Table of Contents
Why Do Dogs Eat Rocks?
Rock eating can be the result of a problem.
pica is an eating disorder that can be caused by a deficiency in a dog’s diet. Other dogs may have undetected medical disorders. Puppies bite, chew, or swallow rocks in order to get relief from teething pain.
Dogs chew on rocks to draw your attention. They could be upset or anxious.
“They’re going to explore their world and they’re like human babies,” said Mindy Tusko, dog trainer and owner of Pawsitive Results Training.
Some dogs and puppies are attracted to rocks out of curiosity, as tasting different objects allows them to better understand their environment The attraction may be due to the smell, as rocks may have been marked by other animals or have food remnants on them.
It’s possible that your dog is tired of the same routine, toys, and activities that they are involved in, even if you think they should be enough.
“Boredom is a big problem and one of the reasons that we find dogs eating rocks is because they have nothing else to do.”
Since dogs are highly intelligent and need both mental and physical stimulation, they need to be constantly challenged. Dogs get bored with their chew toys the same way children get bored with toys.
How Can I Get My Dog to Stop Eating Rocks?
The first step in stopping this dangerous behavior is basic obedience training. Teaching dogs and puppies two basic commands, ” leave it” and “drop it”, is the foundation of successfully destroying this habit.
Tusko said that the commands are so beneficial. It could save the dogs’ lives.
The drop it command is used to teach dogs how to release rocks from their mouths. A habit of not eating rocks in the first place is reinforced by the “leave it” command.
From the time you get the puppy, proper training needs to start.
If you see your dog munching away, tell them to drop it in a calm but firm tone. If you see them interested in getting their snouts near rocks, just leave it. It could prompt them to swallow the rock if you startle them. Then give them a toy or treat as a reward. Praise can be used to reward dogs instead of treats. Pets tell your pet that they made the right choice.
A high reward for a dog is love and affection.
Dogs will have an easier time ignoring or dropping rocks when they understand these commands. It will make it easier for you to avoid serious health problems.
Rock-eating may be a plea for attention, so build in some bonding time with a shared activity. Dog sports like Herding can give dogs positive outlets for their energy as they need both mental and physical stimulation. Training together for a program like Canine Good Citizen (CGC) will help them master basic obedience lessons and give them more of the attention from you that they crave. You can get started in dog sports or training classes by contacting your local club.
Dogs chew rocks out of boredom or to draw your attention, if they are spending time with you outdoors. They can fight off boredom if they have a chew toy outside. Dogs with a tendency to eat rocks in the backyard or dog park need to be supervised at all times.
What to Do if your Dog Eats Rocks
Make an appointment with your doctor if you have a rock-chewer at home. If your dog has an underlying health condition, your vet can perform a physical examination. If the behavior is related to a health condition, your vet can give you advice.
Once medical causes are ruled out, it is time to focus on behavioral issues. Try any of the tips and get in touch with a dog trainer. If it is pica, your dog will have to be trained by professional behaviorists.
STEP ONE: Visit your veterinarian promptly.
It is important to have your vet take a look at the situation and make sure your dog is okay. This can lead to terrible unpleasantness and potentially fatal consequences if left unattended.
Your vet can try to determine if any medical conditions are causing the problem after you ensure that she is not full of rocks and in danger. A detailed history, including your dog’s diet and general behavior, will be taken by your vet.
Follow your vet’s directions to the letter. You can come back here and take up where you left off after doing so.
In a best-case scenario, your dog will not have any rocks in her belly and she will be physically healthy. This will allow you to move on to step two.
STEP TWO: Remove as many rocks (or other inedible but tempting) items as possible from your dog’s turf.
No matter what the cause of the behavior is, it makes sense to eliminate the possibility of your dog eating any more if you have already solved the medical problem.
If your dog has a kennel area, you will want to clean it as well as any other areas she frequents. If you want to keep your dog out of the gardens and patio-type areas, you need to remove the rocks from these places.
The problem should be removed if the rocks are removed. It is time for step three.