Why Is My Dog Eating Pooh & How To Stop It? - Pet Food Australia

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Why Is My Dog Eating Pooh & How To Stop It?

If toilet drinking, rolling in mud and licking their bits weren’t enough to deter pet owners from embracing their dogs in kisses and hugs, just wait until they start eating poop!

The scientific name for this incredibly gag-invoking habit is coprophagia (kop-ruh-fey-jee-uh). However, there are behavioral and physiological contributors to why some dogs view poop as a delicacy.


If you have a dog that likes to chow down on its own feces, don’t overreact, this is a widespread phenomenon in the animal kingdom. However, there are ways to discourage the habit, and some over-the-counter solutions can help.

First, let’s look at some of the reasons why your dog may be eating pooh:


There could be a simple answer to why your dog is eating their own feces, which may have nothing to do with behavioral issues. Dogs that are poorly nourished or lack certain nutrients in their diet may turn to eating poop as a way of supplementing what they’re missing. If your dog is eating their own poop, take them to the vet to rule out any potential medical causes, as pooh-supplementing could insinuate a health condition relating to parasites, diabetes, or malabsorption syndromes.

Another common reason why dogs eat pooh is due to stress or anxiety. An anxious or stressed dog may turn to eating poop as a way of self-soothing. This self-soothing technique might also appear when a household change occurs, such as a new baby, pet, or family member moving in.

If your dog displays other signs of anxiety, such as pacing, panting, or shaking, consult your vet or a professional dog trainer to help you work on some behavior modification techniques.

Dogs left alone for long periods may also start eating their own poop out of boredom. Likewise, if your dog is showing signs of destructive behaviors, such as chewing on furniture or digging holes in the yard, these are also signs that your pup is feeling a little left out.


If you think you know why your dog is eating their own poop, there are some things you can do to help break the habit.

The first step is ensuring your dog is properly nourished with a high-quality diet containing all the nutrients they need. Well-fed dogs are less likely to turn to eat their own feces.

Dog with Pet Food Australia Turkey

Some find that the best way to stop dogs from eating pooh is through behavioral techniques, training, and environmental management strategies.

If your dog is eating poop due to stress or anxiety, some behavior modification techniques can help. These techniques could include counterconditioning and desensitization. You can also try giving your dog puzzle toys filled with treats to keep their minds challenged and occupied when you’re not home.

Dog with chew toy

Obviously, taking away your dog’s access to its own feces is another way to help stop the habit. If you have a backyard, make sure to clean up after your dog right away. While on walks, keep the dog on a leash and pick up their feces as soon as they go.

You can also help your dog break the habit by working on training cues such as ‘leave it.’ Once your dog masters this cue, you’ll be able to stop them from eating feces before they even start

There are also some commercial products available that can help discourage dogs from eating poop. These products contain ingredients that make feces taste unpleasant to dogs, such as Yucca schidigera extract or capsaicin. Once they associate the flavour of pooh with an unpleasant experience, they’ll be less likely to eat it.

The Pet Food Australia team is here to support you and your dog through every stage of their lives. If you have any questions or concerns about why your dog is eating pooh, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us. We’re always happy to help!

Before you go, make sure you’re following along on Facebook, Instagram & Youtube for more tips, tricks, and an all round howl-arious time.

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