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Why Do Dogs Eat Grass?

Nom nom

It’s the million-dollar question on every dog parent’s mind: Why does my dog eat grass?

According to petmd.com, “The modern dog, partly because of evolution and domestication, is no longer like its ancestors, which frequently ate their prey entirely, including the stomach contents of plant-eating animals. Instead, dogs today seek out plants as an alternative food source. Most commonly the plant is grass – since that is what is closest at hand – but wild canines are known to eat fruits, berries and other vegetable matter, too.”

So, it’s a nature vs. nurture thing? Maybe. Read on.

No Puking, Please

Better yet, why does my dog eat grass and then throw up?

Apparently, when dogs eat blades of grass, the tiny “hairs” on the blade tickle their throats and stomach, which causes your dog to vomit. It’s often said that dogs eat grass when they’re not feeling good and this is somewhat true, because vomiting gets the bad stuff out.

However, don’t get too worried when you see Fido munching on some grass. He’s probably fine and just, well, likes it.

“Typically, dogs will chew and graze more when they are feeling well. The more they chew the grass, the more the blade becomes saturated with saliva, and in becoming so, it is less ‘tickly’ as they swallow. These dogs may just be craving some roughage in their diet, or may find the texture appealing,” notes vetlive.com.

Got Grass?

You can relax, because most vets see no problem in letting your dog eat grass. Interestingly, grass could contain essential nutrients your dog craves. This is more typical among dogs on a commercial diet.

Petmd.com says, “If you notice that your dog has been munching away on grass or houseplants, then you may want to introduce natural herbs or cooked vegetables into their diet. Dogs aren’t finicky like cats, but they’re not too fond of raw veggies either. They’re kind of like big furry kids that way.”

Another thing you can do is give your dog his own patch of grass to munch on, as one of the biggest concerns about dogs eating grass is that most lawns are treated with chemicals that could make your dog very, very sick. By giving him a patch to snack on, you are ensuring that your dog is safe from ingesting harmful substances.

You could also give your dog a daily multivitamin with green tea and reishi to further safeguard his health and well-being.

Sonya Simpkins

Sonya Simpkins is a contributing writer for i Love Dogs, Inc. In her spare time, she loves to take her dogs for long hikes and treks to the beach, out to eat and on long road trips across the county. She then turns those adventures into useful advice for other dog parents who also love to take their dogs with them wherever they go.

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May 1, 2013 By : Category : DOG NEWS Tags:
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8 comments
BradRodgers
BradRodgers

This is good to know. Mt little dog Buster really seems to like grass. He munches away on it whenever he sees a patch that stands taller than the surrounding grass, ( This is also an excuse to stop walking and sniff away & leave a leak :) ) Funny things that animals do. Glad for the info, thanx. :)

 

candy7
candy7

Not only do dogs just choose to eat grass.  Usually when dogs starts pooping blood it can be a sign that they need worm medication.  Usually this is the time they choose to nibble on blades of grass which help them expel worms, by vomiting and pooping.

LeslieAnnJones
LeslieAnnJones

Great article- I have this discussion with my clients very often.  Dogs are more omnivorous than dog-food companies might have us believe.  To that end, fruits and vegetables (raw or cooked) are great for dogs and I recommend them daily.  No onions, grapes/raisins but otherwise, they are a great alternative to any purchased, processed treat you can offer.  Apples, green beans, carrots are generally big hits, and my dogs eat the cherry tomatoes off my plants in my garden!  

LifeInTheDogLane
LifeInTheDogLane

Just have to watch out for ants or spiders clinging to the grass that could bite or sting the dog's lips, tongue, mouth, or throat on the way down!

JcLoh
JcLoh

I noticed that my 2 dogs eat grass whenever they are not well and seem to recover just as quickly.  My mom says grass has healing properties and the dogs know it too.

BradRodgers
BradRodgers

 @LeslieAnnJones

 I knew about the grapes, raisins, almonds, chocolate, but didn't know about onions. "Buster" loved green onions and tomatoes when he was a puppy, still likes raw carrots, pieces of potatoes, peas, peaches, nectarines, Granny-Smith & Macintosh apples, ( doesn't like any others,---at least none that I've offered ). Seems to like pasta,---Especially Lasagna. Not that he gets much of anything like that, but a little taste sometimes, ( I don't believe anyone who says different ) can't be the end of the world for him. Good-Day to you :) 

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