Today, our Bartlett vets discuss why dogs eat grass, and whether or not it's safe or good for them.
Why do dogs eat grass?
The main reason that dogs eat grass is that they need roughage in their diets, just like we do. Grass is a good, and readily accessible source of fiber.
Just like in humans, a lack of roughage in the diet can hinder a dog's ability to digest food effectively and pass stool, so eating grass may actually be an effort to help their bodies function more smoothly.
However, if your dog is showing signs of stomach upset in addition to eating grass, there may be something more serious going on. Visit your vet so that they can rule out any medical issues, or provide treatment.
Some dogs may eat grass as a result of boredom or anxiety.
Although most dogs have no problem keeping themselves occupied when outside, some will eventually get bored when alone, and will nibble on grass to pass the time.
Anxious dogs may eat grass as a sort of mindless comfort, much in the same way some people chew their finger nails. Many people notice that their dogs eat more grass when they're feeling bored, lonely, or anxious.
If you think your dog is eating grass for psychological reasons, there are several possible solutions.
For dogs with separation anxiety, an old t-shirt or blanket with your familiar scent may provide comfort while you're away.
A puzzle toy can provide mental stimulation for bored dogs. If your dog is more active, more frequent walks and strenuous play sessions may be beneficial. And for dogs that require socialization with other dogs, doggie day care or visits to the dog park may be in order.
Is eating grass safe for dogs?
Unless your dog is eating grass excessively or showing signs of stomach upset, and as long as they are on consistent parasite prevention, eating grass is perfectly safe, and nothing to worry about.
Please ensure that there are no fertilizers, pesticides, or herbicides used on the grass that your dog eats, as this can be dangerous.
If you are concerned about your dog's grass eating habits, please contact our Bartlett veterinary clinic today to book an appointment.
Looking for a vet in Memphis?We're always accepting new patients, so contact our veterinary hospital today to book your pet's first appointment.
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