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Customer Discussions > Dogs forum

Pooh eating puppy - what should we do?

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Showing 1-25 of 60 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Feb 4, 2010 10:34:18 PM PST
D. Slivinski says:
I have read loads of things online, but would love to hear from others who may have had the same problem.

Posted on Feb 5, 2010 8:37:48 AM PST
Betsy Sue says:
It's pretty normal. make sure your puppy is getting a good diet and the only thing that works is to clean up right after the pup has eliminated. My girl did this briefly, its a cary over from being in the litter, momma would clean up after them......keep pup on a leash when you take them out to go potty, once they have eliminated to go a different area to play, then come back to clean it up. A quick ah ah if the turn to try to eat it and move the pup away from the area.

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 5, 2010 8:41:35 AM PST
D. Slivinski says:
He eats other dogs pooh....I have to get him fast away back to the house...or else..he does it...eeuck

Posted on Feb 5, 2010 11:14:09 AM PST
B. Blanton says:
My toy poodle eats cat poo if I don't keep it scooped out. Yuck!

Posted on Feb 5, 2010 1:03:48 PM PST
E. Hunt says:
There's stuff you can buy to put in the other dogs' poop (tasteless & odorless, I believe) that makes the poop taste bad to the dog that's doing the poop eating.

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 5, 2010 1:43:18 PM PST
K. Dean says:
Techniques I us with my poo-eater are as follows:
I have multiple dogs and I usually accompany them when they go outside so I can see when/where they poop. I immediately scoop poop as I see it in action. Keep the yard picked up! Do not let feces accumulate in your yard at all; if it is there, it WILL get eaten.

Feed a quality holistic food such as EVO or Call of the Wild. Sometimes dogs eat poop because they are lacking nutrients in their own diets and so they "supplement" with dookie.

Interact and play with the dog outside. Dogs left to their own devices for a period of time without any structured activity get bored--just like we would if we were left confined in an area with nothing to do. I like to work with my dogs on agility or fetching--or I just get them going on flat-out butt runs around the yard to burn up some energy. I've also kept tasty snacks in my pocket when I go out and practice recall, sit, down, etc with my poo-eater when it looks like he's on a scavenger hunt. He has learned that by coming to me when called usually earns him a yummy treat.

Sprinkle dog food with Adoph's Meat Tenderizer made by Lawry. The active ingredient is Papain which makes poop taste bad to many dogs. When I used this regularly, I had to add it to all my dogs' food bowls at every meal. This doesn't work with all dogs--it sort of worked for my poo-eater, but I found that the first three steps I mentioned above work better.

Consistency, patience, and vigilance are key to curbing this nasty habit. Good luck!

Posted on Feb 5, 2010 2:03:39 PM PST
Betsy Sue says:
LOL, I used to call that Kitty Rocha! hehehehe, just keep him on lead when he is somewhere he might be around some .... until he grows out of it.

Posted on Feb 5, 2010 4:18:29 PM PST
Mike Zupan says:
"There's stuff you can buy to put in the other dogs' poop (tasteless & odorless, I believe) that makes the poop taste bad to the dog that's doing the poop eating."

It's pretty funny that you have to put something in poop to make the poop taste bad.

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 5, 2010 5:57:54 PM PST
Susan Bayles says:
We have a 4 month old Beagle named Hunter. He started eating cat pooh and then eating the other dog pooh that was outside. I got online and read many articles on why dogs eat pooh - needless to say the best advice we received was from one of the associates at Petco. They said that most of the time when a puppy or dog eats pooh it is that they are hungry or there food is not satisfying them. We had just changed our puppy for the expensive food that the store has been given him to puppy chow. That is when he got really bad eating pooh. So taking the advice we purchased Natures Balance Dog Food and he stopped eating pooh that day. I would not of believed it if I had not see it. We are having a little trouble with his stool being lose right now from the change in food. We just are on watch more carefully. Also there are pills that you can buy at the pet store that will help stop them from eating pooh. Good luck and don't give up......

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 5, 2010 9:14:52 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Feb 5, 2010 9:17:19 PM PST
A customer says:
" It's pretty funny that you have to put something in poop to make the poop taste bad."

LMAOOOOOO!!!!!! Yeah, that "is" funny. lol

My dog Mike is eight years old today, and does not eat poop. However, I did catch him dining at the cat box one time when he was about eight months old. I came in from outside carrying an empty 16 oz. plastic water bottle. When I saw him chomping on the poop I was so grossed out that my first reaction was to bop him on the head with the empty bottle. Not hard, just a bop. I then took him into the bathroom and washed his mouth out with soap. JUST JOKING!!! lol I brushed his teeth to get the pooh stink out. Yuck! That one little bop is all it took for my dog to never eat poop again. Now, I don't recommend that folks start bopping their dogs on the head with empty water bottles. lol I did feel bad that I didn't think before I bopped him, but hey, crap occurs sometimes; we all do dumb stuff without thinking first, and I never did it again. I asked my vet why some dogs eat cat pooh. He told me that they're attracted to the protein in it. He said that cat food contains more protein than dog food, because cats need more protein. I guess that could be a part of why some dogs eat it, but what about dogs that eat other dogs pooh? Maybe they're lacking in other nutrients?

Mike's diet: Innova Senior adult canned dog food, Canidae Platinum Senior dry dog food, Evo Wild Cravings dog treats, one Pet Tab Plus daily. He stays very satisfied on this diet.


BTW, we share the same birthday :D

Posted on Feb 6, 2010 6:14:29 AM PST
Purpledog says:
Coprophagy - the eating of droppings (manure) has 5 main causes:
- dietary excess of fat or carbs which come through the manure only partially digested
- lack of bulk in the diet, i.e., no feeling of fullness or satiety after eating
- intestinal irritation from worms or indigestible foreign bodies*
- deficiencies in calcium, phosphorus or iron in the diet
- boredom from lack of challenge or interest in the area of confinement
* puppies usually require deworming, and often ingest things they shouldn't out of sheer curiosity in their new world, so this may 'pass' :)

There is some discussion about a possible link to insufficient Vit B in the diet, but I haven't studied anything to date that proves that idea.

Personally, in all my years of dog ownership and fostering rescues, I've experienced this only once - with one of my current Greyhounds (I have 6 right now). She came from the track at age 2 (which is a puppy as far a Greyhounds are concerned, never having been in a house, etc) with this nasty habit and I have yet to be able to break it. She was, however, horribly malnourished, abused and neglected while there as she was not a good racer (money maker). And even now, at age 8, she will hone in on a tiny morsel I've missed while cleaning the yard refuse like a hawk finding a mouse. After several complete medical exams/tests to rule out medical/neurological reasons for this behavior, I did try many of the products on the market. I gave them to all my current dogs so she would leave everything alone should she find anything. While these products did work for others based on their personal reviews, nothing worked for her. I have resigned myself to just keeping the yard completely clean which isn't a problem because I never let any of them out there without me. I'm beginning to feel as if the 'scooper' is a permanent part of my arm!

If you train the pup to eliminate on lead and always in the same area, clean up should be a breeze for you. You always know where to clean, and always know what area to steer clear of until you've had a chance to clean. Besides, if you train to eliminate on lead, your pup will expect and anticipate returning to that same area with you in charge each time.

One good thing is that puppies often grow out of this...I'll keep my fingers crossed your baby does!!!!

I wish you many happy days with your new companion.

Paw Print
Vet Tech

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 6, 2010 6:57:40 AM PST
[Deleted by the author on Feb 6, 2010 6:59:11 AM PST]

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 6, 2010 7:10:30 AM PST
JJB says:
"It's pretty funny that you have to put something in poop to make the poop taste bad."

I wonder who does the before and after taste testing.

We found some tablets that are supposed to correct this problem. I can't speak to the taste, but the texture of the poops seems different with the tablets. It seems that the poops dry out faster with the tablets - once the poop is dry, our dog doesn't touch them. Alas, our dog will still eat fresh poops if she has nothing else to do. So if you see the dog poop, you clean it up. If she's out in the yard, she usually has other things to do and doesn't eat it immediately, giving the poop time to dry out and be less interesting (also easier to clean up.) Ironically, my dog loves the tablets - I give it to her as a reward after she poops outside in the morning.

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 6, 2010 5:37:33 PM PST
IrishCookie says:
From: "Robert Jay Russell, Ph.D." <>
Date: August 5, 2009 2:19:58 PM EDT
Subject: [Coton e-ZINE] [ALERT] PET-TABs are POISONED



Robert Jay Russell, Ph.D.,
Coton de Tulear Club of America President,

www.cotonclub. org
CotonNews@aol. com
(607) 693-2828


I cannot emphasize enough the extreme danger these multivitamins represent. Quixotically, they are not being recalled and the FDA has taken no notice of the results of testing published by ConsumerLabs. com

This from the ConsumerLab' s paid subscription web site:

Pet-Tabs Complete Daily for Dogs was contaminated with 6.45 mcg of lead per tablet. This is several times higher than the amount of lead (1.41 mcg) ConsumerLab. com found to be in this product in 2007. Contaminations levels for dogs are not well defined, but FDA notes that children should not be exposed to more than 6 mcg of lead per day and, as noted above, California requires warning labels on supplements for human use that contain over 0.5 mcg of lead per day.
Dr. Russell continues:
Pet-Tabs are perhaps the most widely sold dog and cat vitamin supplement. We've used them (albeit not for many years). Pet-Tabs are sold by PetsMart, Doctors Foster and Smith, and virtually every pet shop, and on-line pet store in the nation. Pet-Tabs are made by the giant Pfizer Pharmaceutical Corporation, one of America's leading opponents of health care reform and industry inspection and regulation. Pet-Tabs are sold under another corporate name: "Virbac" << http://www.virbacpe >>
ConsumerLab tests mostly human products. Sadly, this report and the previous years' report confirming lead contamination in Pfizer/Virbac Pet-Tab supplements calls into serious question the safety and efficacy of these giant corporations' entire product lines.
ConsumerLab tests mostly human products. There is no other information (such as why or how this supposed animal health care product has been laced with toxic levels of lead for years).

Lead can be absorbed through the skin or, in the case of these supplements, ingested and absorbed. Clinical signs can be gastrointestinal and/or neurological. Many dogs or cats who are chronically ill, have upset stomachs, anorexia (food avoiders), blood disorders, kidney disorders (degeneration of the glomeruli and tubules), immunological problems, reproductive problems, or are suffering abnormal behavioral signs could have suffered chronic, catastrophic lead poisoning through supplements.

Before this revelation of supplement poisoning, the most common known cause of lead poisoning in people and dogs was contact with lead based paint or old car batteries. Other common causes of lead poisoning include ingestion of lead shot (fatal to many wild birds and sometimes served up in food that is hunted) and handling lead painted toys and ceramic ware. During the past 6,000 years humans have mined and redistributed lead on the planet to the extent that each of us has approximately 1,000 times the lead in our system (as measured in our bones) than prehistoric North American Indians.

Puppies absorb lead more readily than adults and are at greatest immediate risk for signs of lead poisoning, but lead poisoning can prove debilitating, even fatal for mature pets as well.

If your dog suffers from the diffuse signs of lead poisoning or if your dog or cat have been exposed to Pet-Tabs, the CTCA recommends you have its blood tested for lead concentration. Children in the household should also be tested should your pet prove contaminated.

I would avoid all vitamin and mineral supplement products sold under labels by either Pfizer or Virbac. These include labels such as "Pet-Tinic," and "Lixotinic," and "Liqui-Tinic, " which are generally sold for large animals.
Save any bottles of these products in a sealed Zip Loc bag. Label the bag well, stating "DO NOT USE - POISON!" You may need a sample of this product should your dog or cat become symptomatic. You will need to save the original packaging and product should Pfizer/Virbac be subject to a Class Action suit.
Veterinarians normally do not first associate gastrointestinal, immunological or even neurological signs with lead poisoning. Given America's current largely untested, unregulated food, supplement, and pharmaceutical supply, perhaps they should.

Should your vet need additional information about lead toxicity, its diagnosis and treatment, I suggest the following available, up-to-date references:

Michael E. Peterson, Patricia A. Talcott (editors), "Small Animal Toxicology, Second Edition," Saunders Elsevier, St. Louis, MO. 2006

Ramesh G. Gupta (editor) "Veterinary Toxicology: Basic and Clinical Principles," Academic Press, New York, NY. 2007.

That question is analogous to asking: "what food is safe?" It's a crap shoot to be sure. ConsumerLab tested only three pet supplements; one was "Halo Purely for Pets VitaGlo Daily Greens." It did not contain lead, but it contained less than half its advertised vitamins. "21st Century Pet Nutrition Pet Chews Plus" was "approved" since it did not contain lead and its ingredients were as labeled.

Our veterinarian believes that one-half a Centrum Senior (human vitamin) is safe and effective for a dog the size of a Coton de Tulear. But without widespread government tests of our food, drug and supplement supply, who knows?

We have been using ProPet 8-in-one Vitamin supplements without problems, but chronic, gradual poisoning is not something we'd necessarily see. As noted: it is a gamble. And one that no one in this country should have to take.

NOTE: you have permission to cross post this article. If you do so, please leave the article intact.
------------ --------- --------- -------
copyright 2009 Dr. R. J. Russell & the CTCA
------------ --------- --------- -------

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 6, 2010 6:07:06 PM PST
A customer says:
IrishCookie: Thanks so much for this information. I won't be giving my dog any more Pet-Tabs. I can hardly believe it. Here we are "thinking" that we're doing the right thing for our pets, but instead causing them potential harm. My dog Mike and I are very grateful to you.

Blessings, Ollie & Mike & Gang

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 6, 2010 7:04:32 PM PST
[Deleted by the author on Feb 6, 2010 7:05:39 PM PST]

Posted on Feb 6, 2010 9:13:03 PM PST
We once had a dog that ate every kind of poo he could find, goose, bird, cat, dog, horse, etc. He was an outdoor dog on a farm. We just named him accordingly Sha-teeter (and never let him kiss us!).

Posted on Feb 6, 2010 10:50:19 PM PST
Chelsea P says:
all you have to do is feed him a piece or two of pineapple... that will make the poop "sour"... try it out!!!

Posted on Feb 7, 2010 6:07:00 AM PST
Purpledog says:
Irish Cookie - thank you for the info. I've given all my dogs Pet Tabs Plus ever since I can recall without any problems (that I know of). However, I lost my oldest Greyhound Nov 8 overnight to such a vicious, horrid, unexplained condition that no one in the ER (or even weeks after) could ID the problem. It was so bizarre that even today, no one who saw my Blu that night has figured out what happened to him. Now I'm very suspicious...of course, I knew he was in such bad shape just by looking at him that I had arranged for him to be euthanized within 10 minutes of arriving at the ER, but the group of vets called to the examination room to help him asked permission to take photos of him for further study and teaching purposes. (No one mentioned or suggested necropsy to me at the time, but upon reading your above information, perhaps that would have been the better decision, although not sure if lead poisoning being the culprit would have shown up).

Having 6 dogs of my own (still), and fostering many more each year, I buy Pet Tabs Plus by the carton so have several large jars stored in the cabinet. This is scary stuff and thanks to you, I'm going to do a lot more reading and searching about this subject while removing the tabs, at least temporarily, from their diet.

Thanks for sharing. You may have saved the lives of countless loving and loved companions today. Paw

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 7, 2010 6:28:28 AM PST
W. Burton says:
I've read that feeding pineapple eliminates this problem. I feed it to my dogs maybe once a week. I'd also recommend feeding the best quality dog food you can afford. Check out for great info on many topics.

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 7, 2010 1:03:41 PM PST
Susan Harvey says:
I saw this same thing on tv. It was on Me or the Dog. The dog was going in the house and eating it. They thought the dog was house trained but a camera proved otherwise. The puppy was not getting enough nutrients in his diet. The feces tasted no different from when it was going in. The dog did not know the difference. I think the dog food did not have enough protein in it. They had to switch to a different dog food as the dog was always hungry too. I can't remember what was sprinkled on the food also to make it taste different coming out. Perhaps if you looked up the segment online you could find out what to do.

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 8, 2010 5:40:58 AM PST
M. Carouba says:
My puppy used to chow down on her poop like it was caviar at a 5-star restaurant and she had been abandoned on a desert island for 2 months with only sand to eat. I didn't want to punish her for what came naturally, or make elimination a traumatic experience, so I was lucky to find a product called S.E.P. (Stop Eating Poop.... you gotta love that name). It's got a lot of nutrients that help my pup stay healthy, it helps the poop stay firmer and easier to pick up, and it has something in it that is completely unappealing to dogs. I bought it at an organic dog store, but I'm sure you can find it anywhere. You only use 1/8 tsp. a day, so it lasts a good long time. Good luck! -- Mary

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 8, 2010 12:18:02 PM PST
J.E.C. says:
Interesting about the papain - it's also in pineapple and I read a post somewhere about curing the dog from dining on his own handiwork by adding crushed pineapple to his food. I have done this (I add it to their dog cookies) and he does seem less interested - takes a whiff and then turns away.
I would always recommend a vet check first - if the dog's okay and the diet's okay, the pineapple's worth a try. Papain is is often used for digestive complaints.

Posted on Feb 8, 2010 1:30:12 PM PST
Rodney says:
Pepper. And keep things as clean as you can. Most grow out of it but if you are fanatical about its presence, they often want to get rid of the bad thing they did before you see it.

Posted on Feb 8, 2010 4:11:24 PM PST
This poo-eating habit is likely caused by a vitamin deficiency. Start giving your dog a dailymultivitamin. I had this same problem with my minpin. She would run to the poo and grab it before I could stop her!! After I started giving her vitamins, she would sniff it but wasn't as interested. It really worked!
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