Coprophagia or Poop Eating… why?!

Coprophagia or Poop Eating… why?!

   Why, why, why?!? Why do dogs eat poop? Poop eating, or more politely called Coprophagia, is perfectly normal among dogs and it’s more common than you might think. What can you do to discourage it?

Why DO dogs eat poop anyway?

Your adorable little Morkie, Yorkie or Maltese has a dark secret: he eats his own POOP!!! Eating poop, or coprophagia, is common among canines and it’s normal. Vets and other animal experts aren’t sure why dogs do this, but here are some of the possibilities.

Dogs are natural-born scavengers.  Since the beginning of time, they’ve survived by scavenging and eating scraps. And yes, Morkies come from that same wolf-stock 🙂

Mother dogs automatically clean up.  With a litter, a female Morkie – or any other dog – will clean up the nest by eating waste, including the newborns’ poops.  

Dogs who are punished for potty accidents, hide the evidence. Sometimes, if a dog is punished too harshly (like rubbing his nose in an “accident”) he’ll want to hide the evidence.  It’s sad that he is that terrified of punishment.

Missing enough vitamin B?  Poop eating could be a response to missing elements in the dog’s diet. Feeding a high quality food can help.

Negative attention is better than no attention.  Is your Morkie lonely or bored? Looking for ANY kind of attention even if it’s scolding? That could be another reason for Coprophagia, or poop eating in your Morkie.

Your dog is just plain hungry. Perhaps she’s not getting enough food, or has worms or other parasites that are taking all the nutrients from her food, leaving little for the dog.  Or if you’re only feeding once a day, that may not be enough for your Morkie – try dividing the food into several portions and serve throughout the day.

Dogs just like it! No logic here but poop is warm, moist and chewy…. or makes a good poopsicle in the winter, and dogs are, after all animals.

It’s a challenge, but try not to overreact

Your attitude is important in resolving this problem with your Morkie. Despite how disgusting this habit is, try to keep in mind that overreacting doesn’t help.

Yelling at your Morkie doesn’t help, either.

a veterinarian can help you manage your dog's poop eatingStart here to put a stop to poop eating

So how do you curb this problem?

First, check with your vet and if your dog is not suffering from parasites and seems to be well nourished.

Your Vet will check for any other problems that might be a physical reason why dogs eat poop.

    3 ways to discourage poop eating

    1. Put something in your dog’s food that makes the poop taste bad. OK really bad, to the dog.  

    Canned pumpkin (pure pumpkin, not pie filling) added to his dinner, about a teaspoon for small dogs, makes the poop very unappealing (although this method does take some time to kick in).

    Pineapple is another additive you can put on your Morkie’s food in just a small amount for big results.

    Or, add something unappealing but not dangerous to the poop, after he has gone potty. You could try covering the poop with hot sauce. It won’t hurt him but he definitely won’t like it.  You can also try lemon juice.

     

    2. Try adding probiotics to your Morkie’s diet.

    Probiotics – beneficial little microorganisms – support your dog’s  health in several ways, including balancing his digestion so that poop isn’t so appealing any more.

    Probiotics are found naturally in foods like yogurt, kefir, raw buttermilk, and certain soft cheeses, or you can buy probiotic supplements.

    Your Vet may sell them, or check online. Do some research first to make sure it’s a quality brand.

     

    3. Try a commercial product to stop poop eating.

    These are special blends of ingredients that help end the poop eating problem. Most contain some natural ingredients including yucca, parsley, chamomile and proprietary enzymes.

    These additives don’t alter the normal digestion of your Morkie; they simply add scents and tastes that dogs hate.

    Popular brands include

    Miracle Pumpkin!

    Here’s one thing that’s worth keeping on hand when you have a dog: canned, pure pumpkin. This isn’t the pumpkin pie type, its just all natural pumpkin puree. The organic version is even better.

    Now here’s the miracle: pumpkin helps dogs naturally overcome diarrhea AND constipation. It’s a great form of fiber, and will settle tummies too.

     

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