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How do you stop a dog from eating his poop?

April 15th, 2007, 09:38 PM
Hi everyone, I'm new on here so I hope I'm posting in the right place but I don't know what else to do. I'm a mom of two young children (2-year-old boy, and a 7-month-old girl) and we have two cats and an almost-4-year-old English Yellow Lab named Emmitt. He's SUCH a great dog, and EXTREMELY good with the kids - I couldn't ask for a better dog! But he's eating his poop and, aside from the obvious health issues, I just can't have him doing that and then licking the kids (Emmitt loves giving kisses). I've tried so many things to get him to stop. I've heard that dogs eat their poop because of a vitamin deficiency, or boredom, not enough physical/mental stimulation, anxiety/stress. So my husband and I switched Emmitt from Benneful to this all-natural dog food made by Blue Buffalo (it's has all these vitamin supplements that I read are very good for dogs). After being on that a week, he was still eating his poop. So we tried putting chunk pineapple in with his food to make the poop taste awful, but he still ate his poop. So we tried a product called Distaste and gave him exactly the amount specified and, after a couple weeks on that, my husband caught him eating his poop today! I could understand if he was outside all day by himself then he might be doing it out of boredom. But he scratches on the door to go out, and after two minutes of being out there, he heads straight for the poop that he just left earlier that same morning. So that tells me that he's not scratching on the door b/c he has to go to the bathroom, but rather b/c he just wants a little mid-morning snack. I just don't know what else to try. The only other idea my husband and I have is that during the first week on the Distaste Emmitt was still eating the Blue Buffalo food. Then, when he finished the bag, we put him back on the Benneful thinking that it wasn't a vitamin deficiency at all. And, according to my husband, there was more poop out in the yard two weeks ago as opposed to the this past week. And to quote my husband, "The poop's gotta go somewhere, and I certainly didn't pick it up." Could it still be a vitamin deficiency? How long does it take before each remedy we try will start to work? Someone PLEASE help us!!!!! --Cheryl

April 15th, 2007, 09:53 PM
There's no way you can go out there with him and poopnscoop? That would be the most effective, IMO, especially since he doesn't seem to be eating it right away.

April 15th, 2007, 09:59 PM
I agree with Prin, just head out back, scoop it up and throw it away. Is your pup eating cat poop as well?

April 17th, 2007, 05:06 AM
... a sidebar, you might want to check out our food forum. You could do much MUCH better in a quality kibble than Beneful.

April 17th, 2007, 06:20 AM
I agree you should think about changing his food Beneful is not a particularly good food. Look for something with no corn and the meat should be the first ingredient. A good natural food will have more vitamins and less filler this may help and you will also find a big difference in the size of his poops there won't be nearly as much to clean up. Welcome to the board.

April 17th, 2007, 03:01 PM
The reason there was more poop when you switched Emmett to the Blue Buffalo was because he went from eating a real crappy food to a premium and was getting rid of all the toxins from being fed the Beneful. It will take at least two to three months to do so.

Please put him back on a premium/holistic food as it is much better for him. You feed less, he will eventually poop less and you will have a healthier dog which means less trips to the vet.

I agree with the others that you should pick up his poops after he goes and not leave them lying around. You should also teach him the "leave it" command.

April 17th, 2007, 03:35 PM
Bree use to do that also, after changing her food (for about a month) and picking up right after she goes and teaching her leave it command Bree only does it once in a blue moon. It take time and paitence, you should be able to see a difference.

put Emmett back on Blue Buffalo and give it a chance to work. :)

April 17th, 2007, 03:41 PM
There really is only one answer to this question and that's pick the poop up,right away,no yummy poop around,he cannot eat any:dog: and he'll have a wonderful sweet smelling breath:D

April 17th, 2007, 03:49 PM
my mom has had GREAT luck with S.E.P. (Stop Eating Poop) by Solid Gold. Her dog has had this problem, and she's tried just about everything. It's a supplement that you sprinkle in the food. Here's a link to it online:

April 18th, 2007, 09:22 AM
THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU to everyone who responded!! I really appreciate everyone's advice and will certainly be taking all of it! I'll definitely switch Emmitt back to the Blue Buffalo food and start keeping on top of those poops better. Emmitt does know the "leave it" command although he chooses not to listen sometimes. And I'm going to check out that S.E.P. stuff. I'm willing to do anything at this point. It's just hard right now b/c I'm home with my toddler and infant and there are days when it's harder to supervise and pick up poop than others. But I'm going to do my best! Thank you again and I'll keep checking this board to see if any more advice pops up.

Thanks everyone!!!!!!

April 18th, 2007, 10:02 AM
One of my dogs use to eat her own poop. I think eventually they do grow out of it and that is what has happened in our case. Once she ate poop and threw it up in the house. That was pretty bad so I can understand your concern!

Our vet wasn't too keen on the food additive stuff because they don't always work and she didn't feel it was a deficiency. I'm not sure why some dogs do this - I've heard different explanations for it. Apparently it is common for wild animals to eat poop so I don't know if that makes you feel better - it is still a disgusting habit especially to us humans. Ours would have poo belches which would clear the room and nobody wanted kisses!

The best thing I did was to be consistent in picking it up after they go out. The "leave it" command is also good. Although our one decided to try and be sneaky about it - going under the deck or waiting until we weren't watching.

It can be a difficult thing to deal with but that is the best advice I have from experience and it may make you feel better to know that he may grow out of it as well!

April 18th, 2007, 10:15 AM
My Tasha has this problem, but it is with rabbit poop in our backyard or geese poop when we go for walks. It really is disgusting. It is difficult to pick up the rabbit poop in the backyard, so I'm not sure how to stop her. Any suggestions from anyone regarding the rabbit poop issue? Thanks.

April 18th, 2007, 10:43 AM
My other dog is a connoisseur of other species poo as well but she's not into her own poo like our other dog.

It's hard to pick up rabbit poo that's for sure! and to anticipate what poo she may find on an off-leash walk. This stuff seems like candy to her :yell:

If they don't eat it, well, why not roll in it! I'm not sure what is worse sometimes!

April 20th, 2007, 11:34 AM
i asked my ex-vet the same question....''it's natural.'' yeah, and i'm a size 3...anyway, she said to try pepper, or hot sauce- i told her with my luck, he would love it, when we had 3 dogs, he would just trail behind them, and wait for his snack. u have to watch them vigilantly, and pick it up too. natural?? i never had another dog who did this. but, i also had a dog, who loved to eat bark-no, not for her voice. they said it was lack of nutrients.