If you catch your puppy eating the feces of another dog, immediately putting a stop to it is essential or it could become a hard-to-break habit. Eating feces is also known as coprophagia, and as a puppy parent, it's your job to figure out what triggers the behavior so you can properly deal with it.
A puppy who's hungry and doesn't have access to food might resort to eating another dog's feces. By feeding your puppy a little more food so he's not hungry, you might break him from this behavior. If the type of food you're feeding your furry pal is inappropriate or low in quality, it might also make him eat the feces of other dogs. He might be doing this to get the nutrients that his food is lacking. Consult a veterinarian to determine the correct diet for your puppy.
Your puppy's feces-eating behavior might be triggered by a medical condition, such as thyroid disease, diabetes, inflammatory bowel disease and anemia. Intestinal parasites can also be to blame, because these rob nutrients from your dog, increasing his hunger. Have a veterinarian examine your puppy to rule out any medical conditions. If a medical condition is to blame, a veterinarian can make a diagnosis and recommend proper treatment, which can eventually put a stop to your puppy's yucky behavior.
Boredom or Stress
Your puppy might eat feces to keep his personal space clean or because he watched his mother do it. If your pet companion is bored, he might also eat feces just to stay occupied. Lack of attention and stress, stemming from things like loneliness and excessive confinement, can also trigger him to eat feces. By making sure that all your dog's needs are met, you can break his nasty habit. Exercise him, provide toys for him to play with, confine him for short periods and spend time with him.
Closely observing your puppy when you walk him can keep him from eating the feces of other dogs. Walk him on a leash, and if you catch him going near another dog's feces, gently tighten the leash and say "leave it." When your pet companion gets the message, praise and treat him lavishly. Then give him a command, such as "sit," to distract him and reward him again after he obeys. With consistency, he'll forget all about investigating stools and learn that listening to you has pleasant consequences that are more rewarding.
Kimberly Caines is a well traveled model, writer and licensed physical fitness trainer who was first published in 1997. Her work has appeared in the Dutch newspaper "De Overschiese Krant" and on various websites. Caines holds a degree in journalism from Mercurius College in Holland and is writing her first novel.