Your puppy comes home, and she begins to look around your house and explore. She begins stumbling over herself, and grabbing onto anything she can find. At first, this seems to just be the stages of having a puppy, but as this continues on, you start to notice that there is something more to this. Your dog wants to chew and eat certain items such as the objects she finds outside, or even things in the house, that would never be used for food. Although this odd behavior is something that looks silly, it does shed light on her state of mind. Your dog’s body wants something and she is going to do whatever she can to find it, even if it means eating an item like soap. Dogs may tend to chew unhealthy objects, at times, and when they do, something about their wellbeing will be understood.
The Root of the Behavior
Everybody needs certain nutrients to thrive and survive. As humans, it can be easy to neglect that, but with dogs, it is a bit harder. Their bodies know what they need and they can smell the nutrients they are not getting in the items that surround them everyday. For them, it does not matter if those nutrients lie in a bar of soap, or even something that is far more poisonous, like Advil. Soap contains certain nutrients that are prominent to a dog’s meal plan, so their bodies are fulfilled to the strongest point they can be at. Soap contains solid fats and oils that humans and animals need in their food, but overdoing the amount necessary should not occur. If your dog is eating soap, it is important to get it away from them, and re-evaluate their dietary needs. Some soaps may contain toxins that can be harmful for animals, as well. Soap is not as poisonous as something like Advil, but it may be best to keep soap away from your dog, as well as any other objects that do not serve the health of your animal. Depending on the age of your pet, eating soap may fall along the lines of something a bit different. If you have a puppy, they may be eating soap because it is an object they are choosing to teethe on. Puppies will usually chew on anything they can get their hands on that they love to smell or taste. In other cases that seem to be more rare, your dog could potentially have a behavioral problem at hand. The most common one is called PICA. This is a disorder where dogs tend to chew and eat things that are not food such as soap, dirt, or even hard things like rocks. If you sense that your dog may have this issue, you may want to re-evaluate the health of your animal with your veterinarian.
Encouraging the Behavior
It is important to know that soap does contain toxins that may be harmful for your pet, depending on what type of soap you use. Yet, most soap is not that harmful to your animal, unless they eat large amounts of it. It is wise to be safe and only allow your animal to get ahold of things that are healthy and necessary. Most owners are aware of this when their dogs are puppies, but if something feels out of order with your dog, it could be extremely important to check out their health. If your dog is interested in eating soap, you do not want to encourage the behavior. It could be wise to teach your dog the correct things to chew on and eat, so they may stay in proper health. Showing your animal their toys and food items of choice over soap and training them as you do when you potty train your animal can be monumental, so they may understand what is allowed and what is good for them. Whenever your animal is acting in a certain way or getting into things, there is always a reason. If you feel it may be helpful, getting your animal checked for evaluation could help you in finding the answer.
Other Solutions and Considerations
If you have objects within your house that have an appealing smell or taste, your animal may want to chew on them or even eat them. Animals react and are drawn to any smell that their body enjoys, and sometimes, the smell echoes that of nutrients they need. Other times, it is for the simple pleasure of exploring. If you have a dog that is interested in eating or playing with soap, you may want to watch and see their interaction. This re-evaluation can help you explore the many potential causes of why they desire soap, whether that be nutrients, exploration, or a disorder that needs veterinarian help.
Animals love to play and get into things from the time they are a puppy to the time they are a full grown adult; yet, this unhealthy find through exploration may limit their exuberant behavior. Watching, training, and keeping your dog healthy is important so they may live long and happy lives.
By a Shiba Inu lover Patty Oelze
Published: 02/07/2018, edited: 01/30/2020