Have you wondered why your dog is eating grass? Is it unhealthy?
The more important thing is that if consuming grass can harm or influence it's health? Perhaps even some of you found this article because after eating grass, your dog is vomiting. Don't worry, you are not alone in this concern.
Dogs consuming grass is one of the forms of Pica that is a technical term for the disorder: eating something that isn’t food. In the severe cases, pica is a sign of the nutritional deficiency. However, it can be just a symptom of boredom especially when your dog is a puppy.
In fact, it's natural for dogs to eat grass that the studies in the wild demonstrated. The pica caused by eating grass doesn't come with too many problems. Even according to vets, it's only a normal behavior of dogs.
Can dogs eat grass?
According to many experts, grass itself isn't harmful to your dog. However, lawns covered by the quite toxic pesticides and herbicides are another problem.
Thus, to ensure the safety of your dog, the plants and grass in the place where your dog usually plays and has activities shouldn’t contain the dangerous pesticides. The ASPCA's Animal Poison Control Center will provide you the information and the names of the toxic and non-toxic plants.
Furthermore, when you and your dog come to a public area, you need to pay attention to the warning signs which let you know if there are chemicals applied the grass.
Why do dogs eat grass?
The causes of this problem vary, but you can refer to some of them below:
Suffers the gastrointestinal upset:
Your dog eats grass while suffering the digestive upset to try to make it throw up. It's almost frantic to perform this behavior. It will immediately run outside and eat grass uncontrollably. This is normal, and it can happen about 2 times per year, although, for human, this is a sign of illness. After consuming a small amount of grass, your puppy may vomit. This is quite normal and expected.
Eating grass also helps your dog decrease gastrointestinal upset such as bloating, gas, and nausea.
Removes the intestinal worms:
According to a study performed in the wild, dogs eating grass with the purpose of maximizing the intestinal motility as well as eliminating the intestinal parasites.
Fulfills the nutritional requirement:
Dogs tend to eat anything has nutritional value. And grass is a rich source of fiber or roughage. Besides, there are others such as phytonutrients, potassium, chlorophyll, and digestive enzymes which are what a dog is looking for. It's not strange when your dog eats grass. Dogs just choose a few specific types of grass without eating desperately.
Consider eating grass as a fun behavior:
Sometimes, the answer to the question “why do dogs eat grass?” is only for fun. Not just dogs but also wild dogs including dingoes, coyotes, and wolves consider eating grass as normal behavior when they are bored.
How to stop your dog from eating grass?
As I mentioned, dogs eating grass is a normal behavior. You have to determined the cause to be boredom. Below are a few things you can do.
If the cause is the tired feeling, perhaps it doesn't have enough exercise or the outside activities. At the weekend, you can organize a small event for your dog with your little boys and girls. It both provides energy and has a lot of fun memories.
You just need to take your dog out walking or tossing a Frisbee. In general, any interactive game can add energy or a sturdy chew dog toy is also useful to keep it away from the bored feeling.
When it comes to the daily eating routine, you have to reevaluate its diet. You should know that the regular gastrointestinal upset may be the sign of you feed your dog the wrong foods. Even the high-quality dog foods you give your dog may be the cause. Its really important to look at all possible reasons.
If your dog has a nutritional deficiency, try changing to a new healthy diet high fiber and either high-protein dog food or low-protein dog food.
It's best to change entirely from kibble and canned foods to raw dog food. If you can't plan a new diet for your dog, why don't you ask the help of your holistic veterinarian?
You can try adding digestive enzymes and probiotics to your dog food. While probiotics take responsibility for reseeding and fortifying the beneficial bacteria in the gut, the digestive enzymes offer your dog what its entrails or the guts should have.
These are a high source of protease, lipase, and amylase which are used to process food efficiently.
If it's only a behavior, there is no need to stop your dog to consume grass. However, you must ensure that your lawn is free of chemicals, herbicides, and pesticides.
Ensure a healthy life for your dog:
Dogs can eat grass without toxic pesticides and herbicides, and that’s only a normal behavior excepting some individual cases. That can be a sign of suffering the gastrointestinal upset, or when your dog wants to remove the intestinal worms.
When feeling bored, dogs can consume grass or its body requires the nutritional value of grass.
Each case has the different solution. For instance, to get rid of the bored feeling, give it more exercise and physical activities. If you feed it the wrong foods, just plan a new diet with more fiber content.
Hope you have the answer to the question “why do dogs eat grass?” Please let me know what you are thinking in the comment section below.