Every dog handler knows that dog’s culinary tastes are very strange. Various, often disgusting things for us go into the dog’s mouth – moldy bread from the lawn, smelly remains of kebabs found under the bush … But to eat toilet paper? Let’s check where such a taste for pets comes from and whether it can be dangerous for them!
Why Do Dogs Eat Toilet Paper?
There are many reasons for biting, tearing, and chewing toilet paper. Some of them stem from the natural behavior of dogs, while others may indicate various ailments. Here are some of the most common reasons why pets may eat toilet paper.
Biting and chewing is a must for every dog. If it is not fulfilled with the help of teethers or toys, the pooch will look for another outlet for this instinct. For many dogs, tearing toilet paper is really satisfying – you can nibble it, chew it, wash it … And when it is nudged with a paw, a roll rolling on the floor is simply a great toy. Providing your pet with other chew toys and using energy in a more interesting way can make your pet lose interest in toilet paper.
Teeth-swapping puppies will take whatever they can reach into their mouths. Toilet paper can also fall victim to the little jaws! Teething causes unpleasant itching and sometimes even sore gums. No wonder that little dogs seek relief in every possible way. Fortunately, puppies will be happy to switch from a roll to a chewing gum teether. All you need to do is provide them with the right toys!
Dogs who eat too little food may desperately reach for a roll of toilet paper. The paper perfectly silences the strong suction in the stomach and brings almost immediate relief. Unfortunately, apart from a large dose of clogging cellulose, toilet paper does not contain any nutrients. A proper, balanced and tailored diet will help eliminate hunger and save paper. Enormous, insatiable hunger can also be a symptom of several serious diseases. If, despite proper feeding, your pooch is still craving and obsessed with food, it’s worth getting tested.
Dogs who experience stress often reach for something to chew on. Muffling a slipper, biting a sofa upholstery or chewing a roll of paper allows them to calm down. Such behavior may indicate separation anxiety, and also appear in dogs that experience severe stress on a daily basis, for example related to moving to a new home. Solving such problems can be difficult, especially if the caregiver is not aware of the malaise of his / her ward. Remember – shouting and punishing the dog will only make his problem worse …
Eating things that shouldn’t end up in a dog’s stomach is a disorder called „pica.” It can have many causes, from heartburn to parasites to neurological disorders. Puppies suffering from this condition are often not limited to toilet paper. They can also swallow socks, gloves, sticks, screws, stones … If you notice this behavior in your pet, take him to the vet immediately and check it carefully! It is possible that his stomach already has a large collection of various prey.
Can toilet paper harm my dog?
If a Labrador-sized dog swallows a single tissue, there’s no reason to panic. However, eating half a roll of paper for each pooch can end up tragically! Shredded, wet toilet paper clumps into a hard, indigestible mass, which in extreme cases can block the dog’s intestines. Strong gurgling in the abdomen, vomiting, stomach pain and reluctance to eat are signs that the pooch should be immediately taken to the vet.