Why It’s a Bad Sign if Your Dog Eats and Licks Dirt

Dirt

Dogs are full of strange behaviors, one of which could be dogs that eat and lick dirt. Unfortunately, this in most cases is a bad sign and may hint at a problem that might not be always obvious to dog owners.

Eating dirt is a form of behavior referred to as pica, which means the ingestion of non-food material. This is the same term that can be used for dogs that eat poop. There could be a number of reasons why dogs engage this behavior.

Your Dog Has Health Problems

Dogs might start to eat dirt if they have underlying health issues. For example, dogs with health problems like anemia, gastrointestinal disease, and liver disease may engage in pica. In addition to dirt, they might start to consume other non-food material around the house.

Your Dog Has Nutritional Deficiencies

Dogs may also start to eat dirt if they are suffering from nutritional deficiencies. This would be obvious to dog owners if they know they aren’t feeding their dog a well-balanced meal.

Your Dog is Bored or Stressed

Sometimes, dogs will start displaying strange behaviors like eating dirt if they are stressed, bored, or anxious. Emotional issues could lead to destructive behavior. Dogs, particularly breeds known for having high energy, will seek out something to do if they aren’t given enough attention.

A few of the above causes should be obvious to dog owners and can be easily remedied through lifestyle and dietary changes. Health issues, on the other hand, aren’t so easy to diagnose. We would strongly encourage you to take the dog to the vet if the pup has been eating dirt consistently.

Disclaimer: The content on MyPetChild.com is for informational purpose only. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional veterinarian advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your veterinarian when in doubt.

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