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Why do dogs eat grass?

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Is it true that dogs eat grass to purge themselves?

It is not possible to take this assessment as true, based on the fact that not all dogs vomit after eating grass . Scientific studies carried out on this behavior have shown that these animals have a natural attraction to plants and that they do not necessarily seek to eat them motivated by discomfort.

Additionally, it has been proven that this behavior is more frequent in young dogs and the vomiting reaction usually occurs with a higher incidence in those that show some symptom of stomach disease before ingesting it. But then, what motivates this strange behavior?

Where does that strange habit of eating grass come from?

Despite the fact that it is a fairly common behavior, little is really known about it and scientifically it has not been possible to verify with certainty what is the reason that motivates this behavior, although a study carried out by the scientific journal webMD has established that at least 80% of dogs have this habit , so it is not strange if your dog does it too.

With regard to this, some studies have been carried out that can help clarify this question and some of the next paragraphs will be discussed about them, in order to provide you with accurate information in this regard.

Possible causes that motivate this behavior

There are three possible reasons to justify this common tendency for dogs to eat grass and although through the aforementioned studies it has been determined that these would not be the only motivations for this behavior, the truth is that dogs can use them in a certain moment, these are:

Stomach ache

If your dog is suffering from indigestion or has swallowed a foreign body and feels the need to somehow expel it to relieve himself, he may seek to eat grass to induce vomiting .

It is known that grass contains a substance capable of promoting the secretion of liquid in your body and making you vomit, but this is not the only motivation nor does it necessarily work for all dogs on all occasions.

Nutrient deficiency

Just as in humans, the intake of vegetables provides fiber and improves the digestive process to avoid constipation, in the same way the consumption of grass works in dogs.

This behavior can be instinctive in them if they feel the need to improve their intestinal transit and they will do it simply because they know that this can benefit their digestion, although they overlook that it can also cause vomiting , we are talking about a purely animal behavior.

Scientific study about these causes

In 2008, scientists at the University of California were motivated to see if dogs really only eat grass when they feel sick to their stomachs or because of a nutritional deficiency.

To evaluate this hypothesis , they cited 25 veterinary students who had dogs as pets and all claimed that their dog ate grass. However, none of them had noticed any symptoms of illness that preceded this behavior and only 8% confirmed that the animal vomited after this.

According to these results, the scientists extended the study by inquiring with 47 dog owners, of which 79% claimed to have seen their dog eating grass, of this percentage only 4 people detected discomfort in the canine after doing so and another 6 They claimed that their dog vomited after ingesting it.

The study continued and expanded the scope to 1,571 dog owners, of whom 68% reported seeing their dog eat grass frequently, 8% reported discomfort afterward, and 22% reported vomiting afterward.

The conclusions obtained from this study ensure that eating grass in dogs is a natural behavior and that it is not necessarily a consequence of an upset stomach , although in those dogs that show illness and then eat grass, the act does occur more frequently of the vomit.

Regarding the second cause, no evidence was found that could confirm that dogs do this to compensate for some nutritional deficiency, since in some of the dogs studied fruits and vegetables were included in their diets, but this did not have any notable effect on their interest. for eating grass.

Inheritance of your ancestors

It is scientifically proven that dogs come from wolves, who would have the habit of consuming grass to kill intestinal parasites .

The effectiveness of this method is proven for two reasons, the first one is that the consumption of these vegetable elements serves to drag the worms that may be present in the intestinal tract and the second is that this promotes the contractions of the intestines to facilitate even more that expulsion .

Based on this evidence, it is logical that younger dogs have this more ingrained habit by demonstrating more primitive behavior, while adults lose some of this behavior as they are domesticated and learn new habits.

These are the most frequent reasons that motivate dogs to eat grass, however we have made it clear that they are not the only ones, because it is not possible to affirm that they all do it under the same impulse and obviously this behavior does not have the same effect in each one of them.

There are even some who are drawn to eat it when it is covered in dew drops for the simple pleasure of feeling the moisture in their mouth or hydrating themselves .

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The Impact of Animal Welfare Organizations on Communities

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Animal rescue efforts are essential for local communities because they help save animals’ lives and promote policies that prevent animal cruelty. They can also provide educational opportunities to community members.

Stakeholder networks must be resilient to the disturbances that inevitably affect their work. Ideally, they can adapt to these disturbances without losing their identity or purpose.

Advocacy

Animal welfare organizations frequently advocate to champion policies benefiting animals and humans. Examples include collaborating with lawmakers to promote responsible pet ownership, eliminate breed-discriminatory laws, and develop more humane housing options for pets. Some organizations, such as The Humane Society of New York (HSNY), a non-profit dedicated to animal welfare, extend their efforts beyond advocacy. HSNY provides essential and emergency medical services for cats and dogs, offering shelter and day-to-day care for rescued animals until suitable owners can be found. Additionally, animal welfare organizations undertake community programs, such as hosting low-cost spay/neuter clinics, organizing adoption fairs, and implementing no-kill initiatives to achieve shelter save rates of 90% or higher.

Some of the most successful advocates work in countries with established farmed animal movements that are more willing to accept and support activist tactics like street protests and other high-profile campaigns that generate media attention. However, talented and well-prepared individuals can get involved with farmed animal advocacy even in countries where these strategies could be more effective. This could include working as a volunteer or offering to act in a temporary care role, such as a foster home for a farm animal.

Educating the Community

Many animal control and field services officers believed community outreach was essential to their organizations. These officers felt that a focus on providing events for the public to interact with them personally increased community trust and led to positive outcomes for animals and people alike.

Officers also identified a need to continue outreach programs such as pet food pantries and community cats. Other resources that could be added included community veterinary clinics, free or low-cost spay/neuter services, and training for animal behaviorists.

These programs can address human inequities that limit access to pet care and veterinary services, contributing to the risk of shelter relinquishment. In addition, research has shown that community stressors such as economic disadvantage, poverty, crime, crowded housing, and high percentages of female-headed households are related to higher levels of reported animal cruelty. Providing pet support services may be an effective strategy for addressing these social stressors. This study’s findings can help these organizations establish and manage programs that benefit their communities and the animals within them.

Volunteer Management

The ability to recruit, train, and manage volunteers is a critical component of an animal welfare organization. A thriving volunteer program helps reduce staffing shortages and overwork, which can lead to burnout among animal shelter personnel and volunteers.

Although there are many books on general volunteer management, there needs to be more specific information available for animal care and control organizations on how to recruit and retain volunteers. This specialized manual fills that gap.

Community engagement is essential to addressing the root causes of animal cruelty and neglect. Research shows that areas with higher levels of human economic stress have higher rates of stray intake and euthanasia. Providing pet support services, such as food and supplies, low-cost veterinary care, training assistance, fences, and crates, in communities with financial distress is a critical way to improve access to the resources needed to keep pets healthy and thriving.

Fundraising

Animal welfare organizations depend on donors to fund their operations, and these supporters can be a crucial resource for helping animals. Faunalytics has researched how people support animal-focused causes and found that donating to an organization with a clear mission is associated with higher satisfaction levels for the donor.

Officers also discussed community engagement and how it related to their work. Many officers described the need for a more collaborative approach with their community. Some pointed out that there is a need for more resources to help with outreach and education and to allow officers the opportunity to interact with the public.

Other officers noted that “trap neuter return” (TNR) programs have positively impacted trust in the community and reduced the number of healthy cats euthanized. However, some officers indicated that they struggle to get support from their supervisors and leadership (“they should do more”) and from other local animal control and field service organizations and governments (“wish they had a different perspective”). This is an area where partnerships can be beneficial.

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Ways You Can Support Animal Welfare in Your Community

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Animal shelters and rescue groups do so much for pets and people, often with limited resources. Please show them your appreciation by donating your time, items, or money.

Every animal welfare organization has bills to pay, including veterinary care, food, and supplies. Monetary donations help with daily operations, training, animal housing upgrades, and community outreach programs.

Donate to a Shelter

Many local animal welfare programs and shelters rely on monetary donations to continue their work in the community. Donations help fund staff, supplies, and housing upgrades. Donations can also allow shelters to offer fee-free pet adoptions during a certain period to alleviate overcrowding and increase adoptions.

Check with your local shelter to see what physical items they need. Many have wish lists that can be viewed on their social media pages or websites to ensure your donation is most beneficial to the organization.

Often, the best way to donate is through a fundraiser. Hosting your fundraiser can help you greatly impact the lives of needy animals. The funds raised can be used for anything from staff training to pet food.

Volunteer

Millions of dogs and cats come into animal shelters nationwide each year, and sadly, many of them will never be adopted. One way to assist is by offering your services as a volunteer at a nearby shelter or rescue group, such as Virginia Chipurnoi does. Whether walking dogs, socializing cats, or assisting with adoptions, your time is greatly appreciated!

Other volunteer opportunities include implementing trap-neuter-return for community cats (TNR), helping to raise funds, and supporting ongoing fundraisers. Check-in with your local shelter to see what their current needs are.

You can also become a vocal advocate for animals in your community by boycotting companies that experiment on animals and stores that promote pet mills, speaking out against cruelty, and voting for bills that will protect animal welfare. Incorporate these activities into your daily routine to prioritize animal welfare and give voiceless animals a fighting chance.

Adopt a Pet

Getting involved with your local animal shelter or rescue group is a great way to support animals and their well-being. Depending on the organization, you can volunteer, donate items, or even foster pets! Fostering is where you take in a pet temporarily to help ease overcrowding.

Each year, 8 to 12 million dogs, cats, and puppies are euthanized because there aren’t enough homes for them. Adopting from a shelter or rescue helps to break this cycle!

Supporting animal welfare can also mean promoting compassion towards animals and educating others to be responsible with their pets. Reporting cruelty is essential to helping fight this issue and ensuring that animals are treated respectfully. Nipping this problem in the bud is crucial for their long-term health and happiness.

Report Cruelty

You can help end cruelty by donating to local shelters and volunteering. You can also spread the word about responsible pet ownership and support initiatives to strengthen animal anti-cruelty laws.

If you witness abuse or neglect, it’s important to report it immediately. Signs of abuse can include untreated wounds, thinness or lack of food, and behavioral signs like aggression, fear, withdrawal, and more. Providing detailed information and photos can assist the police and other authorities when investigating suspected cruelty. Reporting animals in need can also help protect yourself; state law provides legal indemnity for veterinarians who act to stop the mistreatment of pets and other animals. Including animal welfare in your community’s daily lives helps prioritize animals, and it can start at home by teaching children about compassion and respect for all living creatures.

Educate Others

From shelter pets to wildlife, all animals need our help sometimes. Volunteering, fostering, and making a donation are just a few ways that you can help.

Building a coalition of animal welfare and social service organizations is another way to increase the number of animals your community can greatly help. Coalitions can help prevent duplication of efforts and ensure that your community works together to address the issues.

Talk to your local lawmakers about policies that prioritize animal welfare. They can be a huge factor in shaping the future of your community. Encourage them to support cage-free products, ask restaurants to stop serving shark fin soup, and promote humane education. It’s the small changes that make a difference.

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The best plant based organic food ranges for your pet.

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Many people choose to buy organic foods to live a healthy lifestyle and protect the environment. Should pet owners also make this switch for their four-legged friends? The answer is yes, Organic plant based pet food can be found practically everywhere, but you need a reliable place to buy plant based food for your furry.

Boosie.co is the most reliable food selling store for your pets. Their plant based food promote canine and feline health by including essential vitamins and minerals, such as vitamin B12, vitamin E and zinc. In general, they are prepared with natural ingredients, such as edible mushrooms, vegetables and flaxseed oil. The main benefit of switching to organic food is promoting your pet’s health.

Their organic diets use ingredients grown without the application of pesticides or chemical fertilizers. The organic diets are designed and produced using all the specialized care and health knowledge you would expect from a veterinary pet nutrition brand, but made with organic ingredients.

Some tips for introducing your pet to plant based organic food.

1. Use foods of plant origin as a topping on his usual food: placing 2 or 3 spoons of vegan food on your pet’s usual meal is an excellent way to vary his diet while benefiting from the benefits of foods of plant origin.

2. Try Meatless Mondays: Follow the human trend and start with small steps. This is a great way to introduce your pet to the delights of vegan pet food.

3. Go for half portions of meal: Try offering your pet vegan options for half of his meals. You can try vegan breakfasts or dinners. The boosie.co herbal range is available in different recipes, so you are spoiled for choice.

4. Take it easy: A sudden change in diet can upset pet’s delicate stomach. For your information, the transition to super food should be done gradually over a period of 2 weeks. They should replace 25% of their current food for 3 to 5 days, then 50% for another 3 to 5 days, and finally 75% for the final days. For the most sensitive stomachs you can facilitate the transition by giving different tablets which will provide an additional supply of prebiotics and probiotics and help to find a good balance of the intestinal flora.

5. Be flexitarian: you decide what your pet eats. If you want to try your pet’s regular meat foods along with plant foods, that’s perfect. The choice is up to you and the furry.

6. Eat a fully vegan diet: Research has shown that pets can thrive on a vegan diet, as long as it is nutritionally balanced and contains all the essential nutrients a pet needs. Once your pet has adjusted to his new diet, you can transition to a completely vegan diet. Scientific evidence shows that plant-based foods can provide all the nutrients, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants that helps your pet to stay healthy, while providing a clean, transparent and sustainable alternative to meat-based diets. A vegan diet can also help regulate your pet’s weight.

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