Why Does Your Dog Eat His Own Poop?

Dogs eat their own feces or the feces of other animals for a variety of reasons, including boredom, stress, hunger or simply because it's normal dog behavior under certain conditions. Eating feces, known as coprophagia in the scientific community, is also a common behavior for many other animals. Other species may not normally eat feces but do so under unusual conditions, such as extreme hunger.

Dogs often eat feces as puppies, but if they are receiving well-balanced meals, they commonly grow out of this behavior. However, there are various reasons why dogs may persist with such behaviors even if they are fed nutritional meals consistently. If the dog is having trouble with its digestive system, and it is not properly breaking down food, the dog's feces tastes very similar to the food that the dog ate. If changing the food does not correct this problem, the owner should take the dog to a veterinarian.

A dog who eats feces may also be reacting negatively to a new environment or acting out for being left alone for too long. Dogs are sometimes fascinated with frozen stool during the winter. Owners should remember that while coprophagia may be highly distasteful behavior to humans, it's common for dogs to eat feces, and this behavior should not necessarily raise concern.