Do Rats Like Dog Poop?

This is a question that will often have experts offering different answers around whether or not rats actually like dog poop, and in some cases whether people not picking up after their dogs will actually attract rats. One of the interesting parts of a dog’s biology, although not necessarily one of the most attractive, is the fact that the dog’s digestive system does not always process all of the food that the dog will eat, and there are still some nutrients to be found in the dog waste. This topic is particularly an issue, as there have been several cases of city and county municipal authorities starting to issue fines to dog owners for not picking up the poop, on the premise that this actually attracts rats.

Why Would Rats Eat Dog Poop?

Anyone who has actually had a dog of their own will know that one of the least attractive habits of some dogs is that they will sniff around another dog’s poop, and in some cases eat it if they aren’t stopped by their owners. There have been some studies carried out, and one of the reasons is that a dog’s digestive system will not process all of the iron, vitamins and minerals in the first processing of their food. This is why rats may eat dog poop, as there are still some nutrients to be found in the feces, and if they do eat this poop then it can be a source of some types of nutrients.

Is Dog Poop A Favorite For Rats?

This is a difficult question to answer, as there have been no definitive studies showing that rats prefer dog poop over other food sources, with various sources providing different claims. The question is likely to be more relevant is whether or not rats will eat dog poop if there are limited other options available, and the answer to this is likely to be yes. However, like any other animal species rats will need to secure a varied diet in order to remain healthy, and are unlikely to be able to get all of their nutritional needs from dog poop.

The Importance Of Picking Up Dog Poop

The practice of fining dog owners who do not pick up their dog’s poop in urban and suburban areas is fairly widespread, although the claims that this is because the poop attracts rats may not have too much evidence to support it. It is however important that dog poop should be picked up, as there are a number of health problems that dog poop can cause, and especially in parks and open areas where people walk and cycle it is fairly easy to come into contact with the feces. Dog poop will have a lot of bacteria, and these can cause diarrhea, kidney diseases and a number of other issues for those who come into contact with these bacteria.

Dealing With A Rat Problem

If you do have a rat problem, then there is no doubt that one way to help reduce the issue will be to deal with potential food sources, and this can include making sure there is minimum availability of dog poop in your area. This should however be carried out in tandem with dealing with other potential food sources, such as putting garbage into sturdy cans that can’t be nibbled through, and ensuring pet food stores are in solid sealed containers. It is also worth laying traps to try and catch the rats where possible, and these should be placed in areas where there are signs of rat activity, and should be checked regularly so that any fresh rat carcasses can be disposed of.

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