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Grass eating and diarrhea

May 29th, 2006, 08:09 AM
This is another "settle a bet" question between my husband and me. He took Cooper on a walk Friday and came home complaining because Cooper stopped to eat grass the whole time. He said "He must be sick, he kept wanting to eat grass."

I never let him eat grass, or anything else, on a walk. He tries. Since the first day we've had him he has wanted to eat anything he can outside. But Tom insisted that dogs will do that when they're sick. Since he was being walked in the neighborhood I got pretty upset. I don't know which houses have their grass treated. Some post little signs if they have a lawn service but some people put chemicals on the lawn themselves and you would have no way of knowing.

Well he had diarrhea in the night that night.(Cooper, not Tom, at least not that I know of;) ) Then he was fine yesterday, normal poops, and the vet said to him on his kibble.(Wellness puppymix) He did get some rogue pieces of Taylor Ham though. Last night diaarrhea again. The vet wasn't too concerned and said to start him on the chicken and rice diet. The last time he had diarrhea, months back, it wanted to hang on and he had to stay on the chicken and rice for a while. She thinks that's just the way his system works. Any other food too soon and it comes right back. But if he still has it tomorrow we'll run a stool sample.

Any thoughts ? Do you think it's a coincidence? Too much grass eating? Could it be the heat? He's got his summer cut but still it's rather hot out and he insisted on being out with his humans yesterday. I try to keep him in the shade with his water, but it was still pretty hot.

May 29th, 2006, 09:59 PM
In my experience, grass eating leads to vomiting if they eat too much. But then again, Boo eats his weight in grass if you let him and never has any effects from it. No diarrhea, no vomiting, nothing. But I've never known a dog to get diarrhea from grass though.

May 29th, 2006, 11:34 PM
So Tom might not be wrong then? :rolleyes: LOL !! I love those chances to say "I told you so."

Cooper seems to be fine today. He's enjoying his chicken and rice and had a normal poop. I remember when my kids were young a hot day would bring on diarrhea because they would drink too much, too fast.

Thanks for the response. It's great to be able to run these things by more experienced pet owners.

May 30th, 2006, 01:24 AM
I don't have any special knowledge about grass-eating dogs except that mine always eat grass when they are sick at their stomach or constipated. I was told it is a dog's natural way of trying to restore proper gut function - it's the equivalent of eating roughage for humans. They may end up with diarrhea because of the stomach problems, not the grass itself.

On the other hand, this may be an old wives tale. I don't really know.

May 30th, 2006, 11:06 AM
So Tom might not be wrong then? IMO, he is wrong. The grass usually doesn't cause diarrhea. The diarrhea is separate and like DRN said, the diarrhea/upset stomach probably came first and then the doggy ate the grass to try to feel better.

May 30th, 2006, 01:15 PM
In my experience dogs will eat grass just because they like it, or will sometimes eat a whole bunch if their stomach is a bit off. Depends on the dog.
However, if your dog already has some GI issues, as mine do, eating grass can cause diaharria or mucousy stool.

May 30th, 2006, 02:21 PM
If your dog doesn't usually eat grass, maybe it caused diahrea just by being something his tum isn't used to. But grass in general does not cause a dog to get diahrrea. :) My dog and my parents' cat ADORED crabgrass and would "compete" to get the pieces that were by the fence where the mower couldn't reach. They'd just walk along the fence grazing, LOL!

Ebony always tried to eat grass on walks too and I tried not to let her because I didn't know what pesiticides had been used on it. But if we were in an area that obviously wasn't tended (like this one small, natural state park), then I'd let her graze. ;) I read somewhere that dogs like grass because in nature wolves would get greenery when they ate the contents of a deer's stomach. I don't know if that's true, but it's an interesting thought!

May 30th, 2006, 06:05 PM
My last two huskies ate grass all the time and the one I have now does too. Occassionally they would have a mucousy poop with grass in it or else throw up foamy stuff with grass in it. Never caused them any real problems though.