Wednesday, 23 November 2011

WHY YOUR DOG EATS GRASS


IF YOU SEE YOUR DOG EATING GRASS...

Don't be alarmed if you see your dog eating grass. Grass isn't bad for canines and the fact that they are eating grass is not an indication that they are ill. 

Sometimes I think I am living with a herd of cattle, instead of a pack of dogs! Here's the proof!

Tasha, Abby, Jordie, Stevie and Zoey on a grass coffee break

SO, WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF EATING GRASS?

Dogs do like to have greens in their diet…grass contains nutrients that are beneficial to a dogs health. If you do not provide fresh greens in you dogs daily diet he will likely go looking for greens on his own. Even though my dogs get a diet rich in fresh, nutrient rich soluble fibers (from fresh fruit and veggies) they still love to chew fresh grass on a daily basis in the summer and the dried brown grasses in the fall and winter. 

Robbie's found his own stash of sweet grass
There is also an enzyme in grass that is beneficial to a dog's digestive system. Every so often dogs eat grass to help them regurgitate something that is irritating their digestive tract or just not sitting well in their stomach.


Sometimes you will see your dog bring up yellow foamy bile. This does not mean that they are sick - it is normal. However if your dog continues to throw up bile multiple times (more than a few times) over the span of a day or several days you should get your dog to a Veterinarian.

Fibre and amino acids present in grass help to stimulate the digestive system and aid blood flow. 

Just as antioxidants are beneficial to humans - so to for dogs. Grass is a source of vitamin E, which is an antioxidant. Antioxidants help to prevent heart disease, strokes and cancer, they also aid the health of the immune system. 

Grass also contains niacin and other B group vitamins, which aid the metabolism, stimulate the nervous system, and help maintain healthy fur and skin. 


...and don't forget canines love to chew on stuff! Most of the time my dogs just eat grass because they enjoy it. 

Sarah's found a good patch of grass too!
And, by the way - size does not matter - grass is as popular with my really small dogs, like Carmen my Chihuahua and Jacob my 4 pound Pomeranian as it is for the big guys!

When I am outside doing chores, the dogs will often munch grass - especially the longer blades - so kind of them to remind me that I need to get the grass trimmer out.

When the dogs are off-leash on the trails they have favorite patches of long grasses that they all partake of. In the winter - the tall dry meadow grasses are a favorite.

Given the opportunity, my dogs also love to munch on my bunnies' timothy and dry sweet grasses.

When it comes to your dog eating grass, the only thing to be concerned about is to make sure your canine never eats grass that has been treated with herbicides and pesticides.


Additional Assistance

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Article and graphics by Karen Rosenfeld 

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Important Note

1.0 Use of Foods, Herbs, Alternative Medicines:

Safe use of items and protocols in the article above, is your sole responsibility.

Foods, herbs and alternative medicines have health issue, condition and conventional drug interactions. Safe use of all substances and protocol are your responsibility.

Before you use any substance or protocol do your research. Check for cautions, contradictions, interactions and side effects. Do not use substances or protocols not suitable to your animal's individual circumstances.

If your animal has an underlying condition substances and protocols may conflict.

2.0 Definition of Holistic…

Food, herbs, alternative medicines are NOT ‘holistic’ they are a substance and MAY, or may NOT be ‘NATURAL’.

If you use a ‘natural’ substance (ie. an herb) you are using a natural substance, not a holistic substance.

Holistic is not defined by use of one or several substances. Holistic is an approach.

Definition of “holistic” from the Cambridge Advanced Learner's Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press

Adjective

"relating to the whole of something or to the total system instead of just to its parts"

"Holistic medicine attempts to treat the whole person, including mind and body, not just the injury or disease."

Holistic is a way of approaching life, and within that health, and well-being.

3.0 Expectation a natural substance remedies a health or behavioral situation.

A natural substance used to treat symptoms. But, if factors causing the underlying issue remain you do not have a remedy.

Remedy requires a comprehensive approach. It is necessary to identify root cause. Remove items that trigger, cause or otherwise contribute to issues. Holistic approach includes design, implementation to treat, remedy and maintain long-term health.

4.0 Leave a Comment

I review all comments and publish those deemed appropriate for this site.

I answer questions deemed appropriate when I have time to do so.

Wishing your dog and cat the best of health!

Karen Rosenfeld
Ottawa Valley Dog Whisperer
Holistic Behaviorist - Dogs
Holistic Diet Nutrition Wellness Adviser – Dogs and Cats

karen@ottawavalleydogwhisperer.ca

1-613-622-1139
1-613-293-3707

00-1-613-622-1139
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