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Do pigs eat feces?


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Answered 2016-11-09 20:52:05

Pigs will only eat their own faeces if given ABSOLUTELY NOTHING ELSE to eat. They're very intelligent animals and now the difference between faeces and food. They are often thought of as 'unclean' (and hence some religions ban the eating of pork) because they like to roll in mud which the naive take as being 'dirty'. This is in fact to keep cool in hot weather as they have no sweat glands. When they are absolutely starving they will eat their faeces rather than starve to death.

Whether you can and whether its good for you are two totally different issues.

Coprophagia is very common in the animal kingdom - gorillas and rabbits just as a for instance If rabbits did not eat everything twice, they would not be able to eat enough to survive - digesting everything twice is essential to them. This is not the case in humans and human faeces are largely devoid of nutritionally beneficial material.

It is believed that if you'll only be eating your own faeces, there is no problem, since you're only eating bacteria you already have, and if you do have a disease, it is too late anyway. But even with this theory there is a flaw. Most of the bacteria in faeces come from the large intestine, and while they are not always strictly confined to this portion of the gut, overgrowth in other parts of the gut and anywhere else in the body CAN cause disease.

In addition to the bacteria and parasites, faeces contain waste matter which, in their original form or metabolized form (after being acted upon by bacteria), are certainly not useful to the body and may be harmful.

Coprophagia is also associated with psychological disorders such as Obsessive Compulsive Disorder.

This is also observed as a defense mechanism against predators in the wild. In the wild, if you poo where you sleep, the bears and wolves find and eat YOU. Adult pigs know better, and defecate on the opposite side of their pen from where they eat and sleep. Piglets don't know better, and since Mom and Dad don't have hands and pooper-scoopers to move the feces, they eat it and eventually it gets to the other side of the pen where it belongs.

Wolves are known to do the same thing in their dens.
Yes it's natural don't discourage this behavior.

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