Why do Dogs Eat Grass in Bowling Green, KY?
Everyone who owns a dog has probably noticed that once in a while, they will eat grass. This might seem really odd to you since you know that dogs are not supposed to eat grass, and they largely eat meat. Many people are really worried when they notice their dog doing this and wonder if something is wrong with their dog’s health. To learn more about why dogs eat grass in Bowling Green, KY, keep reading.
Is Eating Grass Sometimes a Sign of Illness?
In some cases, dogs will eat grass because they are not feeling very well and think that this will help them to feel better. Dogs with irritated stomachs or with digestive issues might try to eat grass to make themselves feel better. You should be attentive to other symptoms like a lack of appetite, diarrhea, or blood in vomit or stools.
While grass eating is not actually a sign that anything is wrong with your dog, if they are not feeling well, they might show this behavior in an effort to help solve their underlying problem. Dogs that are always eating grass and vomiting might also have other digestive issues or problems with their diet that are causing this behavior.
You can always reach out to your veterinarian if you think that your dog is not acting like they feel well. Even if the grass eating is something that seems to be going on more frequently than usual without other symptoms, it might be wise to take your dog to see the veterinarian just to be safe.
Can Dogs Eat Grass Due to Anxiety?
Some dogs will chew on anything at all that they can put in their mouth if they are not feeling safe or secure. Chewing can be a comfort activity, and it can help your dog to cope with feelings of worry or fear. Some dogs will also eat grass due to boredom.
Eating grass can become a behavioral issue if your dog is hungry all the time as well. Make sure that you are feeding enough to your dog, especially if it is a puppy and is growing. Also, be sure that you are attentive to your dog’s need to have toys to play with and enough exercise.
If you have provided all of the right care for your dog’s nutritional needs and have made sure that they are not bored, you might want to take your dog to the veterinarian to have blood tests. Some kinds of more serious health issues could lead to this kind of behavior because your dog might feel like it is not getting enough nutrients. Anxiety can also require that your dog be put on medications to help them to feel less stressed on a daily basis.
Is Eating Grass an Instinct?
Dogs that are wild and your dog’s ancestors did not eat dog kibble. They hunted for food, and they had to get fiber from natural sources like grass. This is why dogs will still eat grass today, even though they are likely getting more than enough fiber from the kibble that you feed them. Eating grass is the only way that wild animal populations can get fiber in their diet.
Wild dogs and wolves show signs of grass in their stools, which means that wild animal populations are still engaging in this behavior. This means that your dog’s instinct to take this action might be stronger than other dogs. Some dogs will just eat grass out of a compulsion to do so, even if they do not need to ingest it for any reason. This is often why dogs who have eaten grass will throw it back up.
If your dog is eating grass and you do not want them to do so, make sure that you discourage the behavior with a firm command. Redirect your dog to other activities when they are trying to eat grass. You can also make sure that there is no grass for your dog to get into when you are not at home, and they are outside.
Most dogs will not eat so much grass that they get sick over and over, but there is no reason that you cannot discourage the behavior if you know that your dog is healthy and is just doing this out of habit. You do need to be sure that you are not overlooking health issues when you are discouraging this action, but if you are sure that your dog is healthy, you can stop them from eating grass if you wish.
Dogs Eat Grass to Aid in Digestion and Fiber in Their Diet
While your dog who is eating kibble probably does not need any extra help getting fiber into their diet, they might not know this. Many dogs will eat grass from time to time out of instinct or to try and resolve an upset tummy. Your dog might eat grass and throw it up, and usually, this is not anything to worry about.
If your dog is eating grass all the time or seems not to feel well at the same time, you should take your dog to the veterinarian for some tests and an exam. Some health issues can lead to your dog eating grass, and you will want to address these problems before they become serious. Your veterinarian can also advise you about ways to stop the behavior if your dog seems to eat grass more than you think they should. Eating grass is a natural process for wild dogs, and your dog might engage in this behavior from time to time as well out of instinct.
For more information, or if you would like to schedule an appointment, contact Southcentral Veterinary Services by calling (270) 282-2564. Our veterinary team in Bowling Green, KY will be here for you and your pet and are happy to answer any questions that you may have.
About Southcentral Veterinary Services
Southcentral Veterinary Services is here to ensure that you and your pet can access a variety of high-quality, progressive medical services. Our aim is to serve our patients and clients with integrity, compassion, and a focus on being your primary family vet.