Pica in dogs is an indicator of either a medical or a behavioral issue with a dog, and these are further explained below:
There are several medical reasons why a dog may take to eating dirt, and these include:
Doggies can tell when they aren’t getting enough nutrients from their meals, and a pooch may eat dirt from potted plants, in a bid to make up for the nutrients that are lacking in its diet.
Pica caused by a nutritional deficiency, is mostly observed in dogs that are fed homemade meals or poor-quality kibble.
Anemia, which is a deficiency of healthy red blood cells, may be another reason a dog is eating potting soil.
Anemia in dogs is characterized by a reduction in the absorption of iron and vitamin B into the doggie’s blood stream. And a pooch may take to eating soil from pots to compensate for the lack of these key vitamins and nutrients.
Anemia in dogs is typically caused by ulcers, parasitic infestations or severe haemorrhaging. And along with a sudden liking for dirt, a pooch suffering Anemia will also suffer a loss of appetite and be lethargic.
Pica in dogs may be a sign of a stomach upset or gastrointestinal disorder. And a dog suffering from any of the aforementioned conditions may eat dirt in an attempt to calm its insides.
Apart from medical issues and nutritional deficiencies, your dog’s sudden liking for dirt may be behavioural and caused by one or more of the factors listed below:
Your Fido may be eating and licking dirt simply because it’s bored and has nothing else to do – This behavior is typically observed in dogs that spend a lot of time outside, doing nothing.
Dogs react to stress in a variety of ways, and of these reactions, is a tendency to start eating dirt all of a sudden.
There are several factors that may induce stress in a pooch; These factors include major or minor changes in the pooch’s life such as, moving to a new environment, introduction of a new pet or family member and fear of objects or humans, among others.
Dogs are naturally very curious and tend to get their noses into a lot of things; Hence, your dog eating things they shouldn’t may be because it finds the smell and taste of such substances appealing, or just to satisfy its curiosity.