Dogs eat dirt for a number of reasons. The desire for munching on soil might be boredom or stress, or it could simply be because they smelled something tasty mixed in the mud.
But it could also signal an underlying health problem or a lack of proper nutrition, says the American Kennel Club( AKC). Compulsive geophagia might be a
sign that your pooch has one of the following issues.
Anemia (low red blood cell count). Nutritional Imbalance or Mineral Deficiency. Upset Stomach or Gastrointestinal Disturbance. Low-quality food. Gastrointestinal disturbance.
5 Reasons Dogs Eat Dirt.
1. Bad Food.
2. Chronic Health Concerns.
3. Tasty Dirt.
4. Behavioral Issues.
5. Stomach Upset.
How to discourage your dog from eating dirt.
If your dog is tasting your backyard dirt on occasion, it’s likely not a reason for concern, according to experts. ” If your dog is simply tasting vs. consuming large quantities of dirt continuously, it’s not a problem,” says Hartstein. But if you notice your dog is consuming large quantities of dirt or if their dirt-eating seems to be a compulsive bad habit a little leash training and avoiding letting them roam the yard unsupervised could be all it takes to correct the behavior.
Putting your dog on a leash is the easiest way to manage their dirt-eating,” says Hartstein. After leashing your dog, practice having your dog look at you while walking and if your dog reaches down to eat dirt, distract him or get their attention through a cue you have established to enforce another more rewarding behavior.
Make sure that the reward you are giving to your dog is more rewarding than the environmental reward of dirt-eating.”. If your dog continues to eat significant amounts of dirt despite training, the best thing to do is get in touch with your vet and schedule an appointment to make sure there are no medical or nutritional issues behind the behavior.
Is Eating Dirt Bad for Dogs? Absolutely! Eating dirt can pose a variety of problems for dogs. Eating clumps of dirt, mud, or other objects can pose a choking hazard. Chewing and consuming hard objects, like rocks and animal bones that may be mixed in with the dirt, can also fracture teeth. Aside from the more obvious dangers, here are some others that you may not be aware of. ” A nutritional consult and with your veterinarian can help you determine why your pet’s dirt-eating activities continue,” says Carlson. While there are several reasons your dog may be eating dirt, there is hope to diagnose and stop the issue before it becomes a larger problem.
How to Keep Your Dog From Eating Dirt.
Proper Diet. Supervised Walks. Parasite Prevention. Reducing Anxiety and Boredom.
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