Help my dog is eating poop!

Help my dog is eating poop

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Help my dog is eating poop!

You’re at work and you spent the whole day daydreaming about going back home and kicking back for a relaxing evening with your dog and cat and binging on some unhealthy food and TV series. You finally get home after getting stuck in traffic for the past one and a half hours. As you open the door your dog and cat rush to greet you. Everything is as it should be. You kneel down to savour the adoration that you were craving. You absolutely love it when your dog licks you … but then it hits you. Like a hammer hits a nail, the stench hits your nostrils and fires your brain to recoil from its source. You realize its coming from your dog’s mouth; the same mouth that was licking your ear and cheeks a few seconds ago. And then you realize … the dog had a go at the cat’s litter again!

Is it normal?

One cannot blame owners to be disgusted at this kind of behaviour. When they got the dog home they bargained for a cute, well behaved puppy not a scat fetishist that makes you thread on eggshells and contort in awkward positions as you try to avoid getting licked. Your supposedly best friend should have better oral hygiene and more savoury habits. However it is safe to say that this kind of behaviour, although undesirable, is pretty normal.

Why do dogs do it?

Dogs engage in this kind of behaviour because they are either not getting enough nutrients from their diet or because the faeces of other dogs or other animals, especially cats, has a lot of useful nutrients such as proteins and fats still present in it. This kind of behaviour usually first shows up early on in a dog’s life when the dog is still developing. This is because puppies have a great need for proteins and other nutrients. However, if not nipped at the bud, this behaviour might become normal and persists throughout the dog’s life. It is useful to schedule your dog for a veterinary check-up and rule out any underlying conditions that might be contributing to this behaviour.

Other reasons may include that the dog’s feeding area is not kept clean. Having faeces and their odours in close proximity to a dog’s food might make him associate the smell with feeding time and render it unable to distinguish between the two due to conditioning.

Dogs might also engage in this behaviour due to emotional issues. Dogs that are not properly socialized or suffer from anxiety have a greater chance of engaging in this kind of behaviour. Dogs that are housetrained using harsh measures sometimes end up eating their own faeces in order to hide any incriminating evidence and hopefully avoid being punished.

Tackling this situation usually needs a lot of patience and a lot of positive reinforcement to encourage the dog to behave properly. Getting angry at the dog and stressing the dog out will only make the situation worse as the dog will inevitably seek familiar, comforting behaviour such as eating its own stools.

So what can be done about it?

As mentioned above, the first step is to take your beloved pet to the vet in order to rule out any underlying conditions that might be contributing to the situation. The veterinarian will identify whether your dog is suffering from parasites, digestive problems or other conditions that might increase the dog’s appetite (such as diabetes, Cushing’s disease, etc.). If the dog is suffering from a condition, solving the problem might stop this behaviour. If the dog insists on its stool eating habits, after ruling out any medical conditions, one should start thinking of training methods to stop this undesirable behaviour.

Owners must make sure that the dog is being fed highly digestible, high quality food. This will ensure that the dog is getting all the necessary nutrients and is not resorting to this behaviour in order to compensate for some missing element in its diet. Dogs showing this behaviour are also usually given vitamin and enzyme supplements to aid their digestion.

It is also good to give a treat to your dog after your dog answers nature’s call. This is useful to break the dog’s habit by giving it a tasty alternative to eating its own poop. If this distraction is consistently sustained over a long enough period of time, the dog will hopefully forget its previous disgusting behaviour and replace it with this more pleasant one.

Picking your dog’s faeces right after your dog finishes its business and cleaning the dog’s environment as often as possible is also another way of reducing opportunities and help your dog get this behaviour out of its system. If the dog shares the house with a cat one must also put the cat litter out of the dog’s reach.

There are various products on the market that are meant to discourage dogs from eating their own or other dog’s faeces. These products are often bitter or unpleasant and if used consistently are quite effective at deterring this behaviour. These can be bought from regular pet supply stores.

So despair not. The resources are endless. You just need a little bit of patience and work until you can help your dog go through this gut wrenching phase.


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The following is needed to bring a puppy into Dubai:


  1. All dogs entering Dubai from a low-risk country at least 15 weeks old, and those entering from a high-risk country must be at least 27 weeks old.
  2. Microchip – All dogs entering and residing in Dubai must be equipped with either a 9 or 15 digit microchip.
  3. Import Permit – All dogs entering Dubai must be equipped with a Special Permit from the Ministry of Climate Change and Environment. Valid for 30 days.
  4. Vaccinations* – Depending on the country of origin, your pet might need a rabies shot on top of all the age appropriate vaccinations. Dubai specific vaccinations: Canine Distemper Virus, Canine Parvo Virus, Infectious Canine Hepatitis, Leptospirosis, Rabies.
  5. Rabies Titer Test * – All dogs entering Dubai must be tested for rabies no later than 14 days before the planned travel date. ( Only from specific
  6. Parasite check - All pets travelling to Dubai must receive preventive treatments against internal and external parasites in the 14 days before travel by an authorised and competent vet.
  7. Health Check – A Health Check by a veterinarian is mandatory in order to obtain permissions to enter Dubai.
  8. Pet Passport – This document verifies that the puppy is fully healthy and up-to-date on their vaccinations.


* The United Arab Emirates classifies all countries into two rabies categories:
  • Low-risk countries: Albania, Andorra, Australia, Austria, Bahamas, Bahrain, Barbados, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Falkland Island, Fiji, Finland, French Polynesia, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Jamaica, Japan, South Korea, Kuwait, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Maldives, Malta, Marshall Islands, Mauritius, Micronesia, Montenegro, New Caledonia, New Zealand, Palau, Portugal, San Marino, Seychelles, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Suriname, Sweden, Switzerland, The Netherlands, UK, and Vanuatu.
  • High-risk countries: All other countries are considered high-risk countries.
** Only for puppies from high-risk countries
Travel Requirements

The following is needed to bring a puppy into Abu Dhabi:


  1. All dogs entering Abu Dhabi from a low-risk country at least 15 weeks old, and those entering from a high-risk country must be at least 27 weeks old.
  2. Microchip – All dogs entering and residing in Abu Dhabi must be equipped with either a 9 or 15 digit microchip.
  3. Import Permit – All dogs entering Abu Dhabi must be equipped with a Special Permit from the Ministry of Climate Change and Environment. Valid for 30 days.
  4. Vaccinations* – Depending on the country of origin, your pet might need a rabies shot on top of all the age appropriate vaccinations. Abu Dhabi specific vaccinations: Canine Distemper Virus, Canine Parvo Virus, Infectious Canine Hepatitis, Leptospirosis, Rabies.
  5. Rabies Titer Test * – All dogs entering Abu Dhabi must be tested for rabies no later than 14 days before the planned travel date. ( Only from specific
  6. Parasite check - All pets travelling to Abu Dhabi must receive preventive treatments against internal and external parasites in the 14 days before travel by an authorised and competent vet.
  7. Health Check – A Health Check by a veterinarian is mandatory in order to obtain permissions to enter Abu Dhabi.
  8. Pet Passport – This document verifies that the puppy is fully healthy and up-to-date on their vaccinations.


* The United Arab Emirates classifies all countries into two rabies categories:
  • Low-risk countries: Albania, Andorra, Australia, Austria, Bahamas, Bahrain, Barbados, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Falkland Island, Fiji, Finland, French Polynesia, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Jamaica, Japan, South Korea, Kuwait, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Maldives, Malta, Marshall Islands, Mauritius, Micronesia, Montenegro, New Caledonia, New Zealand, Palau, Portugal, San Marino, Seychelles, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Suriname, Sweden, Switzerland, The Netherlands, UK, and Vanuatu.
  • High-risk countries: All other countries are considered high-risk countries.
** Only for puppies from high-risk countries
Travel Requirements

The following is needed to bring a puppy into Hong Kong:


  1. All dogs entering Hong Kong must be at least 3 months old.
  2. Microchip – All dogs entering and residing in Hong Kong must be equipped with either a 9 or 15-digit microchip.
  3. Import Permit – All dogs entering Hong Kong must be equipped with a Special Permit from the Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department. Valid for up to 6 months.
  4. Vaccinations* – Depending on the country of origin, your pet might need a rabies shot on top of all the age appropriate vaccinations. Hong Kong specific vaccinations: Canine distemper, infectious canine hepatitis, canine parvovirus and rabies.
  5. Health Check – A Health Check by a veterinarian is mandatory in order to obtain permissions to enter Hong Kong.
  6. Pet Passport – This document verifies that the puppy is fully healthy and up-to-date on their vaccinations.
  7. Captain’s Affidavit – Document to be provided by the airline personnel confirming that your dog has not left its crate or interacted with other pets at any point during the journey.


* Hong Kong classifies countries into 3 groups. Vaccinations against rabies are only required from Groups 2 & 3.
  • Group 1: Rabies-free countries (at least 6 months of residency) Australia, Fiji, Hawaii, Ireland, Japan, New Zealand, United Kingdom, Bailiwick of Jersey.
  • Group 2: Rabies-controlled (at least 4 months of residency) Austria, Bahrain, Bermuda, Canada, Cyprus, Finland, Germany, Guam, Italy, Luxembourg, Malta, Norway, Papua New Guinea, Seychelles, Solomon Islands, Spain, Switzerland, Taiwan, Vanuatu, Bahamas, Belgium, Brunei, Cayman Island, Denmark, France, Gibraltar, Iceland, Jamaica, Maldives, Mauritius, New Caledonia, Portugal, Singapore, South Africa, Sweden, The Netherlands, USA (Continental), Virgin Islands.
  • Group 3: All other countries.
** Only for puppies from high-risk countries
Travel Requirements

The following is needed to bring a puppy into Switzerland:


  1. All pets entering Switzerland must be equipped with a 15-digit microchip that is compliant with ISO 11784/11785.
  2. Dogs must be vaccinated against distemper.
  3. Rabies vaccinations are mandatory. Dogs must receive their first rabies vaccine at least 21 days before entering the country.*
  4. The state veterinarian of the origin country must equip the dog with a valid Health Certificate.
  5. Import Permit – all dogs entering from a 3rd level rabies country must carry an import permit issued at least three weeks in advance. Entry points through Basel, Geneva, Zurich.
  6. Different regulations depending on whether it is a commercial purchase or individual and where the dog is coming from.


* Specifications differ for booster shots. ** Switzerland categorises countries by level of risk of rabies in three levels.
  • Level 1: All EU Member States and Andorra, Switzerland, Faeroe Islands, Gibraltar, Greenland, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Monaco, Northern Ireland, Norway, San Marino, Vatican City State.
  • Level 2 (Low Risk of Rabies): Ascension Island, United Arab Emirates, Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Australia, Aruba, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Barbados, Bahrain, Bermuda,Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba, Belarus, Canada, Chile, Curaçao, Fiji, Falkland Islands, Great Britain (including Crown dependencies), Hong Kong, Jamaica, Japan, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Cayman Islands, Saint Lucia, North Macedonia, Montserrat, Mauritius, Mexico, Malaysia, New Caledonia, New Zealand, French Polynesia, Saint Pierre and Miquelon, Russia, Singapore, Saint Helena, Sint Marteen, Trinidad and Tobago, Taiwan, United States of America, American Samoa, Guam, Northern Mariana Islands, Puerto Rico, Virgin Islands, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, British Virgin Islands, Vanuatu, Wallis and Futuna.
  • Level 3: All other countries are considered as having a high risk of rabies.
Travel Requirements