Around our neighborhood, dogs have been dining on irresistible delights from area lawns. With a plethora of bunnies hopping around, there’s an ample supply of rabbit poop hidden in the blades of grass. And many dogs are thrilled to find it – scarfing it down before their owners can redirect them. We’ve all been wondering the same thing: Is it okay for our dogs to eat rabbit poop?
So I did a little digging (pardon the pun.) From what I could find on the subject, it’s not a big deal for dogs to eat rabbit poop. Coprophagia, aka Eating Excrement, is normally not a particularly healthy thing for dogs to do. Many eat their own waste. This can be a cause for concern, and requires a check with the vet. It may or may not signal a health issue.
Lots of dogs love to eat cat poop – CindyLu included. Snackies are her birthright, apparently, and a trophy earned for having to live with cats. But eating the excrement from other carnivorous animals carries a risk of acquiring parasites, bacteria, or disease. Indoor cats don’t carry much risk themselves, but any outdoor animals are certainly questionable.
Rabbits, however, just eat grains and plants. And because they are not carnivorous, the diseases they are vulnerable to are not transferable to dogs.
Eating poop may stem from an ancient instinct in dogs to make sure they get all the nutrition they need – rabbit poop is high in B vitamins. Interestingly, it also provides digestive enzymes, which as Dr. Becker explains in the video below, dogs can “recycle”. This is particularly true of dogs that have a diet of dry processed foods and are therefore enzyme-deficient.
Fleas and ticks hover around many creatures, though, including rabbits. And lawns, gardens, anywhere rabbits may be found might be treated with chemicals or solutions that could cause upset stomach in your dog if exposed to them. Sometimes dogs like to eat grass, too. If your dog develops gastrointestinal symptoms, such as vomiting, diarrhea, lethargy, it’s best to contact your vet. It’s not likely he’s gotten sick from eating bunny stool, though.
So, the answer to the question? It may be gross, but t’s okay for your dog to eat rabbit poop (in moderation.) She’s rounding out her diet, getting her B vitamins and possibly some needed digestive enzymes, and dining on what apparently is a very tasty delicacy for dogs!
Sources: Dr. Becker: Why Do Dogs Eat Poop?