The Poop Eating Problem

One of the biggest concerns that dog owners have is that habit that their pet has of eating poop.

Why do they engage in a habit that is so terribly DISGUSTING?

The problem varies from dog to dog, with some preferring the frozen poop treats in winter, while others like to go for the fresh poop.

No-one knows for sure why dogs do this, but there are a few theories out there:

  • Dogs go after the poop to gain access to some of the nutrients in the food that they eat which they still consider usable. This seems a little far-fetched.
  • Dogs are sniffing out the nutrient and minerals that they need. Again, not likely given that modern foods are rich in all that a dog needs.
  • They are using the same approach that foals use, which is to eat the stool of the mother in order to get the right bacteria into the gastrointestinal tract. This may hold some truth..


There isn’t really one surefire way to get your dog to stop eating poop. Listed below are a few that might work, although you may need to try all of them:

  • The most effective way to get your dog to stop eating poop is to clean it up ASAP. If you can train your dog to poop into a scooper, all the better.
  • Talk to your vet about a product called “For-Bid,” which is a dog food additive that is supposed to leave the stool tasting foul.
  • If you can’t get a hold of that product, you may find some success by adding a meat tenderizer into the food, as it has a similar type of effect. There is also a product called Stop Eating Poop (S.E.P.) that some owners have had success with.
  • Make sure that you take your dog out every time he has to go, and teach a command like “LEAVE IT” when he starts sniffing around the poop.
  • Who doesn’t love a little added flavor on their food? That would be dogs, especially is that added flavor comes via Tabasco sauce. Sprinkle a good amount on the stool that is laying around, and there is a good chance your dog will give it a pass.
  • Bitter apple or orange are other flavors he won’t care for.
  • If you have a dog that goes in for the meal the moment after it has left his body, your only real hope of getting him to kick the habit is to take him out on the leash every time, and teach him the LEAVE IT command.

What about dogs that also get a kick out of cat poop?

If you also have a cat at home, you have probably caught your dog grabbing a snack out of the litter box more than once. You don’t have the options of spraying bitter products here, as the cat will steer clear of a box that has any such changes made to it. The easiest solution to this problem is to put the litter box in a place that the cat can access, but which the dog can’t get to. This could be something as simple as a baby gate blocking off the room where the litter box is kept. You can also have a door that only opens enough to allow the cat through, or perhaps a little kitty flap in the door that keeps the dog out.

One thing to keep in mind is that the new types of clumping litter can pose potential health problems for dogs who eat it. The stomach of your dog can react the way that the litter does when it is exposed to urine.

This is a habit that can be stopped, but you really have to be prepared to be diligent and take the time to train your dog so that he knows this behavior is not allowed.