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Why Does My Dog Eat Trash?

Dogs are simply a joy to have around and make the most loyal friends that one could ask for. But, they can also complicate your life by going through your trash and scattering the trash all over the floor. Coming home to such a mess is one of the most annoying things your dog could put you through, and yet pets do it all the time.

While you might be tempted to let it slide and allow your dog to continue going through your trash, that won’t do you or your dog any favors. Your pooch will continue making a mess and putting its health in danger because eating garbage places your dog at risk of developing serious gut and stomach problems.

In fact, a large number of pets die each year from eating contaminated items from the trash, from discarded chocolate to rodenticides, metals, and sugarless gum. All of these items can be found in an average home’s dumpster and are highly toxic to dogs.

Is Trash Eating A Sign Of A More Serious Condition?
Is your pet pooch going through your trash more frequently than usual? This may be a sign of a more serious medical or behavioral problem. It might be a good idea to take your dog to the vet so it can run some tests and see what the underlying problem is. For instance, dogs tend to exhibit trash-diving behavior when their owners are absent and will leave the trash alone when their owners are around. So, it stands to reason that their aggressive behavior toward the trash can might be a symptom of a form of separation anxiety. On the other hand, you have dogs that take the trash out of the garbage can just to destroy it or chew it aggressively. For them, trash-diving is an enjoyable activity where they get to discover what’s new in the trash can.

But, consuming trash can also be a sign of something more sinister. There are several medical conditions that can cause an upset stomach or increase a dog’s appetite to the point that it starts going through your trash instead of waiting for the next meal time. If your dog is suffering from a condition like gastrointestinal upset, it may scrounge around your trash can for something to appease its upset stomach until dinner time. However, this can cause several health problems due to the ingestion of toxins from the moldy food present in the trash. If your dog continues to ingest these harmful items, you should take it to the vet for a test that’ll help to determine the root cause.

What Should You Do?
The good news is that there are a few methods that you can use to stop your dog from trash-diving. Getting a dog-proof trash can is a great way to solve this problem because these types of trash cans are designed in a way that makes it virtually impossible for dogs to open them. Also, you should avoid trash cans with motion-sensor activated lids or pedals, because any smart dog can figure out how to open them.

For the best results, stick with dog-proof trash cans like the ones that have a locking lid. This type of trash can can’t be opened by your dog no matter how many times it tries, and it’s the best way to guarantee that it won’t go through your garbage when you’re not watching.

Alternatively, you could place your trash can in your pantry, if there’s enough space for it, and make sure your pantry door is always closed. You can also move your trash can from the kitchen to an outdoor bin that’s enclosed so your dog can’t reach it.

The most important thing is to keep your dog away from your trash can by any means necessary.

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