Diari of Tarragona
June 16, 2017 - 08:58 AM
Coprophagy is the voluntary ingestion of feces, and mainly done by insects, since it belongs to their diet.
However, there are also mammals that do this practice sporadically, such as elephants, primates, dogs and rodents. Only on very rare occasions have some humans come to do it, in that case it is called coprophilia.
What is coprophagy and why does it affect our pets
When you have a pet at home, it is likely that at some stage you may consume your own feces or those of other animals. This particularity can occur more in dogs than in cats.
The main causes are: pancreatic insufficiency, pancreatitis, intestinal infections, malabsorption syndrome, and excess food.
There are three types: autocoprophagy, when they consume their own feces, interspecific coprophagy, when they eat the excrement of another animal of the same species, and interspecific coprophagy, is when the animal eats feces of another species.
This peculiarity usually occurs in puppies, since they mimic the behavior of mothers, and they always ingest those of their puppies, this being normal. Ideally, young dogs overcome this as they mature. On the other hand, if this behavior appears in the adult age of a dog it may be due to a pathological or functional problem.
Some specialists suggest that the low digestibility rations make the dog feel the need to eat a greater amount of food, so it produces more feces. Therefore, the animal believes that it is the ration that is lacking and therefore eats them without any problem.
Another cause is that they present internal parasites, which results in low absorption and lack of nutrients and vitamins. That is why the dog instinctively searches other animals for the nutrients necessary to ensure a complete diet.
It is important to take into account the erroneous behavior that the owners of the dogs execute, since, if the animal's snout is rubbed on the feces as a sign that it has done something wrong, it happens that they eat them to avoid another reprimand.
Likewise, other problems such as stress, boredom, depression or abandonment can also cause this action. The pet owner will have to watch that the dog does not continue to affect this practice, since this way they can acquire parasites and bacteria.
Dog droppings are also a means of transmission of canine diseases, such as parvovirosis. While cat are carriers of the dangerous Toxoplasma gondii, responsible for toxoplasmosis.
Treatment of coprophagia
In the market there are innumerable products for the treatment of coprophagy. However, there is one in particular that has all the necessary elements for the pet to definitely overcome this practice that is usually very unpleasant for humans.
Coprovet is a natural product that is composed of dried cassava extract, which decreases the intensity of the smell of feces and also improves the process of digestion and absorption of nutrients.
It also includes peppermint extract, which is rich in chlorophyll and helps neutralize body odors, and pineapple extract, which helps reduce the presence of poorly digested food in the stool, as well as altering the taste and smell thereof, So coprophagy is discouraged.
Coprovet can be purchased at thepetshopboys, which are specialists in pets and have all the necessary products to make the life of the spoiled of the house more bearable and happy.
After having supplied the Coprovet, it is essential that animals are prevented from having access to feces, so it is recommended to keep the area where the dog defecates as clean as possible.
In addition, thepetshopboys page offers valuable advice to properly educate pets, and thus avoid incorrect attitudes that can affect the behavior of the animal at home and also outside it.
Home tips to modify behavior
Apart from using medications such as Coprovet, different actions can be implemented, such as not letting other dogs' feces smell during walks away from home, deterring them with something that catches their attention.
It is also advisable to take the dog to the veterinarian so that the doctor makes sure to end the presence of parasites and to inform us about the most appropriate ration according to the weight, age and breed of the animal.
Another home remedy is to place spicy in the stool so that the dog has an unpleasant experience when trying to eat them and avoid it in the future.
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3 weeks before
If your dog has given him to start eat stool, it is time to take measures to correct this habit harmful to health and very unhygienic. The reason for this coprophagous behavior may be due to a food deficit, or it may simply be an answer to anxiety, boredom or stress. You may also have copied that behavior from other animals. Be that as it may, it is a habit that must be corrected and avoided, so we are going to give you some advice.
How to prevent your dog from eating feces
The first and although it seems very obvious is that pick up your stool from your yard regularly. If none are available, your dog will not be able to eat them. It is logical, but there are people who do not take this trouble, and the main thing is to ensure a clean and healthy environment for your dog.
Another tip is regarding the food distribution of your pet throughout the day. The best thing in this case is that with the same amount of food, you distribute it in smaller portions. This is a good idea because it helps eliminate the need to eat feces. This behavior is often due to trying to compensate for any nutritional deficiency.
Make sure your dog is quite active. It is important that you do exercise, it’s basic to be entertained, have toys with which to spend many moments of distraction. Many dogs eat feces as a negative response associated with boredom or anxiety, so if your pet does not get bored, it will be more difficult for stress to affect him.
When you go out to walk with your dog, you must keep it tight with your belt. If you see that it approaches the feces of other animals or their own, do not hesitate to correct it with a firm "no." Be sure to insist on saying NO, again and again. Until I learn it. Give him a prize if you see that he is learning to stop doing it.
exist commercial alternatives to correct your dog eat feces. You can use products such as Dis-Taste or For-Bid, to make the stool taste unpleasant for the dog. These products should be given to the animal that produces feces. If the dog is eating its own feces, give this product, if it is eating feces from another pet, give the product to the other animal.
Hopefully the tips will be useful, and above all, do not lose patience.
2. Ask yourself if your dog needs more exercise (walking, running, playing):
Maybe your dog is too bored, does not burn energy and does not know how to use that energy that is left over. The energy not consumed, is usually transformed in that the dog makes many "trastadas", from digging the garden to try to escape, and sometimes, also eat excrements of cat or other dogs. In this case, for prevent your dog from eating cat droppingsyou would need to give more exercise and more time for daily walk.
4. To prevent your dog from eating cat droppings, offer a varied and balanced diet:
One of the possible causes for a dog to eat cat feces is that he wants to take advantage of the nutrients that are still present in them (especially proteins, fats and minerals). Maybe the diet you offer your dog is too monotonous and boring, or it directly lacks nutrients.
To avoid it, vary your dog's diet as much as you can. Give it to me if you want, but not only that. Give him also homemade food, which is very healthy, nutritious and delicious, besides being cheap and easy to prepare. If you need some ideas, check out these video recipes:
On the one hand, collect your cat's bowel movements from your tray daily, so that the smell does not make your dog "fall into temptation."
Hi, I have a 3-month-old puppy and he eats the pebbles from my cat's bathroom, I still can't get him out because I don't complete his vaccination schedule, and we play inside my house, he eats an excellent quality food (the same one they ate his parents and puppy grandmother and now as an adult) and yet he still does, what can I do?
Miguel Guzmán says
out of curiosity, because the puppies are curious, and because they will smell like a cat and find it attractive. Try to put the sandbox up, while the puppy grows and passes the mania.
Please do not hit, knock, damage, it is not the solution, keep your place clean, carry it tied and avoid getting it to poop, and exercise, run, and buy toys to throw and bring them, and the cat has it in another room, and please, if you have no patience, give love, if someone who does have it thanks.
Dogs that eat feces due to lack of nutrients
The lack of nutrients or enzymes is the most common reason why dogs eat feces, thus complementing their lack. The reasons why a dog may have nutritional or enzymatic deficiencies are several:
- Feed our dog with a feed of poor quality, or failing that with poorly balanced food.
- Liver or digestive disease, such as inflammatory bowel disease (IBD).
- Intestinal parasites
A feed of poor quality can cause our dog to have serious nutritional deficiencies, which he tries to supply by eating his own feces or those of other animals. To solve this problem we simply must feed our dog with quality feed and in a few weeks their deficiencies will have disappeared.
We must also monitor that our dog is taking the amount of food that corresponds, because even if we use a good feed, if the amount is not correct we will cause deficiencies.
If, on the contrary, it is a disease, we must locate it in order to provide adequate medication and thus avoid our dog to continue eating feces. Some diseases such as pancreatitis cause our dog to have digestive enzyme deficiencies, something they look for in their feces or the feces of other dogs.
Other diseases such as Inflammatory Bowel Disease, causes our dog can not absorb all the nutrients from the food he is digesting. This produces deficiencies that our dog tries to cover by eating the feces of other animals or his own.
Only a veterinarian can determine if our dog suffers from any disease that makes him eat stool instinctively. Some tests must be performed to confirm these diagnoses.
It is also possible that it is not a disease but intestinal parasites, which also absorb nutrients leaving our dog with significant deficiencies. Intestinal parasites can be eliminated easily by means of pills that are administered quarterly with food.
But there are also some intestinal parasites such as Giardias, capable of surviving those pills. These types of parasites should be eliminated with an antibiotic treatment prescribed by the veterinarian. To determine what type of parasite it is, just perform a stool test (very cheap in veterinary clinics).
Although these are the main reasons, there are others that are also common and that can be easily solved at general levels.
Dogs that eat feces due to hunger or anxiety / stress
Another reason why a dog eats feces is simply because of hunger, there are many people who, due to time needs or because of being poorly informed, feed their dogs wrongly.
A dog of less than three months should eat four to six times a day, this does not mean that we should inflate it to eat, but that we should ration the daily amount of food in four or six shots.
A dog from three to twelve months should eat three to four times a day, a dog from twelve months to eight or ten years should eat three times a day and adult dogs over ten years old usually tell us themselves if they prefer three, Two or only one daily intake.
Spreading your food in several doses throughout the day will prevent you from starving excessively, so your desire to eat feces will also decrease.
When it comes to loneliness, anxiety or stress we must change the way we deal with the problem. Before leaving our dog alone at home we must go out with him for a walk and exercise, this way we guarantee that he will take a good nap.
It is also a good idea to have it entertaining, we can use some toys in which to introduce food inside, so that our dog is entertained trying to take out the food. These types of toys are called Kong Toys.
They are really simple tricks to avoid separation stress that our dogs suffer when they are left alone at home, something that is even listed as illness. It is much more common than many people think and is responsible for our dog eating its feces or breaking things, for example.
Dogs that eat feces for imitation or fear of punishment
For all it is known that dogs are very intelligent and therefore from very puppies begin to imitate us in many things, many more than we imagine. One of them is to see us collect their feces, they can appreciate in our face or gestures that it is not something we like and consequently try to collect them for themselves (and their only way is to eat them).
To avoid this poor hygienic and healthy misconduct, we must try to prevent our dog from seeing us cleaning their feces at home, or even as far as possible, avoid seeing us pick them up in the street.
On the other hand there are people who when they get home and see that their dog has made their needs inside, they get very angry and even shout or punish their dog. This is something we should never do, because some dogs are able to eat their own feces simply for fear of punishment or to make us angry.
If we get home and our dog has made his needs inside, possibly because it has not been able to endure more or because we have not taught our dog to do his needs away from home: Teach an adult puppy or dog to do his needs away from home.
We must never scold him or even look at him badly, we must simply assess if he is ill and has not been able to endure, if we have left too much time between exits and exits to do his things outside or if we simply have not taught him well.
Dogs that eat feces for hygiene or lack of space
Strange as it may be on certain occasions, our dogs are actually very clean animals that try not to urinate or defecate near the place where they sleep. Sometimes when we have a puppy and we can not take him out because he has not yet had his mandatory vaccinations, we have a bad habit of putting a hole in the kitchen, terrace or living room.
In those cases, the dog has no option to do his needs outside the home, so when he does them inside he sometimes eats them simply for hygiene, for not having them near his bed or playground.
The same goes for adult dogs that spend a lot of time locked up at home or on a terrace, there are many occasions when they end up eating their own feces to maintain relative hygiene.
Solving this type of behavior is as simple as preventing our dog or puppy from doing his needs near where he sleeps or plays, programming a routine of trips to the park so that he learns to do his needs away from home.
If my dog eats feces is it dangerous for his health?
Although it is something very common and probably our dog has eaten feces on occasion and nothing has happened…. The truth is that if it is danger, it can even be said that it is very dangerous for a dog to eat feces.
When our dog eats its own feces it is introducing back into its body, the wastes that its digestive system has not wanted to absorb. It is a way of getting intoxicated based on toxins from your own body. It is also a completely unhealthy way of eating that can lead to other diseases.
But more dangerous is even when our dog eats feces from other dogs or animals. Most intestinal parasites, some as serious as the giardias themselves, are transmitted mainly by the intake of contaminated feces. If our dog eats feces from a dog that has parasites, our dog will spread easily.
Even other, much more serious diseases, some of them capable of ending our dog's life, are transmitted or can be transmitted through feces.
How to prevent my dog from eating its feces or the feces of other dogs / animals?
Obviously depending on the origin of the dog problem we can act more or less correctly. If our dog has nutritional deficiencies, as we have explained, it will be enough to correct them and wait for a certain time that sometimes takes a month or a month and a half.
If the reason is that you suffer from any disease or parasites, only a veterinarian can diagnose and prescribe a correct medication to solve the problem.
When it comes to imitation, fear, hunger or stress in addition to solving the problem from the beginning we can also use a homemade trick to prevent a dog from eating feces.
It consists of giving our dog something that makes his feces smell different or have an unpleasant taste for him. This is achieved by adding pineapple chunks with our dog's food for several days. We will begin to notice the effect from the third day and see how our dog stops eating its own feces.
If we do not have pineapple, veterinary clinics also sell products that are added to the food so that the taste of the feces is different (unpleasant for the dog).
Preventing our dog from eating feces from other dogs or animals is more complicated,some dogs eat human feces, not to say that most love it. We must locate the feces before our dog and spray on them a little spicy, this will make them like it much less.
To scold them right on the spot can also help them understand that this is wrong, if we do it sooner or later it will not help. And in impossible cases ... the best recommendation we can offer is that you go to a professional trainer.