FREE US Shipping & Returns On $75+ Orders
Why Do Dogs Eat Poop? 5 Reasons to Explain This Bizarre Behavior

Why Do Dogs Eat Poop? 5 Reasons to Explain This Bizarre Behavior

Why Do Dogs Eat Poop? 5 Reasons to Explain This Bizarre Behavior

Dogs are known for their loyalty, affection and playful nature, but they also have some peculiar habits. One of their most baffling behaviors of dogs is their tendency to eat poop. You may have witnessed your furry friend sniffing, licking or consuming feces, and you must have wondered, "Why do dogs eat poop?" Is it a sign of a nutritional deficiency or a behavioral issue? In this article, we will explore the various reasons why dogs eat poop and offer tips on how to prevent this strange behavior.

5 Reasons Dogs Eat Poop

  1. Instinctual Behavior

Dogs are descended from wolves, and in the wild, wolves eat the feces of other animals to keep their den clean and to prevent predators from tracking their scent. This instinct has been passed down to domestic dogs, and some dogs may see feces as a natural part of their environment that needs to be cleaned up.

  1. Nutritional Deficiency

Some dogs may eat poop because they are not getting enough nutrients from their food. This can be more common in dogs that are on a low-quality diet or are simply not getting sufficient calories. The dog's body may be trying to extract any remaining nutrients from the feces, leading them to eat poop.

  1. Medical Issues

Certain canine conditions may cause a dog to eat poop, such as pancreatic insufficiency or intestinal parasites. If you notice your pooch's poop-eating behavior has suddenly increased, it may be worth getting them checked out by a vet to rule out any underlying medical issues.

  1. Attention-Seeking Behavior

Some dogs may eat poop to get attention from their owners. If a pup is bored or craving attention, they may resort to eating feces as a way to get their owner's attention, even if it's negative.

  1. Behavioral Issues

Some dogs may develop behavioral issues that lead them to eat poop, such as anxiety, stress or compulsive behavior. If your dog is exhibiting this behavior, it's important to address the underlying cause and seek professional help if necessary, either from your veterinarian, a trainer or a veterinary behaviorist.

How to Prevent Your Dog from Eating Poop

  1. Provide a Nutritious Diet

Ensure that your dog is on a high-quality, balanced diet that meets their nutritional needs. If you're not sure what type of food is best for your furry friend, consult with your vet or a canine nutritionist.

  1. Keep Your Yard Clean

Make sure to pick up your dog's poop as soon as possible and dispose of it in a sealed bag. This will prevent your dog from having access to feces and reduce the likelihood of them eating poop.

  1. Protect Their Paws From Poop

Even dogs who don’t intentionally consume their own feces may come into contact with it on dirty streets, sidewalks and fields. To prevent your pup from ingesting poopy germs and bacteria, make sure to use a pair of our Deluxe Easy-On Boot Leggings on every outdoor outing. Their durable, TPE booties protect paws from dirt, germs and harmful bacteria, so your dog won’t ingest them by licking their paws once you’re home from your walk.


dog wearing walkee paws dog boot leggings


  1. Supervise Your Dog

Keep an eye on your four-legged friend when they're outside, and intervene if they try to eat poop. You can also try using a leash or a long line to keep your dog close to you and prevent them from wandering off to find feces.

  1. Provide Plenty of Mental Stimulation

Make sure your dog is getting enough exercise and mental stimulation to prevent boredom and attention-seeking behavior. Provide toys, playtime and training sessions to keep your dog engaged and happy.


Q: Is it normal for dogs to eat poop?

A: While it's not uncommon for dogs to eat poop, it's not a normal or healthy behavior. If your dog is eating poop, it's important to address the underlying cause and take steps to prevent it.

Q: Is eating poop dangerous for dogs?

A: While ingesting feces itself is not necessarily dangerous, it can lead to health issues if your dog is eating poop that’s contaminated with harmful bacteria or parasites. Additionally, if your dog is eating poop due to an underlying medical issue, that issue should be addressed by a veterinarian.

Q: Can eating poop be a sign of a behavioral issue?

A: In some cases, eating poop may be a sign of a behavioral issue in dogs. Dogs that are anxious or stressed may engage in this practice as a way to soothe themselves. If you suspect your dog's habit of consuming feces is related to a behavioral issue, consider speaking with a professional dog trainer or behaviorist.


While eating poop may be a common behavior among dogs, it's not something you have to live with. By providing your dog with a nutritious diet, cleaning up after them promptly, and providing plenty of exercise and mental stimulation, you can help prevent this behavior from becoming a problem. If you suspect your dog's penchant for eating poop is related to an underlying medical issue, be sure to take them to the vet for a full checkup and follow any recommended treatments. 

Shop the story