Does your dog sometimes eat grass when playing at the park or in your yard? While this is common dog behavior, some dog owners are left wondering about this behavior. Find out why your dog is eating grass and what it means for your pet’s health.
Why do dogs eat grass?
Dogs often eat things they are not supposed to, from garbage scraps to furniture and shoes. Grass may be one of the things your dog likes to eat. Why is this? The answer could be simple: they enjoy the taste.
Dogs are omnivores and have a diet that consists of both meat and plants, so they have a taste for greens and the nutrients that they provide. Grass can have several health benefits for your dog. Firstly, it is high in fiber. Having fiber in the diet is beneficial for a dog’s digestion. Having roughage like grass in the stomach also helps other foods through your dog’s digestive tract. Grass is also a natural source of nutrients to add to their diet.
Is grass safe for dogs to eat?
There is a common belief that dogs eat grass in order to vomit if they have an upset stomach. Or similarly, that eating grass causes dogs to vomit. However, studies show that less than 25% of dogs vomit after eating grass, meaning that they are likely not using it as a form of self-medication. The correlation between dogs eating grass and vomiting isn’t backed with scientific evidence.
Veterinarians hold that eating grass is generally safe for dogs and can even aid with digestion. However, grass is not a substitute for food and pet owners should keep an eye on their dogs if they are displaying any unusual symptoms. If your dog does vomit after eating grass and appears sick, take them to the vet to make sure they don’t have any gastrointestinal issues or other underlying illness.
Make sure that your dog does not ingest grass with pesticides or other treatment on it. Keep them off of lawns and public places that are marked with signs that they have been treated. The safest place for your dog to eat grass is your own yard where you can keep the grass free from fertilizers and pesticides.
How to stop your dog from eating grass
If your dog is prone to eating grass, they may be wanting more vegetables in their diet. Start feeding them vegetables or incorporating fresh herbs into their diet. They may have a special taste for grass and vegetables and herbs will be a more nutritious alternative.
You can also try changing your dog’s food to see if that help curbs your pet’s grass-eating habit. Make small adjustments to your dog’s diet and see if there is a change in behavior.