Most dogs have the habit of putting weird things into their mouths. These items range from discarded food waste, grass to toilet paper. One of our dogs in the training center, Missy (Pomeranian), was a pro in ripping apart entire toilet rolls across the visitor’s room floor.
Canines have this annoying nature of tissue paper chewing and swallowing on many occasions. This behavior is not a silly thing to be ignored. Eating tissue paper can lead to severe medical conditions. So the next time you see your dog open the toilet door and munch on toilet paper, do not let it slide.
In this article, we will discuss the primary reasons why your canine buddy prefers consuming tissues/toilet paper rolls. The potential medical issues associated with this habit and methods to avoid this troublesome habit will also be explained.
These tissue-eating habits’ causal factors range from boredom, fun, taste, and many more. Let’s look at each one of the main ones below.
Why do dogs like to eat tissues?
Why dogs eat used tissues is down to a number of reasons. I believe the most common reason for dogs like tissue paper is due to instinct. Their ancestors would chase prey, pin it down with one paw, then tear it to shreds with the other before eating.
Tissue paper is great for playing this act out, as the texture and feel will appeal to dogs who still have that hunting instinct in them.
Here is that reason, plus some more on why your dog likes to eat used tissues. You might find that one of these applies to the dog in your life!
Your puppy is in the teething phase
Chewing is something more commonly associated with puppies, and they like to eat non-food items to help soothe their sore gums and teeth. Typically the teething process will last no longer than 30 weeks of age – here’s a breakdown of what to expect.
If you have a wastepaper basket on floor level within easy reach of a puppy, then getting to those tissues is easy. Dogs will hook them out and then start eating the used tissues due to how it feels on their gums.
To reduce the chewing of inanimate objects other than food you should have a supply of decent puppy teething toys (view on Amazon) to keep them occupied and away from all that snotty tissue.
If you take your dog to vet about them liking to eat tissue, they might diagnose your dog with the pica condition. Pica affects dogs and humans, and is described as being:
From my own research into pica, it’s a very common reasons for a dog and tissue paper consumption, and is said to be brought on by the following issues:
If pica is diagnosed, then it’s not that easy to stop a dog eating tissue paper, particularly if you are unable to figure out what the cause is. It can be a wide range of issue, including:
As you can see, there’s a lot of reasons why it could be happening, so is best checked over by your vet for a professional analysis.
Why Is Eating Tissues Dangerous for Dogs?
Consumption of tissues once in a while is not dangerous as they will take the form of a moist pellet and get digested in the dog’s stomach. But regular eating of tissue papers can cause serious harm, including vomiting and diarrhea to start with.
Irrespective of the quantity consumed, get the issue checked out with a vet to understand the severity of the problem and come up with a safe and quick resolution.
This behavior also comes with a set of possible side effects. Based on our experience at the dog training center, we have listed the following ones:
All these symptoms pinpoint damage in your dog’s intestinal region, also known as Gastrointestinal block. This condition can lead to severe pain in your dog’s lower belly area. More often than not, surgery would be necessary to remove the blockage. Any paper-like materials, including paper towels, newspapers, tampons, etc., can act as culprits in this case.
Now that we know how serious the issue is, let us focus on coming up with measures to curb/eliminate this unwanted canine habit.
What happens if a dog eats one tissue?
Is it bad for dogs to eat tissues?