Exploring with a puppy is great fun. But the clumsy four-legged friend’s urge to discover can tarnish the joy. Especially in puppies who have an uncomfortable habit of eating feces. We explain why the puppy eats feces and how you can wean the young dog from eating feces.
Why Does the Puppy Eat Feces?
Dogs of puppy age are explorers: just as small children like to touch everything, puppies take everything in their mouths when they go for a walk. Whether kernels, pine cones, handkerchiefs, plastic parts, cigarette butts, snails, or their own or someone else’s feces – the puppy examines it in the mouth.
Some things he swallows, others he spits out again. The older the puppy gets, the more it will release on its own. In most cases, it is mere curiosity that will get the puppy to eat feces. Fortunately, most young dogs lose interest in eating poop over time. It is important that you educate your four-legged friend accordingly so that he loses his appetite for the disgusting food. By the way: Many puppies don’t care which animal the droppings come from. They eat the droppings of their own species or other animals, some even their own.
Prevention: Walk the Streets Without Eating Feces
It is particularly important in hygiene education to always be one step ahead of the puppy. If you see a pile by the wayside, distract your puppy. For example, lure him around it with food or change direction before your companion notices the disgusting temptation. If he is already running towards it, keep the leash short and lure him to you. Always remember to positively reward him with a treat as soon as he follows you. Remove feces from other animals – cats, foxes, rabbits – in your garden immediately so that your four-legged friend does not get a taste for it. Some owners swear by giving their dog something strong-smelling before going out together. A piece of Harz cheese or green rumen would be possible. However, this should only help in rare cases with puppies.
React Correctly When the Puppy Eats Feces
If you recognized the danger too late, react quickly! If possible, pull your dog away from the source of the evil and give an interruption signal such as “Ugh!” Or “Out!”. If he follows, reward him with a treat. Attention: Pulling on the leash should be avoided in everyday life if possible. You can use it to eat feces when your dog is about to stand in front of a pile. Thanks to the leash, you can prevent him from having a bite. Practice by saying “Ugh” whenever you walk past a pile as soon as your four-legged friend wants to sniff at it. At the same time, keep them at a distance and reward them afterward.
Attention on your part and timing is critical. Of course, this also applies to eating stones, cigarette butts, or plastic.
This is Why Puppy Eating Feces is so Dangerous
No question about it: eating feces is disgusting and many dog owners feel sick just watching. But that’s not the only problem with poop-eating puppies. Because there can be numerous pathogens in the piles. In addition, many dogs react to feces with diarrhea. If the puppy continues to eat feces unhindered, it may continue to do so into adulthood. For an overview of the health risks of dogs eating feces, see this article: What to do if the dog eats feces? If your four-legged friend is constantly nose-down, talk to your veterinarian about a suitable wormer for puppies.