If you’re like most of the dog owners out there, you pay close attention to what goes into the food bowl and treat bag. Without a doubt, nutrition is at the cornerstone of your dog’s overall health. Feeding them the right things – at the right stage of development – is critical to day-to-day wellness. But, there are some things that dogs eat purely for the experience, and not because they need it nutritionally.
If you’ve ever wondered why dogs eat grass, we hope to uncover the mystery.
Cause for Concern?
Typically, this common canine behavior perplexes dog owners. Why do dogs eat grass? Is it related to sickness? Are they hungry? Bored? Could it harm them? Well, the reasons why dogs eat grass vary between individuals, but there are common denominators that explain this doggy quirk.
They Are Animals
Possibly the best answer is that dogs eat grass because they are, you guessed it, dogs. Their ancestors were scavengers who ate anything they could to stay alive. All sorts of vegetation went into this type of diet, and grass likely helped them feel satiated. Plus, it’s available nearly everywhere.
If Full, Why Graze?
There’s substantial evidence to suggest that dogs eat grass to induce vomiting. Whether caused by simple digestive problems or intestinal worms, dogs might be attracted to blades of grass to encourage the stomach to give up its contents. Certainly, if you notice your dog doing this on a regular basis, it’s probably time to investigate possible causes of this type of tummy trouble.
Could It Be More?
Dogs who tend to chew grass thoroughly (instead of gulping it down) are more likely to avoid the outcome of vomiting. If dogs eat grass because of an inherited instinct to do so, it’s possible that the grass offers something more to their diet. Used as a supplement, grass-eating dogs might need some help addressing possible nutritional deficiencies, like fiber.
A Quick Fix
Dogs eat grass because it tastes good, too. It’s like us hitting up the salad bar before the entree arrives. However, some dogs might simply eat grass just to have something to do. If you suspect that your dog eats grass out of boredom, we’re happy to help you find some activities or exercises to inspire them and keep them busy.
Dogs Eat Grass…Now What?
Eating grass is a behavior that probably won’t hurt your dog, but it could be a signal that something is wrong. We should discuss eating habits and frequency, type of food, how quickly your dog eats meals, and levels of fiber. Also, examining your dog for digestive problems or worms can provide great insight into this dog behavior.
Keep your dog off lawns that have been treated with chemicals, and do not allow them to eat grass in places where others dogs have defecated.