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Thread: Puppy has pica?

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    Puppy (New Member) Sami's Nana's Avatar

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    Default Puppy has pica?

    We are new Pyr owners and are dismayed by Sami's insistance on chewing/eating bark off trees, moldy grass clippings, leaves and twigs of shrubs. When I googled, it seems to be a condition known as "pica". I was wondering if anyone here has had this problem and what helped with their pup.

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    Old Dawg (Senior Member) SebastiansMom's Avatar

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    Welcome to the forum!

    How old is Sami, and when is the last time Sami saw the vet?

    It is normal for puppies to explore the world with their mouths to an extent, but I would be very vigilant with Sami around plants - and especially moldy grass clippings. Some common backyard plants can be toxic to dogs. Effects can range from mild tummy upset to neurological problems and even death. The ASPCA has a great guide to toxic plants here:
    https://www.aspca.org/pet-care/anima...n-toxic-plants

    Now, if it seems like Samiís fondness for eating plants is more of an obsession than basic exploration, I would make an appointment to see your vet. My Sebastian has intermittent bouts of pica stemming from a GI issue. After several trips to the emergency vet, our regular vet gave me what I needed to treat him at home - with the understanding that if he didnít respond to home treatment, we would go to the emergency vet ASAP.
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    Old Dawg (Senior Member) Jewel's Avatar

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    I gather from your pics that Sami is still a very young pup? It is pretty common for pups to eat all sorts of crap, literally, crap. I suppose it may technically be pica, but it's something that is not unusual for young pups. Not unlike human babies, everything is new to them and so they put everything in their mouth.

    My Bro was like that when he was a tiny pup. Practically in every picture of him as a pup he was eating something. I even got him a muzzle because he would be eating the whole way when I took him out for a walk. He hated that muzzle. I used it couple of times and gave up. I just did my best to pull him away from eating stuff. Eventually he grew out of it.

    When Bijou was a pup, she ate an entire potted mini-rose plant. Thorns and all. She did it over a period of time.

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    Puppy (New Member) Sami's Nana's Avatar

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    Sami is 14 wks old now, but he has been doing this since 8 wks. I had not mentioned it to our vet in previous visits because he was just chewing grass, sticks,and trying to eat pebbles because silly me thought it was just being a puppy. Now that he is pulling leaves and branches off shrubs in the yard, trying to eat cardboard and anything else he can find, I looked up and found that it could be a serious problem. His next vet visit is in 3 wks. So far, he has no symptoms of tummy problems.

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    Puppy (New Member) Sami's Nana's Avatar

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    Thanks to all of you for your comments. I am checking the toxic plant list as we speak.

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    Old Dawg (Senior Member) Zech's Mom's Avatar

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    Sami's nana HI My boy zech is about 18 weeks and He has done that since puppyhood but way way less as we got him on foods that are better, the puppy chow and then avoderm recommended, he would eat dirt stones wood poop paper towels ... We have it down to he likes wood and sticks now.... we still are looking for a better food, he's not really interested in the taste of the wild we have

    but even just today on our walkies, a yard in the neighborhood had their grass aeriated and there were little dirt plugs up everywhere... OMGOSH you'd have thought that was an all you can eat treat buffet for Zech.. Puppyhood is a fun adventure for sure! welcome and once your vet rules out anything wrong.... welcome to the forum and also the "what is that in your mouth?" phase LOL

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    Old Dawg (Senior Member) SebastiansMom's Avatar

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    From what you describe, Sami’s behavior sounds like normal puppy behavior. However, things can sometimes get lost in translation. Without being there to see it, it’s hard to say for sure.

    Here is a thread that I started last year about Sebastian’s pica attacks. I posted links to video I got of him during an episode so that people could see the signs of distress that he was showing. In the videos, he was literally eating hair from the carpet (ewwwwww).

    http://www.greatpyr.com/forum/showth...-episode/page3

    If you have any doubt about whether or not Sami’s behavior is normal, I would strongly recommend setting up an appointment with your vet before your next scheduled one.

    Also, I would supervise Sami in the yard and try to redirect with a toy or treat when you see puppy mischief. I know - easier said than done!
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    Old Dawg (Senior Member) Zech's Mom's Avatar

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    Quote Originally Posted by SebastiansMom View Post
    From what you describe, Samiís behavior sounds like normal puppy behavior. However, things can sometimes get lost in translation. Without being there to see it, itís hard to say for sure.

    Here is a thread that I started last year about Sebastianís pica attacks. I posted links to video I got of him during an episode so that people could see the signs of distress that he was showing. In the videos, he was literally eating hair from the carpet (ewwwwww).

    http://www.greatpyr.com/forum/showth...-episode/page3

    If you have any doubt about whether or not Samiís behavior is normal, I would strongly recommend setting up an appointment with your vet before your next scheduled one.

    Also, I would supervise Sami in the yard and try to redirect with a toy or treat when you see puppy mischief. I know - easier said than done!
    WOW that is serious distress I'd have rushed to the vet thinking Bloat Too Sebastians mom, That pica is way different than the way zech would sample everything, Awful to watch him do that. though I have to say that picture of sebastian and the cookie jar..... priceless

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    Old Dawg (Senior Member) Christi's Avatar

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    Apollo ate rocks, twigs, leaves and grass. I think its part of puppyhood. As he was a parvo survivor he was at the vet a lot. They said this is what puppies do. At 3 he still likes to eat wood, namely off the peach and pear trees. He would be eating the apple but he killed that one last year. Now the food, As a pup it was really hard to find food that he liked, after the parvo he was horrifically under weight, and he didn't like the low GI food he was supposed to be eating. So I went to a locally owned pet store and got puppy and adult food samples and offered those till I found one he liked. Even now I have to work to keep him interested in foods. Here is what I have learned, he gets bored with one flavor, so I change that up. He gets bored with one brand so i have a few that i switch to. Now this took some time and mine are used to them all. I also cook for mine. I make a "stew" and I used the Halo recipe for Spot's Stew. I change up the protein, and some of the veg, depending on what is in season and what I can get from local farms. Rabbit, duck and lamb are the favorites at my house. They also like venison, chicken and turkey, but not as much. They get Kibbles in the morning, then in the evening they get a half ration of kibble and about a cup and a half of the stew. I make it in large batches and freeze it into portion sizes so its fast and easy. Sometimes I add eggs, yogurt, pumpkin or assorted veggies to kibbles as well. This way they are well rounded, and I have ease of mind they are getting proper nutrition. I will include the link to the spots stew recipe. This site includes the story behind it. Not everyone has the time nor inclination to cook for their dogs, but I find it rewarding. I will start it early in the morning and let it cook most of the day. I prefer to run it through my food processor because one of my dogs is not fond of veggies and will pick the meat out, and leave the veggies lol.

    https://www.petcha.com/dog-food-comp...s-stew-recipe/

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    Puppy (New Member) Sami's Nana's Avatar

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    Zech's Mom: I can totally relate! LOL

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