Why is my dog eating dust bunnies?

Curiosity is the most common reason for dogs to eat dust bunnies around the house. However, there are also some less common reasons that should not be overlooked. Aside from curiosity, your dog may be seeking attention from you, lacking nutrition in their diet, or they may just enjoy the salty taste of the dust bunnies in your home. 

The first time you saw your dog lapping up a dust bunny from the corner of the room, you were probably wondering what was up with this odd behavior.

Your dog is curious by nature, and that curiosity can often lead to them taste-testing some odd things around your home. If there are spaces in your house where dust tends to pile up, your dog just might try out a dust bunny for his afternoon snack.


Why is my dog eating dust bunnies?

There are a few reasons for your dog eating the dust bunnies around your home. The reasons are usually harmless, but not always.

Curiosity

The main reason your dog may be eating dust bunnies is simply out of curiosity. This is especially true of younger dogs, who are known for trying to eat non-food items out of curiosity. Thankfully, trying out the dust bunnies living under the sofa isn’t especially dangerous.

It Tastes Good

While the thought of eating a big ball of dust might make you want to vomit, your precious pup might feel differently.

Do you know how some dogs enjoy licking your arm after a, particularly sweaty workout? That is due to the salt on your skin. And what is commonly found in most household dust? That’s right. Skin cells.

Your dog may be enjoying those dust bunnies for their subtle, salty taste. Or they could even be enjoying the fluffy feel of the dust on their tongue.

Attention-Seeking

Just like children, your little fur baby will sometimes misbehave just to get your attention. To see if this is true, ask yourself if there is a certain time of day when your dog usually eats dust bunnies.

Is it mostly when you are busy working or with the kids? If so, your dog could be doing this as a way to get you focused back on them.

Dietary Needs Not Being Met

The most serious reason that your dog may be eating dust bunnies is to fill a nutritional need in their diet. This deficiency could be anything from a low iron level to an electrolyte imbalance and can lead to a condition called Pica.

If your dog is eating other non-food items in addition to dust bunnies, it might be a good idea to talk to a veterinarian.

If your dog is showing any signs of illness or behavioral changes, you should consult with a veterinarian right away.


Is It Dangerous For My Dog To Eat Dust Bunnies?

Thankfully, eating dust bunnies is one of the safer non-food items for your dog to be indulging in. Dust is less dense than soil found outside, which is good news for your pup.

Because dust is less dense than soil, it is less likely to cause an intestinal blockage if eaten.

Household dust is also unlikely to contain anything harmful or poisonous. The only time that you should be concerned about your dog eating dust is it is dust from construction in your home. Sawdust and dust from drywall can build up in your dog’s intestines and cause a potential blockage.


How Do I Get My Dog To Stop Eating Dust Bunnies?

Get Rid Of Household Dust

Lucky for you, breaking your dog of his dust-eating habit is easier than you might think. The easiest way for you to get your dog to stop eating dust bunnies is to remove dust from all the areas your dog has access to.

This means getting under couches and into corners you may not frequent that often. If there are no dust bunnies to be found in your home, your dog will not be able to eat them.

Get Their Energy Out

Giving your dog more exercise and quality time with you can also help to curb their dust eating. This is especially true if they are munching on dust bunnies out of boredom or to get your attention.

Going for a long walk with your dog before or after work can be a great way to get their energy out and stop them from seeking dust bunnies out of boredom.

Consider Talking To Their Vet

If your dog continues to eat dust bunnies or begins eating other non-food items in place of dust bunnies, it is time to give the veterinarian a call.

While eating dust bunnies is usually a harmless bad habit for a dog to have, there is still a small chance that something else may be going on. This is especially true if you notice other signs and symptoms that your dog may be ill.

Remember that you are the one who knows your dog best. If your dog’s casual dust bunny eating doesn’t seem to be hurting him, they are probably fine. However, if they are beginning to eat more non-food items or show signs of illness, call their vet immediately.


In Conclusion

Your dog is most likely eating the dust bunnies around your home out of curiosity. If they are a puppy, this is usually the case. As they move out of the puppy stage, this weird habit may very well disappear.

Other reasons for your dog eating dust bunnies may include:

  • They enjoy the taste
  • Attention-seeking
  • Dietary needs not being met

While eating dust bunnies is a generally harmless habit for your dog, it is probably not something you are crazy about them doing.

The quickest way to help them kick their dust-eating habit is to frequently dust the areas that your dog has access to.

As always, use your best judgment when it comes to your dog’s health. While eating dust bunnies is usually harmless, any change in their health or behavior should be a cause for concern. When all else fails, consult with your dog’s veterinarian. 

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