Why Do Puppies Eat Their Poop (And Other Poop)? What To Do

A cute black Schnauzer puppy pooping in the grass.

Some puppies are attracted to the scent and taste of poop. It may be their own poop or the poop of other animals.

If you notice your puppy eating poop, you should put a stop to the behavior and find the reason why your dog is eating it. 

Why is my 9-week-old puppy eating poop? The most common reasons why puppies eat poop are nutritional deficiencies, stress, and boredom. At nine weeks old, puppies are weaned and starting to explore the world around them. They may also eat their poop and the poop of other animals because they are curious.

If your puppy is eating poop and you are wondering about the reason, read on to learn more. 

Coprophagia in Dogs

Coprophagia is a term used to describe the act of a dog eating feces. It is actually common for dogs to eat their own feces and the feces of other dogs and animals.

There are many reasons why a dog may do this.

Why Do Dogs Eat Poop?

The most common reason why dogs eat their own poop or the poop of other dogs is that they are bored or stressed.

Certain environmental factors, mental factors, and even physical factors can also cause dogs to eat different types of poop. 

The Poop Of Other Dogs

Dogs can eat another dog’s poop out of curiosity, because they like the taste, or because they are hungry and have a nutritional deficiency.

They may also eat poop because of a natural instinct to keep their environment clean.

Other Animal Poop

For dogs who are missing certain enzymes or vitamins from their diets, their bodies will crave these nutrients, and they will search for them.

Some animals’ diets are very nutritious, and sometimes their waste can contain the nutrients dogs are seeking. Dogs may eat the poop of other animals as a way to get these nutrients. 

On the other hand, some animals’ poop, such as cat poop and chicken droppings, just seem to be appealing to dogs, no matter how high-quality their own diet happens to be.

Why Is My Puppy Eating Poop?

Your puppy may be eating poop because he is not getting the nutrients he needs from his food.

Puppies require a lot of vitamins and minerals to grow properly, and if they are not getting them from their food, they will seek them out in other things.

Ensure you’re feeding the best possible diet to avoid having poop-eating behavior become a habit.

Can a Dog Get Sick From Eating Poop?

All types of animal poop can contain many different types of bacteria and even traces of residual medications that the other animal may have taken.

The poop can also contain remnants of things the animal may have eaten that could be hazardous to your dog. Parasites can also be transmitted in this way, so stopping the behavior is critical.

Will My Puppy Stop Eating Poop on His Own?

Your dog may stop eating poop on his own and even grow out of the behavior, but it is unlikely.

If you see your dog is eating poop regularly, put a stop to the behavior, remove the poop from the area where your dog is present, and try offering your dog more nutritious or balanced dog food.

Little brown-and-white puppy eating poop outside.

My Dog Ate Poop: How Do I Clean His Mouth?

The best way to clean your dog’s mouth after he has eaten poop is to use a toothbrush and toothpaste designed for dogs (here’s the kit I use).

You can brush your dog’s teeth to remove any remnants of poop in the dog’s mouth and to freshen his breath.

It’s best to get your puppy accustomed to this ritual as soon as possible because routine brushing is important not only for his dental health but for his overall health in general.

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How To Stop a Dog From Eating Poop

If your dog is eating poop, it is important to put a stop to the behavior. There are a few ways you can do that. 

Dog Eating Own Poop

If your dog is eating his own poop, take your dog outside to poop in a specific area, and then bring your dog away from that location so he can not access the poop to eat it.

Dispose of the poop in a sanitary way (the Doggie Dooley is a great option – a mini septic tank for dog waste that requires very little maintenance and keeps your yard free of stinky piles).

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You should also make sure your dog’s food is well balanced and nutritious to help relieve the urge to eat poop.

Dog Eating Other Dog’s Poop

If your dog is eating the poop of other dogs, you should keep your dog away from the areas where other dogs poop.

Be sure to let your dog know the behavior is not accessible, try to improve your dog’s diet, and provide more mental stimulation and socialization to ensure your dog is not bored.

Dog Eating Cat Poop

Keep your dog away from the cat’s litter box or any outside area where the cat may poop (find great ideas that really work here).

Improve your dog’s diet, and have your dog checked for parasitic worms that may be preventing your dog from getting the nutrients it needs.

Related Questions:

Why Does Pineapple Stop Dogs From Eating Poop?

While there is no proof that pineapple stops dogs from eating poop, the theory behind this method suggests that pineapple interacts with certain enzymes in dog poop to make poop taste bad when the dog eats it.

Why Do Dogs Eat Cat Poop?

Dogs often eat cat poop because there are certain nutrients in it that the dog is not getting from his own food and is craving. Some dogs eat cat poop out of curiosity or because they are drawn to the taste.

Final Thoughts 

It can be shocking and frustrating to watch your dog eat his own poop or the poop of other animals.

While this is a common problem, it can also be dangerous if the poop contains bacteria, parasites or other harmful things that could make your dog sick.

It’s a good idea to find the reason why your dog is eating poop so you can correct the behavior more easily.

Last update on 2022-09-30 at 04:13 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API