dog eating grass

Key takeaway

Your dog eating grass may be completely normal, but there may also be cause for concern if your dog is eating grass. Dogs may eat grass because of their instincts or for enjoyment, but it could also be the result of an upset stomach or pica. Occasional grass eating is normal, but you should take your dog to the vet if they’re eating grass and displaying symptoms of illness, such as vomiting.

It’s your job as a dog owner to keep an eye on your dog and investigate any strange behavior. If your dog is scratching excessively or losing hair, for example, you might want to get them tested for dog allergies or try changing to a different brand of food. But what should you do if your dog is eating grass? You may have several questions. Why is my dog eating grass? Should I be worried that my dog is eating grass? At what point does a dog eating grass become a sign of a potential medical issue that they should see a vet for?

The truth is, there’s no simple answer if you want to know why your dog is eating grass. Dogs eat grass for lots of different reasons, some of which are normal and some of which are signs of health problems or psychological issues. You might be worried if your dog has started eating grass suddenly, but it’s not always a big deal. If you’re worried about your dog eating grass or if your dog is exhibiting other symptoms of an illness, you can take them to the vet to see if there’s something wrong.

Frequency is an important thing to monitor when it comes to dogs eating grass. A dog eating grass every once in a while is normal, but a dog who eats grass obsessively may have a medical condition that’s causing them to eat so much grass. Frequent grass-eating along with vomiting and other symptoms may be a sign of pica or a similar medical condition. If you spot your dog eating grass, go outside when they do and keep an eye on them to monitor the situation.

Ultimately, it’s up to your vet to determine why your dog is eating grass and whether you should be worried or not. Your vet may ask you questions about what your dog eats, how much exercise your dog gets, and what kind of medical history they have. This information helps your vet figure out if your dog eating grass is normal or not.

Reasons Your Dog May Be Eating Grass

First things first, you’re probably wondering why your dog is eating grass. Sometimes dogs eat grass because they’re bored or they enjoy the flavor of it, but it could also be a sign that your dog has an upset stomach or is suffering from a condition such as pica. Dogs eating grass can even be the result of a dietary response. Here are some of the reasons you might spot your dog eating grass in the yard:

Pica

Pica is a medical condition that’s characterized by the craving of non-food substances that don’t actually provide any nutritional value. You might notice dogs eating all sorts of non-food substances, including feces, cloth, paper, and grass. It could be that your dog is suffering from pica and that’s why they’re eating grass.

Pica is the consistent consumption of substances with no nutrition

Dogs eating things like cloth and grass may not seem like a big deal, but certain substances can cause digestive and nutritional problems in dogs. Pica should be treated early on to avoid long-term medical issues.

While it’s fairly normal for puppies to explore by eating things, adult dogs don’t typically eat non-food substances unless it’s a result of pica. This condition doesn’t usually go away on its own, so you should talk to a vet if your dog has pica. Treatment for pica involves treating any underlying psychological or medical conditions, such as dog anxiety, that may be a contributing factor.

Instincts

One reason we think dogs eat grass is to follow their instincts. Before dogs were domesticated and kept as pets, they roamed the wilderness scavenging for their own food. Your dog might simply be doing what it instinctively knows to do by looking for food out in the yard. If that’s the case, it’s not a big deal if your dog is eating a little bit of grass.

If your dog is simply following its instincts, there’s not much you can get them to do to stop eating grass. Just keep an eye on your dog when they go outside and make sure they’re not exhibiting signs of illness or eating grass obsessively.

Stress or Boredom

You might not think about your dog getting stressed out or bored, but these can be two huge factors when it comes to your dog’s behavior, mood, and general health. Your dog might be stressed because there’s been a lot going on around the house, or they might be bored because they don’t get to socialize with other dogs. Stress and boredom can lead to lots of different issues in dogs, including your dog chewing paws and other habitual behavior.

If your dog is stressed out or bored, the solution is simple: relieve that stress or boredom. As much as your dog may enjoy a little bit of excitement, dogs don’t want to deal with constant stress and commotion around the house. It’s also important to make sure you’re taking your dog for walks and to the park regularly, because a dog eating grass could be a sign of simple boredom.

Upset Stomach

While there’s no solid evidence that says it’s true, most people theorize that an upset stomach is one of the more common reasons for a dog eating grass. This grass may act as an antacid for your dog, which can help settle down their stomach and relieve pain and other symptoms.

Keep in mind that there isn’t a ton of research regarding the effect grass has on dogs’ stomachs. Eating grass might not be helping your dog’s stomach, and your dog might not even eat grass because of an upset stomach. That being said, many vets agree that dogs may eat grass to settle an upset stomach.

Dietary Response

Grass might seem like a weird thing for dogs to eat, but it’s not entirely devoid of nutrition. In fact, grass has carbohydrates, protein, and fiber, which is why it’s used to feed livestock. Your dog might be eating grass for lots of reasons, but it could be that they just need a little more fiber in their diet. Your dog needs to get enough fiber for healthy bowel movements just like you do, so consider switching to a food with more fiber if your dog is having trouble defecating. 

Enjoyment

Dogs and humans are a lot different when it comes to what they do for enjoyment. While you might enjoy watching a movie or playing sports, your dog might like going out in the backyard and chewing on some grass. Dogs eating grass can be a sign of medical issues, boredom, and other things, but your dog might eat grass simply because they enjoy it. As long as your dog isn’t showing signs of illness or eating an excessive amount of grass, it shouldn’t be a big problem.

Some dogs eat grass simply because they enjoy it

If you don’t want your dog to spend so much time chewing on the lawn, consider finding ways to get your dog more active and keep them busy. You should take your dog for a walk every day if you have time, but you can also take them to the dog park, the beach, or anywhere else they may enjoy going.

What Should I Do If My Dog Is Eating Grass?

We understand if you’re a little worried about your dog eating grass, especially if you haven’t noticed that behavior in them before. You might be wondering what you should do if your dog is eating grass. Should you stop your dog from eating grass when you take them outside? Should you take your dog to the vet to see if they have pica or check for dog food allergy symptoms? The good news is, you probably don’t have anything to worry about if your dog is eating grass but isn’t displaying any other symptoms or odd behavior.

dog eating grass

If your dog is eating grass, make sure you go outside and keep an eye on them when you let them out. Take note of how often your dog is eating grass; is it something they do every time they go outside? You should also keep an eye on how your dog behaves after eating grass, including taking note of when your dog vomits, has trouble defecating, or displays other symptoms while eating grass. The frequency of grass-eating and the symptoms that come along with it can help you determine whether or not your dog eating grass is a problem.

Keep an eye out for your dog eating other non-food substances that may be an indicator of pica. It’s not unusual for dogs to chew on toys or tear apart cloth and paper, but there might be an issue if you notice your dog eating stuffed chew toys and other household objects. If you think your dog has pica, you should talk to your vet about what you can do to get your dog back on a regular diet again.

You should take your dog to the vet if you’re worried they may be eating grass because of a medical condition. A veterinarian can perform a full examination to figure out if your dog has an obstruction in their stomach or intestines, an illness or medical condition that’s causing grass-eating, or a lack of fiber in their diet.

Once your vet has figured out why your dog is eating grass, they’ll help you decide on the best course of action. Your vet may suggest switching to a brand of high-fiber food, or finding allergy-friendly food that doesn’t lead to dog dermatitis and dog food allergy symptoms. Ultimately, it’s up to your vet to decide what’s causing your dog to eat grass and what you should do about it.

Should I Stop My Dog from Eating Grass?

When most dog owners spot their dog eating grass, their initial reaction is to make them stop. After all, your dog should be eating food that’s made for them, not grass. The truth is, you probably don’t have to worry about stopping your dog from eating grass unless they’re displaying certain symptoms or eating an excessive amount of grass. However, there are some other factors to consider if you’re not sure if you should let your dog eat grass or not.

First off, you should talk to your vet if you’re concerned about your dog eating grass in the yard. While your dog eating grass could be a result of boredom,  following their instincts, or sometimes dogs eat grass because of a low-fiber diet or a medical condition such as pica. A vet can perform tests and a physical examination to determine if your dog has any serious medical conditions or if they’re just eating grass because it’s something they enjoy doing.

No matter what your vet says, you should keep your dog away from the grass if you’ve recently sprayed any chemicals or fertilizers that could be harmful to your dog. Dogs are naturally curious and tend to explore things they don’t recognize, which may lead to ingestion of substances.. Fertilizer, mulch, and pesticides can lead to poisoning in dogs, which can be fatal if you don’t take your dog to the vet for immediate treatment. If you’ve recently put something down to help your lawn grow or get rid of weeds, make sure you keep an eye on your dog when they’re outside until your grass is clean and safe again.

Poisonous plants are another thing to consider if you’ve got a green thumb. As much as you may enjoy a yard filled with flowers and a garden full of beautiful plants, there are lots of plants that are actually harmful to dogs. Some of the plants that are toxic to dogs include tulips, oleander, lily of the valley, daffodils, and azaleas. If you’ve got these plants around the yard, you need to either get rid of them or keep an eye on your dog when you let them outside. While some plants will simply cause vomiting and diarrhea in dogs, some plants are toxic enough to cause serious medical problems and even death.

Common plants toxic to dogs

My Dog Is Eating Grass: Frequently Asked Questions

Should I stop my dog from eating grass?

While you might be concerned about your dog eating grass, chances are you don’t need to stop your dog from eating grass. Dogs may eat grass to forage for food,  boredom, or because they like the way grass tastes. The fact that grass-eating is such a commonly observed behavior in dogs is a good sign that it’s generally nothing to worry about.

If your dog is eating grass and you notice vomit or stool that looks tarry or has a red tinge to it, that could be a sign of a medical condition. Excessive grass eating may also be a result of medical conditions in dogs, including pica. Ultimately, it’s up to your vet to decide what’s going on with your dog and whether their grass-eating is an issue or not.

Do dogs eat grass to settle their stomach?

You might have read online or heard people talking about dogs eating grass as a way to settle an upset stomach. This has been a common theory among dog owners and vets for quite some time, and dogs do seem to eat grass when they’re dealing with an upset stomach. Some people believe the grass your dog eats may act as an antacid, reducing the acid buildup in their stomach and providing relief.

While many people believe dogs eat grass to settle their stomach, the truth is that nobody knows. Dogs might eat grass to settle an upset stomach, but that grass-eating might simply be your dog trying to get more fiber in their diet or eating grass because they enjoy the flavor.

Does a dog eating grass mean anything?

For the most part, you don’t have anything to worry about if you notice your dog eating grass. There are lots of reasons a dog may eat grass, and most of them are nothing to worry about. As a dog owner, it’s your job to keep an eye on the symptoms your dog is displaying when they eat grass. If you notice your dog vomiting after eating grass, that’s cause for concern—especially if that vomit has a red tinge or tarry look. Take your dog to the vet if you think they might have a medical condition causing them to eat grass.

If you’re worried about your dog eating grass or if your dog won’t stop eating grass, you can take them to the vet for testing and a physical exam. Your vet can figure out if your dog is getting the nutrients it needs and whether or not they have any medical conditions that could lead to grass-eating.

What happens if a dog throws up white foam?

The appearance of your dog’s vomit can tell you a lot about the cause of that vomit. If your dog is throwing up white foam, you generally don’t have anything to worry about. Vomiting white foam is typically caused by an upset stomach, and that white color means there are no indicators of blood in the vomit or parvovirus. In fact, it’s fairly common for dogs to throw up white foam when eating a lot of grass.

Vomit that’s tinged red, tarry, or yellowish or brown may be a sign of a serious medical condition. Internal bleeding and other life-threatening medical conditions can also lead to vomiting. As long as your dog is vomiting infrequently and that vomit is white and foamy, you probably don’t have to worry. Still, it’s not a bad idea to take your dog to the vet to make sure.

Final Notes

Dogs do a lot of weird stuff, but eating grass has got to be up there near the top of the list. The good news is, you probably don’t have anything to worry about if you notice your dog eating grass. Your dog might eat grass due to boredom, because they enjoy the flavor, or because they want to forage for their own food. In some cases, dogs may eat grass as a result of pica or another medical condition. As long as your dog doesn’t do it too much, you can let your dog eat a little bit of grass.

Whether your dog won’t stop eating grass or has dog ear infection symptoms, you need a good vet. With Dutch, finding a vet you can rely on is easy. Dutch can connect you with a veterinarian online, so you can take good care of your pets from the comfort of your home. Your vet can even prescribe treatment that’s shipped to your front door. If you want to simplify pet care, just contact Dutch.