Pets

Ask a vet: Why some pets make a snack of their poop

Author: Canadian Living

Pets

Ask a vet: Why some pets make a snack of their poop

This story was originally titled "Ask a Vet" in the September 2009 issue. Subscribe to Canadian Living today and never miss an issue!

Question: My dog has recently started eating the cat poop out of the litter box! I read somewhere that animals will do this when they are deficient in dietary nutrients or vitamins. Is this true?

Dr. Marie McKibbin
: It's hard to imagine why dogs are attracted to poop, but they are. They will roll in it and eat it, and they aren't fussy about the kind. Dogs will even eat their own droppings, especially if they are frozen (a "poopsicle" treat). This is normal dog behaviour. Mother dogs clean their pups' back ends to stimulate bowel movements and eat the fecal material. Only rarely is this a sign of a health problem or nutritional deficiency. If your dog is not too thin and shows no other signs of illness, the best solution is to scoop the litter as soon as possible or put it somewhere out of grazing range.



Dr. Marie McKibbin practices at the Owen Sound Veterinary Clinic, Owen Sound, Ont.
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Pets

Ask a vet: Why some pets make a snack of their poop

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