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Why do dogs eat grass?

Why do dogs eat grass? The dog is an omnivore. Even if its diet is (and must be) composed mostly of proteins of animal origin (that is, in nature, from the meat of its preys), there is also a percentage of food made up of different elements.

These range from various detritus of biological origin – food remains, carrion and even excrement of other animals – up to some plants which, however, are not limited to vegetables for dogs. And why is soon said.

Why do dogs eat grass if they love meat?

Unlike what happens for the cat, the dog’s diet must in fact include – in addition to the unavoidable meat – also fats, carbohydrates and vegetables which contain fibers, vitamins, minerals and other very useful trace elements and that explains why dogs eat grass.

At the same time, however, as the most attentive owners know, not all dogs spontaneously (and willingly) feed on grass or other “green” foods.

Therefore, in order to be able to remedy this lack, it is essential to understand how the dog makes its food choices and which foods it really needs and therefore only in this way will we understand why dogs eat grass.

What do dogs eat in nature?

Most of the canids nourish, in nature, of preys of different sizes which are hunted directly or which are “consumed” when they are found already dead by the hungry predator.

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Already in these, of course, it is found a non-negligible part of vegetables, which remain in the stomach of the preys being, for the most part, herbivorous animals.

But these are implemented, in the dog’s diet, by detritus of biological origin which can have a very varied nature and, consequently, a composition (as demonstrated by the BARF diet).

However, we must not forget that the contemporary dog, which became domesticated for over 10 thousand years, has – over the centuries – extensively explored the human diet and its intestine has only been able (partially) to adapt to this change.

This, as the four-legged owners well know, does not mean at all that the dog can consume human delicacies, but simply that its diet can, by now, afford to be relatively more varied than that of its hunting progenitor.

When do dogs eat grass?

In any case, the keywords for correct dog nutrition are: quality and balance. In practice, therefore, it is necessary to offer Fido good quality nutrients in sufficient quantity for his specific case (neither too much nor too little).

The dog’s diet, therefore, also needs a part of vegetable fibres which can be proposed upstream by choosing the best food for dogs (including dog food, home-made food, etc.) or which the furry pet can look for autonomously by nibbling a few blades of grass from time to time.

Here, then, is when dogs eat grass but, as will be very clear at this point, dogs that can count on a balanced diet will have no need to consume tufts of grass because they will find the vegetable fibers they already need in their bowl.

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Dog eats grass and vomits: why

The dog eats grass because – just like cats do – our pets feel the need to naturally reduce any gas present in the stomach or to start digestion following a stomach ache.

The dog eats grass but doesn’t vomit

What changes and leads the dog to vomit is the chewing method some grass.

Since this is well chewed, in fact, it passes easily through the intestine until it is expelled through the feces.

The dog eats grass quickly

On the other hand, when our furry friend feels the need to induce vomiting (for example to expel a foreign body) he will ingest the long blades of grass after a quick and superficial chewing.

Like this, the herb itself will tickle the stomach inducing vomiting, i.e. causing a movement which will result in vomiting.

What does it mean when a dog eats a lot of grass?

However, if the dog shows an excessive tendency to eat grass, showing an almost compulsive behavior, it is necessary contact your vet to establish the cause which can be of food, organic or behavioral origin.

Article reviewed by:

Francesco Reina
Veterinary assistant