Pica is an appetite for non-food items, when a pet consumes substances that are not meant to be eaten (fabric, stones, plastic, polyethylene, soil, etc).

Eating inedible things may cause health problems.

It is a common misconception that dogs know what nutrients exactly they are lacking and that they only eat things that their body is craving.

This is not true! This way dogs might eat something that will cause a blockage in the digestive tract.

This problem is not well-researched. But there are several reasons that cause pica in dogs. One of the fully proven ones is a disorder(s) in the functioning of the organism.

Namely, vitamin, mineral and micronutrient deficiencies (natrium, chlorine, calcium, etc).

Pica can also be caused by a tapeworm infection. Helminths produce toxins that cause the problem.

This disorder is caused by other infectious diseases too – for instance, rabies.

One of the most common types of pica is consumption of feces. This disorder is called coprophagia, and it causes a lot of worrying to dog parents. Undoubtedly, not the most pleasant phenomenon.

The reasons for coprophagia are exactly the same as for pica in general.

That is why the first thing you should do if you notice such behavior in your dog is contact your veterinarian.

This is the first step in treating pica – addressing the reason and working with it. Unless that that is done, the situation will remain the same.