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With a saddened heart after 18 years of serving the Charlotte pet community, we are closing PET Essentials on September 30, 2017. Thank you!
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How to Get Your Dog to Stop Eating Grass

Dogs eat grass for a variety of reasons.  Some experts believe its either to get more fiber into their diets, your dog is trying to induce vomit, or it suffers from a condition called pica where your pet simply craves non-food items. The general consensus is that grass isn’t terrible for your dog; however, if your lawn has been treated or sprayed with any chemicals then it could potentially be harmful. While many vets consider the eating of grass by dogs a normal behavior, there are some steps you can take to get your dog to stop eating grass.

The first step is introducing more fiber into your dog’s diet.  There’s some speculation that dogs eat grass to induce vomit from leftover stomach acid from within their stomachs. Dogs tend to think the grass will give them fiber to help with any indigestion. However, grass has little to any nutritional value to add to your dog’s diet. Add more fiber to your dog’s diet by giving it steamed broccoli, carrots, or string beans throughout the day. These healthy snacks will help with adding more fiber to your dog’s diet, level out the indigestion, and gives your dog a low calorie snack in comparison to other doggie treats.  Another step you can take to help your dog quit grass is to introduce new dog food.  We can’t read the minds of our dogs, but it’s not hard to believe that it just might be getting bored of its kibble and is looking to switch things up a bit. In addition, Pica can also be a result of nutrient deficiency or hunger. Introducing premium, high quality dog food will ensure your dog gets all the vitamins and minerals it needs to stay healthy and strong. Keep in mind that most dogs have sensitive digestive tracts and switching your dog’s food should be a slow process. Start with only replacing a quarter of a cup with the good stuff and build week after week until a full transition is made. This will keep the alteration of your dog’s diet from upsetting his stomach. If you are already using premium dog food, then try giving your pooch more chewing sticks or bones to keep himself entertained. Throw some toys and bones outside so if your dog gets bored, he can chew on a tasty bone instead of the grass.  The last step you can take is better training. Old habits are hard to break so if you have a young pup that is eating grass, let them know with a simple command such as ‘No’ or ‘Leave it.’ Try reinforcing these statements by rewarding your dog with treats when it stops eating the grass. These commands can also be used at the dinner table and other places around the house so that your dog fully understands when it’s not ok to eat or chew on something.

Our dogs are not foodies and should be given the best nutrition available at all times. Even though clean grass doesn’t hurt your dog, it still doesn’t do much for its overall health. Follow these steps and get your dog to leave the grass alone for good.