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Dog eating grass

Why Do Dogs Eat Grass and Vomit? And What Should I Do?

Why Do Dogs Eat Grass and Vomit? And What Should I Do?

A typical activity that many pet owners may have noticed in their dogs is eating grass and occasionally vomiting afterwards. Despite that it can seem strange and concerning, it is actually a natural habit that has also been seen in wild canines. Understanding why your dog may eat grass and vomit occasionally is essential to deciding whether or not we should stop them from doing so.


Common reasons why dogs eat grass

Most commonly, eating grass may simply be a preference for some dogs. Some dogs may enjoy the taste of grass, especially grasses of certain varieties, growing in certain locations, or specific times of year. In such cases, it is usually not harmful to dogs. They typically graze or casually browse on grass and do not appear to be obsessive or overly driven to do so. However, excessive grass consumption can still lead to gastrointestinal upset. So, if your dog is vomiting frequently or showing signs of gastrointestinal distress, it is best to consult with your veterinarian to rule out any underlying health issues.


Some dogs may eat grass profusely in order to irritate their stomach and intentionally induce vomiting because they are feeling unwell, in order to get rid of any unwanted or harmful substances in their stomach. This is a natural, normal reflex that dogs can have when they feel sick and it is their attempt to alleviate their discomfort and feel better. In these instances, careful observation of the dog is warranted to ensure that this was a "one off" event. If the dog continues to vomit or appear otherwise unwell, consultation with your veterinarian if indicated.


Other less common reasons why dogs may excessively eat grass is because they are lacking certain nutrients in their diet, they may be searching for fibre, or they may be exhibiting a behaviour termed "Pica", in which dogs compulsively ingest non-food items as a result of behavioural, medical or nutritional abnormalities. Dogs require a complete and balanced diet to stay healthy and to thrive, so examining the food they are eating is a first step to determining the cause of their abnormal grass consumption.


Should I stop my dog from eating grass?

So, to answer the question whether we should stop our dogs from eating grass, the answer is: not necessarily. In many cases, it's fine to let the dog's body do its job and let them eat grass, as long as it doesn't become problematic for them. It is a natural behavior that can occur for various reasons. However, if you notice that your dog is eating grass excessively or compulsively, or frequently vomiting, it is best to consult with your veterinarian to ensure there is no underlying cause for their abnormal grass consumption.