When I heard the doggy door click-clacking yesterday, I rolled over in bed and blearily ascertained that it was indeed the middle of the night - well, 5:30 am is the middle of the night to me. So what was Penny doing going out at that hour, given that she is 'off-duty' at night and doesn't stir?
I threw on a layer of clothing and staggered out with a torch, to find her eating grass. And eating grass. And eating grass. Uh, oh! I remembered the ducks on the banks of the Yarra.
And I recalled how Penny had grazed that area, refusing to come when called - which is unusual. At the time it took me ages to realise she was eating the ducks' poo.
I met a local walking with his dog and he warned me not to let Penny eat duck poo, because it can spread botulism, and he said at all costs to avoid wombat poo because the wombats have a type of blood-borne mange that is incurable. Apart from comcern about Penny getting this mange, I feel sad if he's correct that most of the wombats around the Yarra Ranges have this mange.
I had a look on the net and came across an article that says even in wombats mange can be dealt with. Interestingly, it said that humans too are afflicted by one of the mange mites - but in humans we call it 'scabies'. It's not the same mite that affects dogs.
At any rate, Penny's night-time grass grazing worked its magic, and out came a nice greenish poo. There's no definite information around about why dogs eat grass, but this is one time when I feel sure the grass eating was because of an uncomfortable bowel.
Thank goodness she seemed fine in the morning!