If you have noticed your Rottweiler eating dirt, you might be wondering why and what you should do about it.

This post will show you a number of possible reasons why your Rottweiler has been doing it and what you can do to get it to stop.

So, why does my Rottweiler eat dirt?

The cause could include boredom, trying to satisfy nutritional deficiencies, to soothe an upset stomach, it smells food there, it likes the taste, an inherited trait or stress.

If your Rottweiler has been doing it regularly over a prolonged period then take it to the vet to make sure nothing is wrong.

And, how to stop my Rottweiler from eating dirt?

Possible things that you can do is to make sure your Rottweiler gets lots of exercise, has a good diet, has other things to chew, is trained to come to you when you call it, and you can reduce the access that it has to dirt.  

There are actually a number of reasons why your Rottweiler might be doing it and it could be the result of a combination of reasons. However, there are a number of things you can do to get it to stop.

Why Your Rottweiler Is Eating Dirt

Each of the different reasons why it has been doing it will likely come with some clues. Below are a number of possible causes and what would make them more likely to be the main reason.

Boredom

Rottweilers are a breed that should get daily exercise. If they do not get enough exercise, it can cause them to behave unusually and it might be why yours sometimes eats dirt. This would be more likely if it does it more on days where it has not been able to get any exercise.

Generally, it is recommended for Rottweilers to get at least an hour of exercise per day as healthy adults.

Inherited trait

It is argued by some people that present-day dogs eat dogs because dogs would do it before they were domesticated. Before being domesticated, dogs would do it since they wouldn’t have been able to get food as easily so they would try to get some more nutrients from grass and dirt.

It could be that this is a trait that present-day dogs still have which is why they occasionally choose to eat dirt. This could be why wild dogs are often seen eating grass and dirt.

Nutrition

The cause could be that your Rottweiler is trying to make up for nutritional deficiencies in its diet. This would be more likely if it started doing it since a change in its diet.

If you’re unsure that your Rottweiler is getting the nutrients that it needs then you can read on nutritional guidelines at petswebmd here.

The good news is that this is not usually the case but you should still take a moment to make sure that you’re feeding it the right things.

It’s sick

One proposed reason that Rottweiler and other dogs eat dirt is that they do it to ease an upset stomach. One way this happens is because the dirt can cause it to be sick causing its stomach to feel better.

It would be more likely that illness is the cause if it has started doing it suddenly and if it has been showing other signs of being ill. In this case, the best option would be to take it to a vet.

It likes the taste

The cause could be that it likes the way it tastes. This would be more likely if it seems to do it at random times and if it does not show any other abnormal signs. In this case, it would help to give it training as mentioned below.

It smells food

It could also be the case that it does it because it smells food there. This would be more likely if it tends to eat dirt from the same spot where food has been previously.

Stress

Another cause could be that it’s a coping mechanism to put up with stress. If your Rottweiler recently had something happen that could be causing it to be stressed such as a change of environment, a change of owner or if one of your other dogs died then this could be the cause.

How to get your Rottweiler to stop eating dirt

Below are some things you can do to get your Rottweiler to eat dirt less.

Ensure it is getting the right diet

It might be the case that an issue with its diet has been contributing to it eating dirt. It would help to consult with your local vet about its diet when you see them next. You can also look here to see what you should and should not feed a dog.

Exercise

If the vet has confirmed that it is healthy, it would also help to make sure that it is able to get the right amount of daily exercise. Generally, it is recommended for them to get at least an hour of exercise per day.

Give It other things to chew on

It would also help to give it other things to chew on so that it is less likely to want to eat dirt. Other things to give it would include, chews, bones and toys.

Train it to come to you

It would also help to train it to come to you on command. By doing so, it should make it easier for you to get it to stop when you see that it is about to start eating dirt.

You can watch the video below for some tips on how to do it.

Take it to a vet

If you cannot figure out why it has been eating dirt, it has started doing it suddenly or it has been showing signs of being ill or injured, the best option would be to take it to a vet. By doing so, you should be able to rule out medical causes and to get expert advice tailored towards your particular Rottweiler.

Reduce its access to dirt

The other way that you can reduce how much dirt it eats is by reducing the access that it has to dirt. You could do this by fencing off the areas with dirt in your backyard or you could try walking it in different areas.

Things to consider

Below are some things to consider about your Rottweiler eating dirt.

Risks of eating dirt

Even though eating dirt is not something that will normally harm your Rottweiler, it is still something that could cause harm to it.

The dirt could contain poisons and pesticides which could be harmful. To prevent this from happening, try to avoid letting your Rottweiler be in areas where there are likely to be poisonous things for it to eat. You can also make sure that you don’t have any poisonous plants in your garden.

It’s not very unusual

It would help to consider if anything else changed when it first started doing it since it could be the case that there was an event that caused it to start.

If it started doing it suddenly, it would be more likely to be due to things such as a sudden. change in its diet, becoming ill or that it smelt food there.

What else happened when it first started doing it

It could be the case that there was an external cause for the dirt eating so it would help to consider what else happened when it first started doing it.

If it started doing it suddenly, it would make it more likely to be due to things such as becoming ill, stressed, a change in its diet or smelling food there.

When it tends to do it

It would also help to consider if there is a certain time that it tends to eat dirt. If there is, it could be the case that the timing has something to do with it.

For example, if it tends to do it in a location where there has been food, it would be more likely that it does it because it smells food there. Whereas, if it does it more before it has been fed, it could be the case that it does it because it is hungry.

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I created and currently manage Pet Dog Owner, the website you can go to when you have questions about your dog's behavior. It is my hope that you find Pet Dog Owner to be a helpful resource. It is also my hope that it will help you to improve your relationship with your dog. You can read more about me and my website here.