Why does my dog eat grass?

by Mark James on January 1, 2011

dog eating grassYou may choose to feed your dog with the juiciest steaks, succulent chicken breasts and kibble fit for a king, so why does he choose to chow down on grass when you take him for a walk?

Broadly speaking, there are two types of grass eating behaviour exhibited by your dog. The first is when he simply grazes, contently munching on the green stuff with no adverse effects. Some veterinarians have suggested that this may be due to a diet that may be lacking in certain trace elements, but he still may do this even when you’re feeding him a good quality, nutritionally balanced dog food. It may be that your pooch just likes the taste.

The other type is when he will eat grass quickly in order to make himself vomit. A dog that usually does this will swallow the grass as quickly as he can without chewing it – it may be that the long blades of it tickle his throat and induce his gag reflex. It may be that he does this if he has eaten something which has made him feel ill. If he eats grass, is sick, then is fine, he’s probably sorted himself out. If he continues to vomit, you need to get him to the vet as soon as possible.

You may ask yourself if grass is safe for your dog to eat. It’s harmless as long as the grass hasn’t been treated with fertilizers or pesticides – most lawn products will say on their packaging whether or not they are safe for your pet.

Whilst no-one is completely sure why dogs sometimes eat grass, the prevailing attitude amongst vets is that it is nothing to be worried over as it is normal behaviour for a dog.

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