Why do animals eat poop?



Rabbits tend to eat cellulose-heavy food, and digest it in two passes. The first pass is wet, the second is dry.


Why!? Because cat shit is creamy like Brie! (Or so I hear…)

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I’ll keep that in mind the next time I have a puppy.

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My recently-deceased shepherd was an enthusiastic consumer of cat shit.

Didn’t know what was going on for a long time; all I knew was she would nose around in landscaping bark dust and gobble something.

Then she came across a pile right in the open and greedily scarfed it down.

No other poop – dogs, coyotes – appealed to her, although she carefully pissed on piles of coyote shit.

One of Kira’s trainers called the stuff “Kitty Broca.”

Don’t own a cat, eh? They only eat meat. Think what that would do to your digestive system.

I’m fond of the term “Catbox snackums”

Just caught Beth Shapiro’s Long Now SALT presentation, earlier this week, on the various difficulties one encounters in the process of bringing wooly mammoths back from extinction, wherein she mentioned one of the (smaller?) problems to overcome being that baby elephants eat their mother’s poo, to establish a healthy flora in their digestive tract. The flora that would be best for an Asian elephant, living in the tropics, might not be quite as effective for a mammoth, intended to live in much colder climates–yet we have no better means of gestating a new mammoth, than in the womb of an elephant.

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I never thought of the gut bacteria aspect of this. Interesting.

It’s how rabbits chew their cud while only having one stomach instead of having four like cows or some other ruminants. Not everything gets two passes, but some does, because it’s a way for them to get some kinds of nutrients.

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Yup, my labrador’s vet always refers to it as “Kitty Roca”. The way she explains it, cats are very incomplete digesters, and leave a lot of protein in their poop, which a dog with its sense of smell 200 odd times better than ours, smells. And to them, any kind of discernible protein smells just delicious.

I’m hoping my next dog isn’t into that shit.


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