Is this normal for Britts??

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Mike Alter
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Is this normal for Britts??

Post by Mike Alter »

I recently adopted Jack, my first Brittany and have totally fallen for him and the breed. I have had him for only a few days and have been watching him very closely to learn as much about him as I can. He is said to be between 3 and 4 years old and weighs around 40 lbs. I have noticed that when we go out to the potty he will poop and then turn right around and start licking at the pile. I call him away and he seems to lose interest in it. Ihave been around dogs most of my life and have never owned one that does this. Is this normal or is there something I need to do to stop this? I was told that while in foster care he was fed once a day, about 3 cups. Since he has been home he will eat his three cups and then try and eat the other pups food as well. Does he need more food? I am really concerned!!!


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Barb Wright
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Post by Barb Wright »

This may be a case of the stool containing undigested material which still smells like food. Stool eating has many causes....this is just one. I would suggest dividing his food into two meals a day, 1 1/2 cup a.m. and the balance in the p.m. Three cups of food at one time is a burden on the digestive system of some dogs, the body can only assimilate so much at one time and the rest just moves on down the toxic waste chute :roll: Making the meals smaller so they digest better may stop the behavior....however, as I said there are many reasons for stool eating, but the above would be a place to start.

We have had quite a few discussions on poop eating with lots of ideas of the "why" and the "what to do" 8) Just use the search function and type in "poop", quite a few discussions will come up. Plus there are many web sites that also have info on this.

In the meantime, I would do what you are doing, just keep an eye on him and don't let him do it, good chance for some "drop-it-leave-it" training :wink:
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Catharina
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Post by Catharina »

I don't think that the behavior you are seeing is breed-specific (other than that britts are affectionately called "chow-hounds", "hoggie-doggies", or "poopy-mouths" by some of us :wink: ).

We've had several discussions on stool-eating (not specifically stool-licking, though) in the past:
viewtopic.php?t=1790
viewtopic.php?t=1372
viewtopic.php?t=566

As you will see when going through these, there are a number of different theories on this issue, some of which relate to potential nutritional deficiencies. If it were me, I wouldn't worry about those unless you see other symptoms (rough, dull fur; excessive shedding; lethargy).

Kibo (my britt-mix) definitely does what you describe on occasion, and I've never thought anything of it, other than that doggie-"tastes" tend to be different than mine.... :lol: .

As for the amount of food you are giving him, three cups sounds about right (definitely not too little) for his size to me. If it were me, I would split it into two meals -- gives him something to look forward to twice a day. If his weight is good and that's what he was fed in his foster home, I would stick with it for awhile and see if he maintains a healthy weigth. If his ribs start poking out too much, you can always add a quarter cup and see if that does it (or take about that much away if he is starting to look chunky). Also, if you are using food for training, you might want to take at least part of that out of his "kibble rations" also.

And finally, if he acts deprived, adding some cooked veggies or even just water to his meal is a great way to fill him up without adding many extra calories.

Good for you that you get to keep a close eye on him -- it takes a while to get comfortable with what's "normal" for a new dog; I know I was constantly worrying about everything Kibo did and didn't do when I first got him.
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Dave
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Post by Dave »

I own the King of Poop eaters , he makes me crazy :? . I have just about resorted to using an ecollar on him and zap him when I command "leave it" That command is a good part of Bird training anyway . When they grab something in their mouth you don't want , such as your neighbors cat :roll: :lol: Sorry bad example . Tweety birds are a better example . You should never allow them to kill and pack around a tweety , or eat it either . I totally agree about twice a day feeding , and never free feed a Brittany , or you might end up with a dog like my Molly who weighed 94 lbs. :o . She now weighs 46 and I'm a proud DAD :!: She is bigger than my breed standard male Levi who barely weighs 40 and I have a hard time keeping him there , he is super active :lol: :P Dave
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Post by Karen_P »

Dave wrote:I own the King of Poop eaters
If you own the King....I own the Queen! Tessa is a piggy!

If you can, please post pics of your new boy. 3 cups of food is an extraordinary amount for a Brittany. My WAAAYYY oversized and very active 6 yr old only gets 2 cups of food a day. My average sized Britts get between 1.5 - 1.75 cups a day.

Most Brittanys are a bottomless pit so I wouldn't worry about him trying to eat out of the other dog's bowl. I would, however, supervise, and make it very clear to him that stealing will not be tolerated.
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Post by Lisa »

:lol: If Levi is the king, then I guess that makes Buster the prince of poop-eaters! Buster is a total chow hound.

Buster weighs about 40 lbs, and maintains his weight on 2 cups of food a day. He always acts like he's starving....if I let him, he'd stick his head in the dog food bag and try to eat all 35 lbs of it!
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emason
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Post by emason »

We had the same problem with a foster we had in. We eventually ended up keeping Oakes. We have had him for almost 2years now. As soon as he "went " he would swing around and try to eat it before we got to him. He would also follow Casey our other britt and try to get his as well. He would also try and grab any other dog's he could find on a walk. We put him on a very good high end quality food. We also taught him the "leave it" command. There has been no sign of poop eating for well over a year now,. I believe it took about 4-6 months for him to stop completely. Now he will just sniff it and walk away.

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Post by swillow66 »

I thought Riley was finally over his poop eating habit, but guess who came in last night with stinky breath - gross! :x :roll: :shock: He's on a diet and thinks he is starving (actually he is eating the same amount - just getting more exercise). My sheltie was a poop eater but Madison (Riley's littermate) has never done it.

Breaking up the meals to 2x a day is a lot easier on their systems and highly advisable for some large breeds that are prone to bloat.
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HOPE
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Post by HOPE »

Hope also does that and I can't break her from doing it. I tried the "Leave it" command. And it's like she won't hear me. She does have selective hearing. She doesn't do it all the time; she does this when I am not watching. I take treats with me, so when ever she goes potty I give her a small treat (I guess for not eating it :lol: ) and to give me enough time to pick it up. Spotsie has never done that. :roll: I usually pick it immediately, don't want them eating it or stepping on it.
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adele
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Post by adele »

Well, since Tessa is taking the title Queen Poop Eater, Lola will have to settle for Champion Poop Eater. I follow her around the yard with a trowel in my hand and at this time of year a flashlight on my head. I can always tell when I've missed a bit because poop gives Lola gas.

She listens to "leave it" IF I say it before the poop is in her mouth. She will "drop it" (or part of it) IF I say it before its swallowed. Its tough because she's faster than I am. And I think she knows the command is comming so she'd better be quick.

I don't think its breed specific. Yesterday I just met a friends Aussie Shepard and just after she'd kissed me ON THE LIPS he said "she's a poop eater".
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Post by Natalie »

Well, Trip was a poop-eater for a while, then discovered the delicious taste of fescue and switched. :D "Leave-it" is very useful for poop and lots of other things, so I'd work on that - as others have suggested. Feeding twice a and instead of once would probably be a good thing, too. As for how much - I have one Brit on food that requires one and a half cups per day (total) and another on a different food that requires two and a half cups per day. How much you feed depends on the food and the weight the dog is at (and if you want him to gain, lose or maintain weight). I watch the dogs figures and feed a little less/more depending on what their waistline looks like.

Good luck w/ the poop-eating. I know its gross. Stinky breath. Maybe Jack will soon find something that he likes better. :D He sure is good lookin'!

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Post by HOPE »

adele wrote:Yesterday I just met a friends Aussie Shepard and just after she'd kissed me ON THE LIPS he said "she's a poop eater".
:lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

I almost fell off my chair :lol: :lol: Sometimes it's better not to know where their mouths been at :lol: :lol:
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swillow66
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Post by swillow66 »

Sometimes it's better not to know where their mouths been at
. . . yeah, especially since my in-laws Aussies drink water from the toilet and are called "potty mouths" :? double-yuck! :shock:
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ChrstnaLA
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Post by ChrstnaLA »

It's not just a Britt thing, my Vizsla does it too. When we first got Riley from ABR, Gunnar was on a prescription low-residue diet. For whatever reason, both he and Riley would eat Gunnar's poop. Not Riley's poop, only Gunnar's. Once Gunnar was well enough to go on regular food, it seemed to stop. Every now and then I catch them, but it's not nearly as bad as it used to be. When we used to go out to clean up the run in the evening, we would never find Gunnar piles. Basically, we just did what everyone here has suggested, good training and just keep your eye on him.
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Post by Canned Ice »

I was reading this post and thinking, "Wow, I'm glad Buckley doesn't eat poop." Guess who proved me wrong this morning? We were walking and he gobbled up a fresh pile of some other dog's poop. Ewww. Really, I wish people would pick up after their dogs.
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