A lot of you may wonder, “why is my dog eating grass?” This is one of the most frequently asked questions among dog owners. We believe the answer is a lot more simple than you think!
Have you ever been on a walk with your dog and they pull over for a little “grass-on-the-go”? Maybe you’ve caught them noshing on some blades in the backyard. Perhaps, just maybe, there is a reason that makes sense! Dogs have an innate ability to be aware when something is wrong within their bodies. Grass has a lot to do with digestion. We may be feeding them amazing meals, giving them enough exercise, and basically, the most wonderful life ever. However, some dogs still want to nibble on that blade.
Although, most dogs don’t typically graze on grass like a cow or a goat, they may still chew on it for a while and then spit it out. Some dogs even swallow it only to gag or vomit it right back up. In other instances you may see the entire undigested piece of grass in their stool. Whatever the reason may be for your dog snacking on some lawn roughage, most experts say that there is no harm in letting your dog dine on grass. In fact, grass contains some essential nutrient flavors dogs crave, especially if they’re on a commercial diet.
Some dogs eat grass because something is upsetting their stomach such as gas or bloat, and somehow the grass provides enough of a tickling sensation in the throat or stomach lining for them to have it exit the same way it went in. Other times, the grass is purely just a nutritional balancer. Then, there are a select few who search ever so meticulously for that one broad, luscious, succulent blade and then relish it like a fine wine. Grass is very fibrous and is hard to break down. Some theorize that it aids in passing of stools. Dogs have specific nutritional needs, and when a dog is not receiving those needs, functions are not going to perform properly.
Dogs are quite omnivorous, and most dogs would like to eat far more than they are fed! In the absence of a mid-afternoon meal, some may simply enjoy the process of chewing. It makes sense, right? It is equivalent to us chewing on a stick of gum in lieu of an unnecessary snack. The act of chewing somehow makes us feel a little more full. One can never rule out that for some, a nice tasty patch of crabgrass may simply give the impression of an afternoon snack in the sun!
It is believed that wild dogs main diet consists of purely whole prey. They consume the muscles, skin and organs of the entire animal. Although the majority of this diet is meat, the contents of the stomach contain plants, seeds and vegetative matter that the herbivorous prey had been eating. This is where they would get their roughage. Today dogs are much more domesticated and do not get that. The majority of them have been fed some sort of scientific kibble diet. So, eating grass is just a way of fulfilling what they’re missing in their diet.
There is one other potential reason why your dog may be munching on the green blades. Boredom. When puppies are bored they begin to consume things that are not food. This is called Pica. Dogs suffering from Pica may eat dirt, grass, socks, toys, and so on. (I think I just got a new BLOG idea!). Basically, if you want to control or prevent your dog from Pica, you need to keep your dog active with walks, runs, toy time, and/or other dogs. They need mental stimulation and physical activity.
There are a few motives why your dog may choose to nibble on grass. Generally, there are reasons and solutions for all of them!
Nausea: They will eat a few blades and then regurgitate it all back up. Basically, they’ve eaten something that is not agreeing with their stomach at the moment. Don’t worry! They can handle it. If it does become too often or more prevalent, a vet visit should be considered. We don’t want them ruining the linings of their stomachs or esophagus.
Lack of fiber: Depending on their diet, they may be in love with the idea of getting some extra nutrients and fiber to aid in their digestion. If you see your dog eating the grass, you may want to add some herbs such as parsley or vegetables to their diet. They, also, may feel a little pressure in their bowels and need some assistance to pass their stool. Again, don’t worry! They’ve got this!
Boredom & curiosity: When dogs are not given enough stimulation and physical activity, they may begin to eat random things around the house or yard to get that satisfaction. Sometimes a simple blade of grass does the trick. If you leave your pet home alone for long periods of time, be sure to keep a close eye on their oral behaviors to prevent any unnecessary chewing and eating habits from forming.
Whatever the reason for your dog eating grass, you should always be cautious that it has not been treated with herbicides, pesticides or any toxins. It is hard to know sometimes, but be as aware as you can. Afterall, your dog depends on you for health and wellness.
In conclusion, for the most part, there isn’t anything wrong with your pooch nipping on a few blades on grass in the yard or on one of their daily walks. We say let them enjoy the salad bar!
**As will all blogs or any information posted with regards to TC Raw Eats, these are purely OUR views based on our own research and personal experiences.