Dogs, especially young dogs, often have a tendency to eat strange things. Our experience is that this is often feces of the dog itself or of horses. But sometimes they also eat other objects, such as boulders, iron objects, socks, gloves and wipers.
The phenomenon of eating foreign objects is also called pica. As the age progresses, we see that the phenomenon is usually less.
Very often owners ask: “Why does my dog ??do this and what can I do about it?”. Our theory behind this phenomenon is that the bowel function of the young dog does not yet work sufficiently. It is a theory and difficult to prove.
A good bowel function consists of :
– A well-adjusted bowel movement (intestinal motility). In the intestinal wall there are smooth muscles that provide bowel movements that ‘massage’ the intestinal contents (food that is digesting) backwards. Some of these smooth muscles run in the longitudinal direction of the intestines and one part runs circularly in the intestinal wall. A good bowel movement is created through well-coordinated cooperation between these two groups of muscles.
– A well-balanced and well-developed intestinal life (intestinal flora). In the intestines of a healthy dog ??(both thin and large intestines) live millions of micro-organisms, especially ‘good’ bacteria (called the intestinal flora), which play a very important role in the digestion process. This intestinal flora is not yet well developed in a young dog. A young dog with ‘pica’ is therefore looking for good bacteria, but also for fibers that the good bacteria attach themselves to.
GROUNDS FOR EATING LOTION AND / OR OTHER FOREIGN OBJECTS
– The above-mentioned good bacteria are fully in stool: stool is actually almost nothing other than undigested fiber with many bacteria. So this is the first reason for eating poo; especially horse droppings are rich here. In fact, this is also one of the reasons why fruit and vegetables are so healthy for humans: it is a source of good fiber where intestinal bacteria (the intestinal flora) can attach themselves.
– The second reason for eating faeces is the following: a young dog is growing and needs many building materials. If the digestive device, the intestine, still works poorly, nutrient deficiencies may occur; for example, proteins and vitamins. Here too, for example, horse droppings are full, because in the thick intestines of a horse many bacteria grow which consist of, among other things, proteins and where vitamins are made. A rabbit eats its own soft poo for the same reason (coprophagy).
– A third reason is the intestinal cramps that can occur in the dog as a result of the incorrect cooperation of the longitudinally running and the circular running smooth muscles in the intestines. And a dog with stomach ache eats crazy things. Everyone knows the phenomenon of the dog with abdominal pain that will eat grass with the intention of vomiting.
What can you do against eating stools ?
When eating faeces, you can try to provide substances to your dog so that the healthy intestinal flora develops faster or that directly eliminates the shortage of the substances your dog is looking for.
For a faster development of the healthy intestinal flora you can think of feeding a small piece of raw rumen every day. In the rumen of a cow (or of another ruminant) there is also a gigantic microflora. This would allow you to apply a flora in the young dog intestine. Giving every day a small piece of eggbread or pineapple, which is sometimes said, may perhaps provide the need for substances that the young dog is short of. These are just a few examples of the many things a young dog can be looking for. Fibers in vegetables or fruit (banana, orange, apple) and good bacteria in a good pro- and / or pre-biotic. Our clinic can help you with a good pro-biotic.
Medication to be used when eating foreign objects
When eating other objects (iron, stones, cloths, etc.) you can give medicines that regulate the bowel movement. Buscopan is a medication that relieves the intestinal cramps. Emeprid regulates the cooperation between the longitudinally running and the circular smooth muscle muscles. Furthermore, there are also known remedies in homeopathy that can help to reduce the consumption of stones, for example.