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Why Is My Puppy Eating Poop? Solutions Explained

Puppy stool eating is very common among puppies and is a completely solvable behavior. 25% of puppies have stool-eating behavior. Eating feces can spread parasites, and bacteria, and lead to gastrointestinal issues in puppies.

If your puppy has been showing poop-eating behaviors you may have found yourself asking the question, ‘Why is my puppy eating poop?’.

Worry not! After 7 years of professional experience, I can help you figure out why a puppy is eating stool and how you can stop it.

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Why is My Puppy Eating Poop?

As shocking as it may sound, it is very common for puppies to eat their own or some other dog’s poop. When I was a puppy parent for the first time I also thought, why is my puppy eating poop! As an experienced veterinarian.

I am here to tell you exactly why and how your puppy may have developed a palate for poop.

As an Effort of Cleaning Up

If you delay cleaning up after your little friend is done with their business, they may take things into their own hands. Eating their poop is a way to clean up the area. Undomesticated mother dogs often ingest their puppy’s feces to clean up. It is an instinct for many dogs.

Thus puppies are often born with this instinct.

Exploring New Tastes

Puppies often explore the world through tasting objects. They may just start eating feces as a result of their curiosity. Later on, they may like the taste and repeat the behavior.
To Get Your Attention

Poop eating can also be an attention-seeking behavior. It is natural for you to react when you see your puppy eating their poop. Your puppy may repeat this behavior to get your reaction whether it is positive or negative.

Nutritional Deficiency

Puppies need a very different and specific diet that will cater to their special nutritional needs. The nutritional needs also vary among different breeds, sizes and ages.

If you do not provide the best food according to your little friend’s nutritional needs, they may start eating their feces to cover up for this nutritional deficiency.

Medical Issues

Some health issues, such as malabsorption disorders or parasites, could lead to nutritional deficiencies, prompting a puppy to seek nutrients in feces.

Taste Preference

As gross as it may sound, your puppy can naturally develop a pallet for dog poop. It can be as simple as the puppy just liking the taste of poop. They may become less interested in regular food and repeat the behavior of coprophagia.


If you or the previous owner kept the puppy in confinement for a longer period they may develop a poop eating behavior. Confinement can often trigger stress and anxiety in puppies. Separation anxiety tends to make a puppy feel unstable. As a result, they may start eating their poop.

Observational Learning

If your puppy lives with other dogs who already have coprophagia, they may learn it from older dogs and act out themselves. This opens them to the risk 9 of developing coprophagia themselves.

why puppy eating poop

How to Stop Puppy from Eating Poop?

As of now you have your answer to the question, ‘Why is my puppy eating poop?’. It is time to know how to stop this behavior. Eating puppy stool can lead to health problems like parasitic infections, gastrointestinal issues, and potential nutrient deficiencies over time.

Here are 10 steps to stop a puppy from eating poop.

  • Step 1: Clean up right after your puppy’s potty tim.
  • Step 2: Provide a nutritious diet and maintain a healthy feeding schedule. Provide foods suitable to your puppy’s taste palate. Switch between foods to figure out what your puppy prefers.
  • Step 3: Implement obedience training and teach your puppy to follow the command,’ Leave It!’. Be consistent with your training and management strategies to help your puppy learn appropriate behavior over time.
  • Step 4: Ensure proper potty training while consistently following a schedule.
  • Step 5: Monitor your puppy and be aware of their whereabouts. If they are approaching feces, distract them with a toy or treat.
  • Step 6: Consider using taste deterrents specifically designed to discourage coprophagia.
  • Step 7: Work on reducing stress through gradual desensitization and positive reinforcement training.
  • Step 8: Avoid areas where your puppy can access feces until they are well trained to avoid poop eating.
  • Step 9: Take your puppy to a trusted veterinarian for regular checkups, in case they have any underlying medical issues that could be contributing to the behavior.
  • Step 10: Seek out professional help if you can feel the need. A professional dog trainer or behaviorist can offer effective assistance.

Final Words

For whatever reason your puppy may be eating poop, you must consider it a serious matter as stool-eating behaviors lead to many health hazards.

Now that you have your answer to the question, why is my puppy eating poop, and a complete step-by-step to stop stool-eating behavior in puppies, you can easily resolve this issue with resilience.

For more information on how to take care of your puppy visit our website.


Jessica Comstock

Jessica Comstock

As a passionate dog breeder with 7 years of experience, I've dedicated my career to ethically and responsibly breeding dogs. My expertise in genetics, breed standards, and nurturing environments has allowed me to produce healthy, well-tempered puppies, ensuring their future owners receive loyal and cherished companions.

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