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So Why ‘Do’ Dogs Eat Grass?

Molly eating grass
Pic by Sprint Sioux Falls

As many of you know, Monday was a GREAT night for a slow walk with the dog.  I decided to head out just before dinner.  We started with a trip through Harmondon Park which is Sioux Falls premiere baseball and softball facility. (Sorry Sherman Park Fans, I’m an east-sider)

We started our walk and a bit of the taller grass started calling out to our black lab, Molly. She love’s grass this time of year.

I put it up on our Facebook last week and asked what you thought.  Some of your thought, ‘it’s going to rain,’ which it did and others thought it was because maybe she had a ‘tummy ache.’

I did a little research and checked with PetMD and found some pretty interesting things out. Like:

Dogs, unlike their catty counterparts, are not carnivores. But they’re not like your garden-variety omnivores, either. For tens of thousands of years, these opportunistic scavengers have devoured anything and everything, as long as it fulfilled their basic dietary requirements.

The modern dog, partly because of evolution and domestication, is no longer like its ancestors, which frequently ate their prey entirely, including the stomach contents of plant-eating animals. Instead, dogs today seek out plants as an alternative food source. Most commonly the plant is grass — since that is what is closest at hand — but wild canines are known to eat fruits, berries, and other vegetable matter, too.

Interesting.  If you were held to a daily diet of dog food, even though it has ‘everything your dog body needs,’ it might get boring after a while.  So getting out for a little salad bar action might be something to ‘crave.’

As for the ‘getting sick,’ after your dog eats grass:

A dog will seek out a natural remedy for a gassy or upset stomach, and grass, it seems, may do the trick. When ingested, the grass blade tickles the throat and stomach lining; this sensation, in turn, may cause the dog to vomit, especially if the grass is gulped down rather than chewed.

Although dogs don’t typically graze on large amounts of grass like a cow, they may nibble on grass, chew on it for a while, and not throw up (an unwell dog will tend to gulp the grass down in big bites and then throw up). This may be because they find the texture of the grass palatable, or just because they need to add a little roughage to their diet.

I feel a little better.  PetMD did go on to say, if your dog is trying to eat houseplants (which many ARE bad for them) try putting a little ‘green’ or vegetable matter in with their nuggets.

I like cats, but there is nothing like the companionship and personality of a dog.  They can put everyone in the house in a better mood.  Oh, and it’s nice to know that if you go for a walk with Fido tonight, and he wants a little grass, a little bit isn’t going to hurt him.

How about you?  Do you have a pet?  Tell us a little bit about it below in the comments section or heck, even send a picture.  Maybe we’ll feature you and him or her on KIKN.com.

Happy Dog Walking!

 

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