Why Does My Dog Eat Paper?

Dogs can eat many different things. They can either be playing with a foreign object and swallow it accidentally, or be seeking a particular substance out to actually ingest it. Some things they eat can be quite strange, such as paper. This atypical behavior in which dogs ingest non-food objects can affect the gastrointestinal system, leading to vomiting and diarrhea.

Reasons for dogs eating these items, such as paper, include: Nutritional deficiencies Polyphagia Endocrine disorders Diabetes Calorie-lacking diet Curiosity, especially if dealing with a puppy or a dog that is bored or under-stimulated

Compare plans Dogs may eat paper for a variety of reasons. Something as simple as an upset stomach or behavioral issue can trigger this habit. If your dog has nutritional deficiencies, he may crave non-food items, such as paper.

The depletion of specific minerals, such as iron, can leave your dog craving paper or paper-like substances. If your dog is lacking iron in the blood, known as anemia, he may seek out this object to consume. If your dog is overly stressed and anxious, he may find it calming to chew and ingest paper.

If paper is readily available in his environment, he may seek it out and eat it because of the texture. Endocrine disorders can cause your dog to feel more hungry than normal. Diabetes can make your dog hungrier due to his body not being able to utilise the sugar within the bloodstream.

If there is not any food for him, or if he is just not getting enough, he may chew and ingest paper to satisfy his appetite. If your dog is eating paper, make an appointment with your veterinarian. They may ask you several types of questions pertaining to your dogs health history and behavior.

They will also discuss your dog‘s diet and eating schedule in detail. He may palpate your dog‘s belly to check for any bloating, perform blood work, urinalysis, and a stool analysis. If your veterinarian suspects your dog has a gastrointestinal condition, he may perform imaging, such as an ultrasound, or endoscopy to take a closer look.

If underlying health conditions are not found, your veterinarian may attribute your dogs paper eating habits to behavior. If this is the case, he will give you advice on what you can do at home in order to stop the habit. If his behavior is severe or quite stubborn, and your dog continues to seek out paper objects to eat, he may recommend a behavioral therapist to help you help your dog.

If your dog continues to seek out paper, you may need the help of a behavioral therapist or advice from your veterinarian. Be sure to avoid unsafe rawhides and bones and always research your dogs chew toys. You can ask your veterinarian for advice on safe chewing objects for your companion.

It is always wise to follow your veterinarians instructions on treatment for your pet. The sooner you insure your pet, the more protection youll have from unexpected vet costs.*Wag! may collect a share of sales or other compensation from the links on this page.

The article below says Husky but the principles may be applied to any breed; this seems like a behavioural problem more than a medical one so training and time outs are important to show this is an undesired behaviour. Also in the link below you may ask a follow up question to a certified dog trainer. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM
https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-husky-to-not-destroy

Toilet paper, pbathroom towels, sticks, wood, his toys (which we no longer buy him), plastic, etc. My dog is eating newspaper and/or potty pads that they have urinated recently, so it is not dry. If Dolce is eating newspaper and potty pads, you may need to lift them up after she uses them so that she isn’t attracted to them.

If you think that she is developing an odd behavior, it would be a good idea to have her seen so that she can be examined by your veterinarian, in case something else is going on.

Is it OK for dogs to eat paper?

Many dogs don’t eat the paper they play with —the joy is in the ripping up—but if pups do ingest napkins or tissues, there could be serious health consequences. “Small amounts of paper will just pass through a dog’s digestive tract,” says Dr.

Why is my dog eating paper and cardboard?

“ If your dog has nutritional deficiencies, he may crave non-food items, such as paper. The depletion of specific minerals, such as iron, can leave your dog craving paper or paper-like substances. If your dog is lacking iron in the blood, known as anemia, he may seek out this object to consume.”

What if a dog eats paper?

What to do if your Dog is Eating Paper. If your dog is eating paper, make an appointment with your veterinarian. Your veterinarian may be able to find the root cause of this behavior. Your veterinarian will begin with a consultation with you.

How do you treat pica in dogs?

Leash walk your dog and distract him from eating objects or poop with treats and praise. Teach him the “leave it” command. Try covering the objects with a bitter apple spray or cayenne pepper. Provide lots of safe toys and chewing objects that your pet can’t swallow.

Although it is always good to recycle, scrap paper or paper towels becoming your dogs dinner is probably not the kind of recycling you had in mind! With paper being a common item found around the house, dogs eating paper is more common than you might think.

In this guide, Ive put together some helpful notes which will explain why dogs eat paper, what it means when it suddenly starts, why it could be bad, and what you need to do to make it stop. Of course, dogs dont have the same level of self-awareness of humans (despite being incredibly intelligent), so it goes without saying that they arent likely to consider the potential health implications.

Whilst pica is mostly associated with compulsive behavioural patterns and anxiety in dogs, that is not necessarily the only reason why theyd want to eat paper. When dogs are anxious or stressed, they can quickly form destructive habits, sometimes to get attention or due to boredom. The depletion of specific minerals, such as iron, can leave your dog craving paper or paper-like substances.

This might be quite an obvious one, but this is probably more likely to be the case if your dog is bigger, as this will mean that they have a larger appetite that is not quite satisfied by their current portion size. Their hunger could also be a sign of illness, as conditions such as diabetes and high blood sugar levels make your dog want to eat more. When their body cant produce insulin, they will tend to want to chew on other things such as paper towels and also drink more.

When dogs tear apart paper and then chew it, it harks back to the ancestors doing exactly the same thing to their prey! Your dog can eat paper all of a sudden due to some of the issues listed above relating to pica, but including in total possibilities such as: Its very hard to diagnose why dogs eat paper, but often there will be an underlying issue that vets can get to the bottom of.

Whether its safe or harmful for dogs to eat paper is a matter of degrees, volume, and context. So, when it comes to the question of whether it is bad for dogs to eat paper, the simple answer is that size matters as does the regularity. For example, the size of your dog can play a huge role in whether the amount of paper they consume is harmful.

Because some breeds, such as French Bulldogs, have smaller body and organ sizes, eating a dozen paper towels or napkins is more serious for them than it is for a Labrador or Golden Retriever, who have comparatively larger bodies, organs and digestive systems. Scroll down to find out more Eating newspaper or paper towels, for example, can be bad because as well as causing a huge blockage, it can absorb a lot of bodily fluid and dehydrate them. Meanwhile, magazines can be problematic because its heavier, glossy nature means that it has sharper edges that can cut your dogs oesophagus or stomach.

So, in some situations, it can actually be quite dangerous if your dog eats a lot of paper, so if you suspect this has happened, it is important to take them to the emergency vets immediately. A lack of appetite Bloating Weight loss A severe sensitivity around the stomach area A rapid decline in health Constipation Lethargy Throwing up Diarrhoea Dehydration If you have a dog obsessed with chewing paper towels and such like, then many of the reasons listed earlier can be solved through making small changes like adapting diets, devoting more time to your dog or giving them more exercise and toys to play with.

To solve this problem, your vet will be able to run a number of tests to find these deficiencies and deal with them appropriately. It is much better to gently redirect their attention with a toy, treat or activity so that they can quickly lose interest in the tasty paper. Whilst researching this topic, I spoke to dog owners who had the following questions which deserved further investigation.

Some parchment paper will be lined with silicone, which sounds like it would be bad for a dog but should still be relatively digestible in small amounts. If your dog eats a small amount of waxed paper it is likely to pass through with their stools just fine so keep an eye on the poop for a couple of days.

When your pet starts acting out, it can be confusing, amusing, or downright worrying. In some cases, the sudden change in dog behavior can mean something serious is at play. Of course, there are many things can affect a dogs behavior but, when its something tangible like finding your pet eating paper, it can be good to know that at least there is solid reasoning behind it and there is even some definitive action you can take.

Running around the house at high speed for no other reason than to burn off some energy can be completely abnormal for us- and totally normal for dogs. If your dog is suddenly eating wood, or likes to hunt down sanitary towels for a snack, it all comes under the same branch- its all due to suffering from Pica.

Naturally, the treatment can then be easily administered through a change in diet, or with supplements to maintain a healthy balance of vitamins and minerals. Essentially, this is a mild case of food sickness or diarrhea , involving runny stools, lethargy, dehydration, vomiting and generally feeling very sorry for themselves. These include malabsorption of food (so your pooch may be eating the right stuff but its not getting into his or her system and fulfilling that nutritional need), missing vitamins or nutrients, or hormonal imbalances.

While medication should only ever be considered as a last resort, these can be an absolute life saver for those whose dogs are so nervous they regurgitate or completely destroy dry wall and furniture around the house, when anxious. Border collies, for example, are somewhat known for their destructive behavior when bored and will often ruin furniture when puppies, as all their energy needs refocusing. Taking your dog for a long walk and spending time throughout the day, nurturing their intelligence- even with some basic commands- can makes a huge difference to the behavior shown by your pup.

If you think your dog is bored or anxious, be sure to approach gently, without shouting at them or telling them off- after all, no matter what the reasoning is, they arent doing this just to spite you, or to make you angry. If you follow some of the advice above, you may find that symptoms improve infinitely, and you and your dog will be able to enjoy a full, happy life together.

1. Anxiety and stress

When dogs are anxious or stressed, they can quickly form destructive habits, sometimes to get attention or due to boredom. This can manifest itself with things like paper shredding, and then eating the paper itself.By eating paper, it can have a calming effect on your dog, as the texture in their mouth can be soothing, as can the act of shredding before eating too.

3. The paper smells like you

According to Wag.com, dogs will often resort to eating paper and paper towels if they have nutritional deficiencies. They say:

4. They are just hungry

This might be quite an obvious one, but this is probably more likely to be the case if your dog is bigger, as this will mean that they have a larger appetite that is not quite satisfied by their current portion size.Your dog might be craving more calories, and only satisfy that craving by eating paper towels and newspaper found around the house.Alternatively, if your dog is fussy and doesn’t like the brand of kibble you give them, you might find them trying to find different food sources from elsewhere.Because dogs are descendants of wolves, many breeds still have fairly strong hunting instincts, so when they eat paper that might be their own way of ‘hunting’.Their hunger could also be a sign of illness, as conditions such as diabetes and high blood sugar levels make your dog want to eat more. When their body can’t produce insulin, they will tend to want to chew on other things such as paper towels and also drink more.

5. They find it fun!

Dogs are playful animals, and with paper being a fairly malleable materials with its ability to shred, they might be inclined to chew and consume paper because they see it as a new fun toy!There’s also the element of “hunting” instincts. When dogs tear apart paper and then chew it, it harks back to the ancestors doing exactly the same thing to their prey!

1. Check for underlying deficiencies

As mentioned, one reason dogs might be inclined to eat paper is because they’re still hungry, and one reason why that might be the case is if they are unable to absorb the nutrients from their food properly, as this will lead to them seeking these nutrients elsewhere.To solve this problem, your vet will be able to run a number of tests to find these deficiencies and deal with them appropriately.

2. Make your home a paper-free zone

Make sure to keep all papers locked away or too high for your dog to reach. Lock doors to the bathroom and toilet so they can’t play with toilet paper. If they have no means of accessing paper, or they find it too difficult, they will give up.

3. Invest in chew toys

If your dog chews the morning paper because they just love chewing, or are still teething as a puppy, it is a good idea to give them some chew toys so that they can focus their attention on these much healthier outlets.I found that my own dog loves to chew on

4. Redirection

I do not recommend disciplining your dog with shouting and punishment when they eat paper, because this may lead to them eating it more in order to attract your attention.It is much better to gently redirect their attention with a toy, treat or activity so that they can quickly lose interest in the tasty paper.

Related questions

Whilst researching this topic, I spoke to dog owners who had the following questions which deserved further investigation.