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In this lesson, we'll be covering diarrhea in your cats and dogs, coming right on the heels of dog and cat vomiting, which are pretty commonly seen in combination. At the end of this lesson, we'll provide you with a Word about why dogs eat grass.

Diarrhea is another common problem in both cats and dogs, and as mentioned above, can be accompanied with vomiting or exist all by itself.

If your pet is otherwise acting normal, feeling and behaving normally, and has normal vital signs, you can watch the diarrhea situation more closely for a day or two and see if it goes away on its own.

However, if your pet's diarrhea persists beyond two days, you should make an appointment to see your vet as this could indicate a bigger problem.

Pro Tip: Pet diarrhea is common. Bloody stools are not. If your pet's diarrhea has any blood in it – whether bright red or dark red – this should warrant an immediate trip to your veterinarian.

Warning: Also worth mentioning – if your pet develops a severe case of bloody diarrhea suddenly, this could be a life-threatening situation, and immediate veterinary care should be sought.

A Word About Why Dogs Eat Grass

Pet expert Cara Armour tackles an age-old question in a recent blog article for ProPetHero that we all have likely considered at one time or another: Why Do Dogs Eat Grass?

Unlike cows (who have four stomachs), humans and dogs don't have the same ability to digest grass. We can still eat it; nothing is stopping us or them from doing that. But we're just not able to use it in any practical way, as in digesting it or extracting nutrients from it.

3 Most Common Reasons Why Dogs Eat Grass

There are numerous reasons why dogs might choose to eat grass, so don't consider this list to be the final word on the subject. However, these are three reasons you may run into at some point.

  1. Your dog simply likes the taste of grass.
  2. Your dog's body needs a little extra fiber.
  3. Your dog has an upset stomach and eating grass is a sort of reflex action.

Number three is highly debatable, though it makes sense that dogs are simply following a million years of intuition and evolution and can sense when their digestion is a bit off. If eating grass helps them expel whatever is bothering them more quickly, why not eat grass? Then again, look at number one! Your dog may just like the taste.

Whatever the reason for their new grass-eating habit, the big takeaway is that it's probably not a big deal either way. However, this does come with a big but.

When to be Concerned About Your Dog's Grass Eating

If your dog suddenly starts chowing down grass like Popeye at an all-you-can-eat spinach convention, this could be a sign that there is more going on, like digestive problems or behavioral problems.

Also, it's important to know what kind of grass your dog is eating, and we don't mean the type. If you or your neighbors are using fertilizers or pesticides and your dog is eating from that grass, that's obviously problematic.

Always be aware of all of your dog's eating habits, including the occasional grass munching, especially if those habits lead to vomiting and diarrhea. Remember, knowing what's normal is how you'll also know what's not normal, or when to consider a situation worth investigating further. Then simply act appropriately and put to good use all the stuff you're learning in this course.