It is not uncommon for dogs to eat grass, but you might be a little concerned about this behavior from your beloved pet. Does it mean he is sick? Hungry? Or is he just bored? The reasons behind his behavior may vary a lot, which we will cover in this article.
Why Do Dogs Eat Grass?
You shouldn't be alarmed when you see your dog eating grass as it is a very common behavior for dogs. If your dog is younger or a puppy, this can often indicate that your dog is bored or just being playful. While it is common, grass eating can be a sign that there are some health-related discomforts your dog is suffering from, such as:
Gastrointestinal issues. Dogs are known to eat large quantities of grass suddenly to induce vomiting. When they are suffering from gastrointestinal discomforts, they will become eager to be let out and as soon as they are out, they will consume whatever grass they can get to first, almost in a frantic state. Once they have consumed enough grass, they will often lick their lips, which is a sign that they are nauseous. Shortly after they will most likely throw up. While this can be odd behavior and out of the ordinary, if you are asking "why do dogs eat grass frantically", know it is completely normal. This will typically occur a few times a year if they are ill or if they feel they have ingested something that could be toxic.
Nausea. If your dog is feeling nauseous or feeling bloated, they will want to eat grass to help relieve these discomforts.
Intestinal worms. Dogs may ingest grass to help rid themselves of intestinal parasites.
Lacking a specific nutrient. Some dogs may eat grass because they are not getting the proper nutrients their bodies need. Your dog may be eating grass and causing themselves to vomit for days in a row because they might need more fiber in their diet.
It's an inherited trait. Grass eating can be something that some dogs inherited from the wild dog ancestors.
They just like it. For some dogs, eating grass can just be a way for them to pass time or because they find it to be fun.
Is It Dangerous for Dogs to Eat Grass?
There is often no need to worry about your dog's behavior of eating grass if it appears to be because of an upset stomach and if they do not do it frequently or obsessively. You will, however, want to consider what other chemicals they are ingesting when you ask "why do dogs eat grass". If you know the grass has been sprayed with any type of pesticides or other lawn treatment, this can be harmful to your dogs.
Could You Prevent Your Dog Eating Grass?
There are a few things you can do to help stop or limit your dog's grass eating behavior.
Dogs that eat grass because they are bored might need more exercise in their daily routine. Play fetch with your dog and take him for longer walks to help ensure he is getting enough physical activity.
If you suspect your dogs is eating grass because they are not getting the proper nutrients, try switching their dog food. Find a dog food that is higher in fiber to help reduce or eliminate their grass eating behavior. If you have a puppy, it is best to consult a veterinarian before you switch your puppy's food as this can cause other health problems you will want to avoid.
If you have tried these other methods to help reduce your dog's grass eating behavior without success, there could be a more serious problem. If you can't seem to find the answer for "why do dogs eat grass" for your dog, it might be time to contact your veterinarian.