Thursday, October 30, 2008

Dog Poop Consumption

Hollywood has taken up the habit of attempting to eat some of the stray poop laying about the neighborhood while we take walks in the mornings. I have to say for all of the discussion I have generally about the minutia of pooping every day, I find myself a largely repulsed, and a little ill every time she does or tries to eat the feces of other dogs. And since we live in Lawrenceville there is dog poop everywhere. Perhaps, this is a kind of anthropomorphic image that I am projecting on her, like that all cute things should only consume things that are likewise cute, as in sugary, pink foam. A similar anthropomorphism I think occurs when we project the cuteness of babies across species, so that in any other species that has this attribute likewise requires, indeed needs, the care and caresses demanded by babies.


This is a lesson many learn of the chihuahuas owned by a lesbian couple in the neighborhood, who bark madly, particularly when approached by children: lesson being that cute things do not necessarily want to cuddle or even have contact with humans. A former Portland roommate of mine had a dog (Beija) with a similar temperament. Beija urinated in my room several times when I moved in and barked at my every approach, but when I walked her we were best friends, and she is ultimately one of the reasons I wanted a dog at all. Her manifesto "not a stuffed animal" can be read here

Two sites of interest document some of the reasons dogs consume dog poop:

20 Reasons Why dogs eat poop

Dog Eating

Some of the interesting reasons include that dogs learn from their owners (who pick up poop in bags) and do so accordingly, recent mothers protecting their litter of puppies from predators--eliminating evidence of prey-worthy vulnerable pups, poor nutrition from actual foods, and obviously because they like the taste. Although I cannot account for the psychological reasons or the taste possibility, I know Hollywood gets plenty of nutritious food because we often given her broccoli stems, carrots, and fruit bits, as well as holistic food dog treats--yeah, we are that kind of dog owners.

I am hoping with time this tendency will fade particularly because I just imagine all the ways that the consumed poop could emerge out of Hollywood's body, through her skin, etc., which still makes me a bit queasy.

For some reason I accidentally made it such that no comments could be left for this post. That has been changed. Comment away on my dog poop problems.

1 comment:

sns78 said...

my dog doesn't do the eating but she sure likes to sniff and take a lick. After a long walk consisting of sniff and lick she always likes to get home, jump in my arms, and lick me right in the mouth. I gues I should get over mu reservations about any kind of anal since I've had random encounters with unknown dog's feces. Yeah enough to make me sick but aren't our dogs so cute