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Can Eating Cat Litter Box Contents Make My Dog Fat?

Can eating cat litter box contents make your dog fat?

Have you ever heard the term "kitty roca"? It's a cute way to talk about the contents of the litter box that some dogs just can't help themselves from eating as a snack.

While comparing it to a type of chocolate treat might make it more palatable to discuss, most dog owners agree that the habit of consuming kitty roca is disgusting (who wants a doggie kiss after that?)

But some owners wonder whether it could actually be negatively impacting their dog's health.

Will My Dog Become Overweight By Eating Kitty Roca?

If your dog struggles with maintaining an optimum weight, could his litter box raiding habit be derailing your efforts to get him to lose weight?

While your dog isn't likely to become overweight from eating kitty roca, an already overweight dog may have more trouble losing weight if raiding the litter box is a consistent habit.

Other Concerns for Dogs Eating Litter Box Contents

Beyond the weight issue, there are several other concerns with dogs eating kitty roca that might be even more pressing:

  • Pets can share parasites this way, causing a vicious cycle of worms in your home. If your cat has intestinal parasites, your dog is likely ingesting the eggs when he eats her poop, infecting himself. This can become quite a problem in households trying to overcome a parasite problem because the animals are continually passing eggs back and forth. Remember, your dog can also share some of those parasites with you and your family members by licking your face.
  • Dogs with allergies might be triggered by eating the cat's stool. If your dog has food allergies and your cat's food contains the problem component, eating the kitty roca will likely trigger your dog's allergy symptoms. This can be quite a problem because it's not always something that occurs to the owner or veterinarian right away, so a dog may undergo more tests or food trials unnecessarily.
  • Cat food is higher in fat and protein than dog food. Your dog gets some of that when he eats your cat's stool, and it can cause him to have gastrointestinal upset, such as vomiting and diarrhea.
  • Eating cat litter can be bad news for a dog. When your dog eats his kitty roca treat, he's getting some cat litter along with the cat stool. Chemicals in the litter may make him sick, and clumping litter can cause serious intestinal obstructions and GI upset.
  • Cats may stop using a litter box frequently raided by a dog. While this isn't a concern for your dog's health, it can be a huge problem for your household. Your cat may start eliminating outside of the litter box because she's angry or afraid about the dog getting into it all the time.

How to Stop Your Dog from Eating Kitty Roca

We can all agree that eating kitty roca is a bad habit for our dogs. But how can you get yours to give up his "treat"?

  • Make your cat litter box(es) inaccessible to your dog. There are several ways you can do this, including:
    • Placing the box in a high spot where your cat can jump up to it but your dog isn't able to
    • Using baby gates that your cat can get under or over but that keep your dog out
    • Putting the litter box in a closed room with a cat door, so your kitty can enter the room but your dog can't
  • Keep the litter box as clean as you can. Scoop the litter box multiple times a day and try to keep the temptation down for your dog. Once he discovers the "treat" that's sometimes in the box, he'll be more likely to stalk it. If it's always clean, he'll lose interest over time.
  • Be sure your dog isn't bored. Dogs that are bored get into more trouble than those that aren't. Be sure you're giving your dog enough playtime. Also, consider a puzzle toy for him to work on, so he's less likely to go looking for a litter box treat.

You May Also Like These Articles:

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Keeping Your Dog Active While You're Away

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Dog Is Crushed That Owner Ate All the Food: VIDEO


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