your dog attempting to eat another dog's landmine, maybe you call his name and give a treat as a reward for leaving it alone.  It is a bad habit but does not mean that he is missing something from his diet.  Hope that helps!!

Dr. Jacki

Dr. Jacki, D.V.M.
ASK THE VET on All Things Dog Blog

For more information on Dr. Jacki and her practice, you may find her at  4 Paws House Calls. A personal appointment will likely provide more specific information on your dog and your specific questions.

Dr. Jacki's opinion or advice does not replace an actual exam with a veterinarian. 

Want to read more of Dr. Jacki's ASK THE VET columns? Here's a few links:

Helping Your Senior Dogs
Tummy Aches and Your Dog
Scooter Might Be Trying to Tell You Something

Coming soon, more advice and opinions from Dr. Jacki:

Strategies for Caring for Your Dog's Nails
Solutions for Chilly Morning Bathroom Runs

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