It seems like every time I turn around my dogs are eating something they shouldn’t be eating.
One thing I’ve seen my dogs eating sometimes is grass and it started the wheels turning in my mind.
I started wondering how natural it is when dogs eat grass and whether I should be concerned if and when my dogs eat grass.
So I decided to research the subject, not only for myself but for anyone that is wondering why their dogs eat grass.
Some reasons may seem more obvious than others but let’s get into the subject so you can learn what I’ve learned about why dogs eat grass.
Why Do Dogs Eat Grass?
When dogs eat grass, it can be for many different reasons. Some reasons that may cause your dog to eat grass include an upset stomach, boredom, a nutrition deficiency, improving digestion, treating intestinal worms, and more.
Many veterinarians consider grass-eating a normal behavior for dogs. But the dogs aren’t eating grass because it tastes good are they, so why do dogs eat grass?
Some experts suggest that when a dog eats grass, the dog may be eating the grass to help ease its stomach if it is sick.
Dogs instinctively ingest the grass in an attempt to induce vomiting to get rid of whatever in their stomach is making them sick.
Once ingested, the grass can act as a natural antacid that helps soothe the dog’s stomach or make the dog vomit.
About 25% of the dogs that ingest grass will vomit the grass back up to help with their upset stomach.
6 Reasons Dogs Eat Grass
Here are 6 of the most plausible reasons your dog may be eating grass:
- Boredom – Most experts believe this is the main reason dogs eat grass. Some dogs eat grass just because they are bored and eating grass is a way to stimulate them.
- Improve Digestion – Some dogs are believed to eat grass to help with digestion issues or to improve their digestion.
- Instinct – Some people believe dogs eat grass simply because of their instinctual behavior passed down from their wild dog ancestors.
- Nutrition Deficiency – Another suggested reason some dogs eat grass is to ensure their nutritional needs are being met. If dogs don’t get enough nutrients, they may resort to eating grass to help supplement the nutrients they aren’t getting from their diet.to help in maintaining good health.
- Tastes Good – Some believe dogs eat grass simply because they enjoy the taste of grass.
- Treat Intestinal Worms – Some believe that dogs eat grass to get their intestines to expand to help them with intestinal worms.
Why Do Dogs Eat Grass When They Are Sick?
Sometimes dogs eat grass when they have become sick or when they have an upset stomach. When dogs get sick, they are trying to induce vomiting by eating the grass.
However, this theory is debated by some because they believe dogs lack the intelligence to know when or how to induce vomiting.
Some people believe that dogs aren’t smart enough to understand that grass will make them vomit by eating it when they are sick.
These people believe that dogs would have to be aware that grass will make them vomit while they are sick to eat the grass because they are sick.
Maybe these people are onto something or maybe dogs just eat grass as instinctual behavior when they are sick.
These people believe dogs aren’t smart enough to eat the grass when they are sick but it may not be an intellectual issue at all and may just be instinctual when they are sick.
As I mentioned earlier, studies suggest that about 25% of these dogs end up inducing vomiting by eating the grass.
Regardless of whether you believe dogs are smart enough to eat grass because they know it will induce vomiting or for another reason, it is important to get your dog checked out by a vet if you believe your dog is sick.
Why Do Dogs Eat Grass When It Rains?
There is no evidence to suggest that dogs eat grass differently when it rains versus when the grass is dry.
There are some people who believe when a dog eats grass it is about to rain, but there is no evidence to suggest that dogs can accurately predict when it is going to rain and eat grass because of it.
It is likely that your dog eats grass after or while it’s raining just because that is when it decided to eat the grass.
It probably has nothing to do with the fact it is raining or had just rained but is just more of a coincidence than anything else when your dog eats grass when it rains.
Should You Let Your Dog Eat Grass?
This is debatable and up to you and your pooch. Most report that dogs are just eating grass because they are bored and there is nothing wrong with the dogs.
In fact, evidence suggests that only around 10% of dogs that eat grass are reported as sick before they ate the grass.
Most times, eating the grass will cause no issues and you can go on about your day.
However, if you believe your dog is sick (whether it is eating grass or not), get your dog checked out by your vet just to be sure.
If my dogs eat grass, I don’t mind. But I will keep an eye on them just to see if there are any other indicators that they may be sick.
My two dogs eat grass on occasion and have vomited once or twice. But they’ve had no other symptoms and didn’t repeat the process over and over.
If your dog continues to eat grass consistently, just get them checked out to be sure all is okay to keep your mind at ease.
Is It Dangerous for Your Dog to Eat Grass?
The only danger that eating grass imposes on your pooch is that it may vomit. However, if the grass has been coated with fertilizer or other chemicals, then that could cause more problems and make the dog sicker.
Just be mindful if your dog is playing outside and you have recently coated your lawn with fertilizer or some other chemical and make sure they don’t ingest any.
Natural grass should not hurt your dog and will either help the dog soothe its stomach or cause it to vomit the grass back up, but shouldn’t cause any long-term ill effects unless the dog has some type of chemical or fertilizer on it.
Getting Your Dog to Stop Eating Grass (6 Tips)
The first step in answering this question is to try and identify why your dog is eating grass in the first place.
Is it because they are sick, do they eat grass because they are bored, do they need more vitamins and minerals in their diet, etc?
These kinds of questions need to be assessed first before you can determine the best route to get your dog to stop eating grass.
1. Boredom – If you think your dogs eat grass because they are bored, try to have more activities with your dogs when you are outside or get them a toy for outside so they have something to mess with and keep them busy and stimulated so they don’t get bored so easily.
This is especially true if your dog is a pup or a younger dog. They need more stimulation than most older dogs, so pups and younger dogs tend to be more prone to eating grass out of boredom.
2. Improve Digestion – If you believe your dog eats grass to improve digestion, check with your vet to see if you need to change up your dog’s diet or to see what other courses of action they suggest.
3. Instinct – If you believe your dogs eat grass because it is just an instinctual behavior, the best you can do is keep your dogs busy when they are outside to keep their mind off eating the grass.
This falls in line with your dog being bored or trying to stimulate itself.
4. Nutrition Deficiency – If you think your dog eats grass because it has a nutrition deficiency, consult your veterinarian for suggestions.
The vet may suggest changing up your dog’s diet to help ensure they are getting the proper nutrients they need in its diet. You can try dog vitamins and see if that helps.
5. Tastes Good – If you believe your dog is eating grass because they think it tastes good, there isn’t a whole lot to do here.
The best you can do is keep your dog occupied with other activities while outside to keep its mind off the grass.
6. Treat Intestinal Worms – If you believe your dog eats grass because it has worms, contact your vet to see the best course of action.
They will probably want you to come in and get your dog examined to determine if your dog has worms or not.
If you can’t afford a vet or want to try and deworm your dog on your own, you can check out products at your local pet store.
I hope this article helps you understand most of the typical reasons why dogs eat grass.
Many experts suggest that when dogs eat grass it is just normal behavior for dogs and there isn’t anything to worry about.
However, it is always better to be safe than sorry.
So if you feel like there may be a bigger issue going on with your dog, do not hesitate to get in contact with your local vet and see what they suggest for your dog.
If your dog eats grass and vomits after, keep an eye on your dog and contact your vet if you feel it isn’t just a one-time thing.
We all love our pooches and want nothing but the best for them.
Does your dog eat poop as well? If so, check out this article I wrote about why dogs eat poop.
I’ve also written many other articles about dogs.
That’s all I have about dogs eating grass. I hope you were able to learn some things today I and look forward to writing more articles for your viewing pleasure.