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Does your dog often eat grass during his daily walks? Does your four-legged friend seem to see your lawn as a salad bar? Eating grass is a fairly common habit in our canine buddies. In this article, a local Leesburg, VA veterinarian discusses Fido’s predilection for eating grass.
Eating grass is actually a form of pica, which is the official term for eating things that aren’t food. While some dogs eat dangerous items like screws or nails, or even chomp on cell phones, many of our canine friends prefer fresh grass. Wild dogs have also been observed eating grass, so it does seem to be a natural behavior, at least to some extent.
For the most part, eating grass isn’t dangerous. That said, you’ll want to be sure not to let your pet eat grass that has been treated with pesticides, fertilizer, or insecticides, as he could end up ingesting harmful chemicals. There’s also a chance that your furry friend could eat toxic plants. These things could make your furbaby very sick! Your dog may also have an increased risk of picking up parasites if he eats grass, so be sure to keep up on your furry buddy’s parasite prevention. If Fido frequently vomits after eating grass, he may have a medical issue. Contact your vet immediately for further assistance.
There are several possibilities as to why Man’s Best Friend likes to eat grass, though the jury is still out as far as finding an official or universal cause. Some studies suggest that dogs that eat grass may want or need more fiber in their diets. Others think that it aids Fido with digestive issues, or could help settle an upset tummy. Boredom is another possibility. There’s also a good chance that your canine pal just likes the taste!
Make sure your pooch is getting a good, nutritious diet. Ask your vet for specific recommendations, including portion sizes. You’ll also want to be sure you’re providing your canine buddy with plenty of fun toys and entertainment options. Last but not least, keep up with Fido’s veterinary appointments, and stay up-to-date with his regular checkups and wellness care.
Do you have questions about your dog’s health or care? Call us! As your Leesburg, VA veterinary clinic, we are strongly committed to providing all our furry clients with excellent veterinary care.