Amongst all of the weird things that dogs do, eating grass is up there towards the top. Dogs are not cows and get no nutritional value from grass, so why do they consume it so frequently? They are many reasons why your dog is eating grass and it might be more common than you think. In fact, one small-scale study observed 49 dogs that all had access to grass and plants. A whopping 79% of the dogs ate a snack from the plants or grass at some point during the study. Even though it seems like it could be harmful or dangerous for your pooch to be chomping down like a lawnmower, take comfort. This activity is completely normal and presents no danger to your furry friend.
WHY IS MY DOG EATING GRASS
While there is no concrete answer as to why your dog is eating grass, experts and scientists have a few theories that could be applied to your pet. If your dog is a constant grass consumer see if one of these reason applies to him.
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Pica is a condition where animals, or people, eat things that aren’t food. This can be a result of missing nutrients from a diet or even from boredom. If your dog is eating out of boredom try getting him interested in another activity such as fetch or chewing on a chew toy.
Lack of dietary nutrients
When a dog is missing out on key nutrients he will try and find them elsewhere. Most commonly, he will turn to grass. While grass isn’t bad for your dog to eat, it is not a substitute for other important vitamins and minerals. If you suspect your dog is eating grass to compensate for lack of nutrients try switching his dog food. A natural raw food diet is one that can provide the best nutrition for your dog. This type of dog food contains 99% meat/organs/animal fats. Eating a raw, natural diet will ensure the best health of your dog.
Dogs can suffer from many intestinal conditions such as worms, constipation, or diarrhea. When this is the case, your dog may start eating grass to help regulate things. Grass does have a small amount of nutritional fiber, but not enough to really help your dog feel more comfortable or be more regular. Again, the best solution is to change your dog food to something that provides more nutrition for your pup.
Some people think that dogs eat grass when their stomachs are upset to induce vomiting and make themselves feel better. Others say that dogs are not smart enough to know that grass will make them throw up. In reality, most evidence suggests that dogs that eat grass aren’t actually sick beforehand and less than 25% of dogs vomit regularly after eating grass.
Most experts will say that eating grass really isn’t harmful, however, if you let your dog graze frequently be aware and cautious of the herbicide and pesticides that are frequently used on lawns. They are very toxic and can make your dog sick. Also, be aware that many house and garden plants are also toxic. You can use the ASPCA’s Poison Control Center website as a great guide to toxic and non-toxic plants. This way your dog can graze in peace.