Why Do Dogs Eat Grass and Throw Up?

by | Nov 1, 2022

It seems like every dog does it–dogs eat grass and vomit. Almost like they’re making themselves sick on purpose. It turns out that when dogs eat grass and vomit, that may be very much what they’re doing. The question is about why they need to vomit in the first place.

Do dogs like salad?

The debate over whether dogs are carnivores, herbivores or even omnivorous rages on, but there’s a little bit of ‘yes’ to each domain.

Research suggests that dogs have a natural bias towards meat and carnivorous diets. DNA suggests that dogs evolved from the carnivorous timber wolves about 15,000 years ago.

That said, they’re pretty decent omnivores too. They are able to digest carbohydrate-based foods well, and heck, many dogs even enjoy fruits and vegetables as treats!

So while they may be biased toward a carnivorous diet, they do eat and often enjoy plant-based items. Is that what they’re doing when dogs eat grass, then?

Do dogs like how grass tastes?

They might. Some dog parents find that their dogs do tend to gravitate toward certain types of grasses or weeds–clovers or even dandelions and they may enjoy the taste of grass.

Some dogs enjoy eating grass like you enjoy arugula on your salad; it’s some extra roughage that may present in an appealing way to dogs.

Of course, this may be an evolved behavior, as the ancestors of our furry best friends instinctively ate whatever animals they could catch.

Sometimes, that included the animal’s stomach contents–which likely held the grass that fed them. It could also be instinct because they’re used to perusing the grass for leftovers of animals, and sometimes they’ll chomp some grass along the way.

Some researchers believe that up to half the wolves of today still eat grass sometimes, so if your doggo does it, she’s likely tapping into her inner self.

Typically, dogs who eat grass instinctively don’t throw up after.

Does my dog eat grass because he’s bored?

This could very well be the case. Some veterinarians believe that dogs eat grass just because they’re bored or stressed. Some anxious dogs might have upset tummies, and they’ll eat grass instinctively in hopes of balancing them out.

Some behavior experts believe that dogs will eat grass to get the attention of their owners, though if your dog is eating grass to get your attention or due to boredom, it’s likely they wouldn’t eat enough to make their stomach upset.

Are there any benefits to my dogs eating grass?

Grass often contains roughage, as we said, that might help your dog digest his food better–it also has digestive enzymes and phytonutrients that some believe are of benefit.

But, eating grass is not a consistent way to ensure the best digestion for your dog, and it’s more likely that your dog is eating grass to tend to his upset stomach.

Why do dogs eat grass for upset stomachs?

While we obviously can’t have our dog tell us their tummy hurts and that’s why they’re eating grass, many experts believe it’s a good instinctive reason that dogs eat grass and vomit.

Eating the grass does offer roughage, and some vets even liken this to your dog eating an antacid, but they usually vomit very quickly after.

Whether they’re doing it on purpose or they’re just instinctively doing it can’t really be known, but it’s pretty commonly linked.

Vets don’t often have a way to tell if the proverbial chicken comes before the egg, so to speak, but either way–eating grass can cause a dog to vomit, and that may make their unsettled stomach feel better.

It’s also likely a sign that they’re not getting enough fiber in the first place, and they intuitively try to remedy the situation with grass.

Dogs eating grass and vomiting may mean there’s a problem with digestion.

If you notice your dog is eating more grass, you may want to consider his diet. Being sure that his diet is rich in premium fiber and digestive enzymes can help ward off the need to eat grass altogether. When your dog digests food appropriately, he’s less likely to feel the need to ‘help’ his digestion along, and he’ll be less likely to eat grass as well.

What to do if your dog keeps eating grass and throwing up

If you are giving your dog high-quality food that has enough fiber and digestive enzymes in it, you’re on the right path. It’s still likely, however, that the fiber is not enough, and your dog could use additional fiber as well as digestive enzymes, pre- and probiotics.

That’s where Bernie’s Perfect Poop comes in!

We combine Miscanthus grass, digestive enzymes, prebiotics and hardy, spore-forming probiotics to make sure your dog’s digestive system is in tip-top shape.

The fiber allows your dog’s food to go through his system at just the right speed for maximum nutrient absorption and the pre- and probiotics allow your dog to have a flourishing microbiome full of beneficial bacteria.

When your dog’s digestive system is working as it should, he won’t feel the need to vomit, even if he does chew on the occasional grass blade or two, and it’s as easy as a couple of scoops a day to make sure his gut is the healthiest it can be.

We always recommend you talk with your vet if your dog continues to exhibit behaviors that worry you, and frequent vomiting is a concern.

But we also believe that you can ward off many digestive concerns with just a couple of scoops of either of our two delicious recipes!

And hey, like we said, consider giving some cucumbers or carrots as treats for your good boy or girl! That’ll satisfy the salad urge!

Bernie’s Notes on Eating Grass and Throwing Up

Hi friends!

It’s me, Bernie!

We know, we know.
It’s never fun to watch us throw up.

And I bet you think that’s why we eat the grass in the first place.

Actually, sometimes it is, but you can help our tummies feel better if you just make sure our guts are healthy.

The easiest way to do that is to give us Bernie’s Perfect Poop!

It’s got the perfect blend of high-quality fiber, pre- and probiotics and digestive enzymes–all way better than grass and it tastes better too!

Some dogs just like the way grass feels in their teeth. But most of us won’t eat enough to make us throw up unless our tummies are icky–and Bernie’s Perfect Poop can help take care of that easy-peasy!

Thanks for being the great hooman you are!
We sure do love you!

Bernie F.
Chief Dog Officer

Illustration of Bernie sitting and smiling.

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