How To Stop A Dog From Eating Cat Poop – 7 Tips On Keeping Your Dog Away From Cat Poop
Owning a dog and a cat at home can be one of the greatest things in the world for animal lovers. Especially if these two ‘mortal enemies’ managed to live together in perfect harmony. I, for one, have a cat and a dog at home and those two are the best of friends. However, one problem that owners of both canine and feline will encounter would probably revolve around good old Fido and his curiously hungry appetite. And I'm wondering how to stop a dog from eating cat poop.
In this article, we will be discussing how to avoid this potential health risk from ruining your pet’s day. We will be going over some guidelines on how to prevent this from happening as well as some recommendations for a litter box that keep dogs away. Now, buckle in and let’s find a way to solve this little pet conundrum.
What’s the Reason Why Dogs Like Eating Poop?
For those who are not aware, there is actually a term for this kind of behavior and it’s called coprophagia. This behavior can be caused by a variety of reasons but for dogs, it is for the simple reason of they think it tastes good. Why would they think this though?
Well, based on your cat’s diet – there is a chance that they would not be able to digest their food properly. This can cause their stool to contain some half-digested food. Feeds designed for cats also contain higher protein which can their stool to smell enticing for our canine friend.
Another probable cause for this type of behavior in dogs would stem from mother dogs. In order to clean up after her puppies, mother dogs tend to eat the stool of her young for up to 9-months. Some puppies will pick-up this habit through their adulthood so it is best to stop this behavior by nipping it at the bud.
How To Stop A Dog From Eating Cat Poop
There are several ways you can stop your dog from going after your cat’s litterbox. Here are a few simple methods that you can incorporate right this moment.
1. Placing the Litterbox on an Elevated Platform
One of the simplest methods would be to just place the litterbox in a place that your dog cannot reach. Ideally, you should place the litterbox on a raised platform with ample space and an easy to clean surface. This higher placement also means you won’t need to hunch and bend down to clean the litterbox.
2. Placing a Fence/Barrier
You can use a baby gate for this method or make a fence yourself if you are handy with hardware tools. It is important to ensure that the barrier is sturdy and will offer an easily accessible entrance for your cat. If they can’t manage to get into the barrier themselves then you might be in for a messy surprise.
3. Clean it Regularly
Cleanliness will always be the best method when it comes to this issue. Be diligent and clean up the litterbox as soon as possible after your cat is done with their business. This is the most recommended method if you are always at home. If you will be away for most of the day then an elevated platform or a barrier is the next best option.
4. Making Slight Changes to Your Cat’s Diet
As we have stated earlier, one of the main reasons your dogs enjoy snacking on your cat’s stool is that it smells enticing to them. You can make some simple and safe tweaks to your cat’s diet to make their stool less appetizing for dogs.
For example, try mixing in a spoonful of vegetable oil into your cat’s meal. This should make their stool softer. You can also try adding mashed pumpkin as it can significantly affect the consistency of their feces. Cat’s love pumpkin but dogs don’t really enjoy the taste. A win-win situation.
5. Keep your Dog Pre-Occupied
Boredom can also lead your dog to go sniffing around your cat’s toilet. By giving them something else to chew on you can prevent your dog from roaming around the house and bumping into some bad alternatives. You can also buy puzzle chew toys with delicious treats inside to keep their attention for quite some time.
6. Proper Potty Training Goes a Long Way
It’s never late to teach your dog something new, all it needs is dedication and discipline on your part. If your dog not only enjoys snacking on your cat’s stool but also theirs, you should start training them properly asap.
A good way to remove this bad behavior is with positive reinforcements. Start by calling them once they are done with their business and giving them a treat. For best results, give them a special treat that they only get during this specific training. It will probably take a week or two but they’ll soon get the hang of this new habit and completely ignore stools from here on out.
7. Using Special Cat Litter Boxes
You can also try using a specially designed hooded litter box. This type of litter box that keep dogs away utilizes hoods and two-way access points designed for cats while keeping dogs out. However, please note that it can trap the smell of your cat’s stool which might deter them from using it in the future. Again, regular cleaning should prevent any issues here. Using this type of litterbox is quite convenient as most will feature an easy to clean design. You can also choose hooded litter boxes from the list of best litter boxes for cats.
8. Installing a Dog Proof Door Buddy
If using a pet gate or installing a cat door isn’t on the cards for you, try Door Buddy! This adjustable door strap is a quick and easy way to stop your dog from eating cat poop from the litter box. What’s even better is that it doesn’t require any tools or crazy installations. All you have to do is stick the strap to your door and frame, adjust the width wide enough for your cat, and hook it into place. Your cat can come and go as they please while your dog stays firmly out. Door Buddy is available to purchase through Amazon or on their website.
Now I'm sure you already know how to stop a dog from eating cat poop. By incorporating any of the methods listed above you can help prevent your dog from munching on extremely unhealthy ‘snacks’ from your cat. Remember to keep your area clean and make sure both your pets are properly trained and you won’t be encountering any pet-related problems in the future. Sometimes it is just in your dog’s nature to snack on anything they find mildly enticing. You can’t punish them for that which means you will be the one who needs to adjust to ensure the safety of both your furry best friends.