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Why Does My Dog Eat Grass?

It's a pretty common sight to most dog owners. Your dog, for some reason, rushes out into the yard, heads for the nearest patch of the green stuff and chows down. A little while later, the grass (and some other... stuff) makes the inevitable return. Have you ever wondered why? Read on!

Grass Eating 101

You, like many other dog parents, also find it extremely worrying when you see your dog eating grass and then vomit afterwards.

This is known as pica, a condition characterised by eating things that are not food. Pica could be an indication that your dog might have some sort of nutritional deficiency but is most times a signal that your dog is bored, especially if it is still a puppy or not yet an adult.

Even wild dogs are known to eat grass, and most veterinarians say that it is quite normal behaviour that does not cause too many issues in dogs.

Other Reasons Why Your Dog Might Be Eating Grass

Some people believe that dogs eat grass when they don’t feel well and do this to make themselves vomit and then feel better. Others again, shrug off this idea, stating that dogs aren’t clever enough to know when and how to treat an upset stomach.

Studies conducted, show that most dogs aren’t sick before they eat grass, or don’t seem to be ill. Fewer than 10% of dogs, in fact, seem to be ill before they eat grass, and many of them don’t vomit after eating grass.

Other suggestions include that a dog might eat grass to treat worms, to improve indigestion, and also to fulfil a nutritional need, such as lack of fibre. One case study reported a miniature poodle that had eaten grass and vomited afterwards, every day for seven years! The owner adjusted the dog’s diet to contain more fibre, which resulted in the dog stopping eating grass altogether, after just three days!

Another reason why your dog eats grass, of course, could simply be because he/she likes the taste and texture of it!!

Should I Prevent My Dog from Eating Grass, and How Would I Do That?

Although most professionals agree that eating grass isn't harmful, it’s the toxic pesticides and herbicides that might be on the grass, that could pose problems for dogs after they eat it.

If you think your dog is eating grass through boredom, then start enjoying some fun activities with him/her. like kicking a ball around or tossing a Frisbee. You could also buy your dog a really strong chew toy that could help to keep him occupied for hours during the day.

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