Dogs make fantastic pets with their affectionate temperament and playful personalities. Not to mention, they even serve as service dogs, military or police dogs, and search and rescue dogs. Lately, there are even rumors of canines going into space with humans in the near future!
But, any dog parent will tell you that your dog feels the world around it with its sense of taste. Everything that your dog can lick will be licked, and whatever it wants to swallow, it will try to swallow. But what goes into your canine will also come out.
So, why is your dog pooping hair? Your dog is pooping hair because they are swallowing hair from somewhere. This behavior can stem from a number of reasons, including Pica, boredom, and attention-seeking. It’s likely not a serious issue, but try to keep any hairbrushes or discarded hair clumps out of your dog’s reach.
So, without wasting any of your precious time, let’s jump right into it. Why does your dog eat hair, is it dangerous, and how can you stop it?
Why Is My Dog Eating Hair?
Many dog guardians vouch that finding hair in their dog’s poop was one of the most disturbing things they have experienced as pet parents.
However, it is not uncommon to find strange things in your dog’s poop. They may be eating hair for a whole host of different reasons. And, that is the cause of you finding hair in their feces. Let’s look at some of the reasons why your dog may be swallowing hair.
Pica is an eating disorder that is commonly found in older dogs. It is technically the consumption of non-food substances. Now, Pica can be a result of psychological problems or an underlying medical condition in your dog. And, it can only be treated once the root cause of Pica has been discovered.
Dogs suffering from Pica may eat cloth, plastic, wood, paper, or even rocks. And, yes, dogs suffering from Pica may also eat hair. If your dog is suffering from Pica, then it is advisable to head straight to the vet, as eating random items can result in choking, impaction, and other health problems for your fur baby.
One of the most apparent signs of Pica is that you are likely to find a lot more things in your dog’s poop other than hair. So, it really shouldn’t be hard to figure out if your dog is showing symptoms of Pica.
2. Attention Seeking Behavior
Yes, your dog may swallow hair when it wants your attention if you have managed to ignore your dog’s pleading and loving eyes. And, even if you stopped paying attention to how forlorn your doggo looks, then your dog may revert to drastic measures to get you to take a moment from you.
You see, if you are spending long hours away from your furry friend and your dog is left on its own, then your pooch will invariably adopt behavior that could be both harmful to its health and bring an intense response from you.
3. Developmental Reasons
As mentioned earlier, dogs experience the world around them with their sense of taste more than using any other senses. Most puppies tend to swallow things that intrigue them. So, it is often standard to find hair in puppy poo. As hair strands have a unique texture, your puppy is likely to snuff up a couple of strands just to try and figure out what it is.
However, these developmental issues get resolved as your pup grows older and naturally learns what to eat and what not to swallow. Also, you can help your puppy along by providing it with a few chew toys.
It may sound hard to believe, but canines can get pretty creative when they are bored. You see, when dogs, particularly high-energy breeds like German Shepherds or Dalmations, get bored, they will come up with many destructive ways to occupy their time.
So, if your dog was having normal stools one day and suddenly started to poop hair the next, then you need to revise your daily schedule and create more opportunities for your pup to get their energy out.
5. Lacking In Minerals Or Vitamins
Many animals have the instinctual urge to eat specific things when they lack calcium, minerals, or vitamins in their bodies. Dogs are no different. If your dog has started to swallow vast amounts of hair strands, it could be that your pooch is suffering from a deficiency of certain minerals.
Under such circumstances, your best bet is to head to the vet for a consultation. If your doggo does have a deficiency, then your vet will have to run several tests to find out. And, then your dog’s vet can prescribe a few supplements that will hopefully remedy the hair swallowing urge in your furry friend.
How Can You Stop Your Pooch From Pooping Hair?
You have to understand that if your dog is pooping hair, then that is not necessarily bad news. Many pets that swallow hair tend to vomit the hairballs out like cats. But dogs don’t often vomit hairballs, as they don’t generally swallow that much hair. If you find enough hair in your dog’s poop to notice, then that means that your dog is consuming a large amount of hair.
Now, if you happen to find human hair in your dog’s poop, then you should thank your lucky stars that your dog pooped it out. You see, human hair can cause blockages in your canine’s digestive tract, which can lead to a whole series of health problems.
Blockages in the digestive tract of dogs can cause constipation, stomach pains, bloating, loss of appetite, and even prove fatal in severe cases. These blockages in the digestive tract cannot be taken care of without performing surgery on your pet.
Yet, if you want to get your dog off the habit of swallowing human hair, then you have to make sure that your dog has no access to human hair. You see, if your dogs keep biting on your hairbrush, then that’s where it’s getting hair to swallow. Therefore, you should keep your hairbrushes out of your dog’s reach.
And, if your dog simply swallows whatever hair it can find on the ground, then you need to make sure that you keep the floors of your house free of human hair, or at least of too much human hair.
Providing your dog with interactive chew toys will also help your pooch get over its hair swallowing obsession. And, last but not least, you need to spend quality time with your dog on walks around the park or the neighborhood. The more exercise your dog gets, the less likely it will find itself in trouble.
Dogs tend to develop behavioral and psychological issues when they don’t get enough attention or playtime from their owners. A proper diet, regular exercise, and a daily routine prevent many health issues and behavioral problems in canines.
Having a canine as a family member means that you will have lots of joy and laughter in your household. But, having a pet in your life also means being responsible for their well-being. Dogs require time and attention from their humans. They also need a healthy diet, regular workouts, and a proper routine to live long and happy lives.
Finding hair in your dog’s poop can come as a shock to first-time pet parents. But, once you get over the initial shock, you’ll have to understand that your dog requires your care to get over the current problem it is facing. So, a short visit to the vet and some extra attention will go a long way in keeping your furry friend’s tummy free of human hair.
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