Gracie is now 13 years old!

For nine years she's eaten REAL, HOMEMADE FOOD, NOT commercial dog food. This blog shows how easy it is to be a DOGGIE CHEF and how healthy a home-fed dog can be.

February 9, 2010

Rabbit Poop --- A Doggie Delicacy?

Sorry about this gross post and photo but I think it should be addressed on this blog.
No, I don't feed Gracie rabbit poop, but she loves to eat it when she finds it in our yard. I know ---YUCK!

She's been doing this for several years, even though I've tried to discourage it. So far, thankfully, she hasn't picked up any parasites or diseases. I've even had our vet do stool sample tests just to make sure Gracie didn't ingest any parasites. None were ever detected. Still, I'd prefer she didn't eat rabbit poop! 

This year I'm getting tougher. I'm attempting to consistently scold Gracie when I catch her eating rabbit poop, and warmly praise her when I order her not to eat it and she obeys. She responds well to training and won't usually eat the poop when I'm nearby. Yet if I step inside to get something while she's outside I think it's hard for her to resist sneaking a few bites. At least one rabbit has been visiting our property regularly and dropping little beads of poop all over. It's impossible to clean them up every day. We've even seen the rabbit outside at dawn and twilight. Gracie always makes a mad dash for him (or her) but the rabbit bounds away and scoots under our fence every time.

According to Wikipedia, a rabbit leaves behind "night feces," called, "cecotropes," and it's actually high in minerals, vitamins and proteins that are necessary to the rabbit's health. The rabbit will re-ingest the cecotropes --  yes, eat it after pooping it out --- in order to extract all the nutrients! That sounds kind of revolting but maybe that's why dogs want to eat rabbit poop? To get the vitamins and nutrients they contain? Or maybe the nutritional benefits of rabbit poop are for rabbits only and dogs just like the taste?

I'll keep doing my best to discourage Gracie from eating this "delicacy" she finds so irresistible. I feed Gracie gourmet doggie meals every day. I can't understand why she likes eating rabbit poop!

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