Most of us have been out on a walk, or thought their dog is much too happy in the garden on their own, only to find them busy eating the lawn! But why do they do it?
Some dogs enjoy eating grass simply because it tastes nice, particularly in warmer months; in spring and summer. Sometimes a dog may even be eating grass because something even tastier has been dropped or trodden into it, like a sweet or a salty bag of crisps.
Many dog owners worry their dog is eating grass because they have a bad tummy and want to get rid of something they’ve eaten, or that they’re lacking in vital nutrients, but studies have shown that there’s no evidence to support those fears.
Chris Harris, our Director, says:
"We have customers come to us all the time asking about their dogs eating grass and, in most cases, it can be very normal behaviour. Both my dogs regularly have a munch without concern. When advising them, we ensure the behaviour doesn't become excessive and they aren't eating plants that could potentially be toxic. It is also a good idea to ensure they are wormed regularly and treated for lung worm. A little bit of fresh grass can be a healthy addition to their diet should they choose, but if you have any concerns then always check with your vet."
So as long as the habit doesn’t become excessive, we don’t think there’s any reason to worry, but do make sure your dog isn’t doing it out of boredom. Try distracting them with a ball, or by calling them away; or if you’re in your own garden maybe they need somewhere larger to roam, so a good walk may help take their mind off chewing the cud.
Puppies will often eat grass and weeds as part of their young curiosity; they’re investigating new sights and smells. It’s best to discourage them from eating everything they see, as this can lead to destructive behaviour indoors by chewing on furniture too.
If you think anything harmful may have been on the grass they’ve eaten don’t hesitate to call your vet for advice, or if your dog is showing signs of an acute illness or excessive vomiting you may wish to seek advice in person.