why does poop smell?

j 1000+ pointsk 500+ pointsl 100+ pointsm 1+ points - Newb

Poopy Pants asks:

Why is poop so stinky? I mean... food doesnt smell like that, so why does poop? Also, why do some people's poop smell worse than others?

(((Poonurse: I thought about answering this question that it was due to bacteria in your stomach. And then I thought that when you are first born, you don't have that bacteria, which is why babies poop doesn't smell. And then I remembered that baby poop is just horrible. Do you have any insight?)))

---- Dave

Dear Poopy Pants,

You are right on about the bacteria. The bacteria inside of the feces is what makes them smell so bad. Specifically, the bacteria produce various compounds and gases that lead to the infamous smell of feces. Just in case you were wondering, you can get very sick by eating feces because it contains so many types of bacteria and other harmful substances such as parasites. So I wouldn't suggest adding poop to your diet any time soon.

Poop will vary in smell depending on the type of foods and drinks that you consume. Generally speaking, feces will smell worse if you consume foods or liquids with many artificial flavors or chemicals in them. The bad smell of feces will usually be reduced by eating more natural foods that do not contain any artificial flavors or chemicals. Also, the poop of meat eaters usually smells worse than that of vegans.

Incidently, I change about 10,000 diapers a day at work. The baby's first poop is called meconium. While tarry, black, sticky and yucky to look at, it does NOT STINK.

Please be advised that I am only a Poonurse. I am NOT a medical doctor. Any advice I give should be taken moderate skepticism. Please consult a REAL medical doctor if you feel you have a serious medical condition.

-- Poonurse

Poonurse is an RN with 25 years experience in labor and delivery. Her qualifications include seeing a lot of poop, and owning a computer. Also, she works in Michigan, which she calls the asshole of the universe, so that's another bit of credibility.

Got a question for her?

179 Comments on "why does poop smell?"

Turd Hugegrunt's picture

Poopy Pants:

You wonder that poop stinks when you say that "food doesn't smell like that."

Have you ever walked into a house where someone is boiling a big pot of turnip greens or mustard greens? Especially if they are boiling up some of the turnip roots with the greens?

Or how about boiled cabbage, cauliflower, or broccoli?

Ever smelled chitterlings (chitlins) stewing away atop a stove?

And then you wonder how come some folks' poop smells worse than others. Hey, why do some folks' homes smell worse than others? How come some folks' armpits smell worse than others?

Look, some folks are just plain stankier than other folks. And it usually has at least something to do with what they shove down their gullets. Like some people who eat a lotta garlic. Or some folks who drink a lotta alcohol. It comes outta their skin, and outta their asses, more stinky than say someone who eats nothing but white bread and peanut butter washed down with Mt. Dew Code Red.

Anyway, do a little experiment. Cook up a big pot of chitlins, another pot of turnip greens, with the root diced up, and some blackeyed peas and cornbread. If you can stand the smell of your house, sit down and eat copious amounts of this slop.

Now, go down to Mississippi next day, meet up with Big Wiper in a public restroom, have a good ol' shameless twin shittin' sittin', and compare the odor. I'll bet your poop smells a whole lot worse than his. That's because he eats a more reasonable diet of not so stanky foods, see?

Peace in the portal.

doniker's picture
j 1000+ points

Turd, your one hilarious mother !!!!

Turd Hugegrunt's picture

Thanks, Doniker.

By the way, did you check out Ms. Tina's ass pimple problem? Sounds like she could use some help if you're up her way, Don. After all, you have a lot of experience in the female hiney department.

But if it gets too gross ... oh, nevermind ... that's not a possibility with you, dude!

Anyway, when you get to pinchin' Tina's butt bumpies, squeeze a big, yellow puss pocket for me, Don. If she yelps, say, "That was for Turd Hugegrunt!" and keep on a squeezin'.

Peace on the Pimple Patch.

doniker's picture
j 1000+ points

to be honest, I used to bang this chick that had pimples all over her ass cheeks.
She wasn't a fat slob, either.
For the first few months she would only fuck me if I got on top and in a dark room.

One time we were out in the woods during the day. We were drinking and I did her doggie style and her ass was covered in zits and zit scars.
Naturally I still fucked her and did so for about a year after that.

Turd Hugegrunt's picture


Well, I would imagine that the scabs and the healed-over pock marks afforded you some traction to get a grip on those ass cheeks, huh?

Peace in the pocked pucker.

The Big Wiper's picture
PoopReport of the Year AwardComment Quality Moderatori 2000+ points

TH, you continue to be in rare form, my friend! With all the travelling I'm doing lately, it's great to check into the site and see what you've come up with at the end of the day. Too cool for school

Pulling My Pants Down For Peace, Plop and Posterity!

Turd Hugegrunt's picture


I hope your travels find you safe and warm this winter. I know how cold some of those roadhouse toilets can be! Please avoid the dreaded frost-bit tush.

And seems like we should be hearing lots of public poophouse anecdotes when you finally get some time to relate them to us. I've seen a few from you lately, but I know you've experienced way more than what you've told us so far.

Like, is Arkansas still studded with those nostalgic two-seater outhouses like when I was a kid down South? Had any emergency downloads where you had to pull off the road in a rush and spackle paint the potty after dining on mudbugs and jambalaya in one of those Cajun roadside crab houses?

So, anyway, stay safe on the road, and have a speedy and profitable return to Tupelo.

Peace at the Crossroad.

The Big Wiper's picture
PoopReport of the Year AwardComment Quality Moderatori 2000+ points

Haha! TH, my most recent poophouse anecdote of note was posted in my 'On The Throne, On The Phone' story on the Front Page earlier this week. Cell phone crapping at its best and a shameless shiftfest to boot. I think my willingness to use (clean) facilities and my general shamelessness put me in a position to experience these excretory episodes more than most.

As for the mudbugs, they are coming into season right about now and are mighty tasty in etouffe and other dishes in restaurants in South Louisiana and Mississippi. Had some served as a topping over snapper (please--no comments about our esteemed Canadian Pooper Friend!) at a national sales meeting weekend before last. It was to die for and made for a fantastic easy slider at the other end. So, no complaints about the effect of the spicey cuisine on the ole bowels down there. I've learned to handle it after all these years.

Keep those crazy cards and letters of yours coming, TH. You da man!

Pulling My Pants Down For Peace, Plop and Posterity!

chimmy chonga's picture

your poop stuff is realy sick why do you even have this web site????? huh????

Creepy internet stalker's picture

Courtney and Angelina -- thank you for posting your phone number. Now I can figure out where you live. I'll probably be stopping by this weekend....

Angelina's picture

hello buthoe! how are you?
sexy momma?

fglkfgrtf's picture


dookie dog's picture

Oh man! thank God for this site I'd be calling 911 everytime I cut a fart holymolly man I am a hypocrandic of the worse kind man, I really am.

k'in weird's picture

you are all very weird, very very weird, insane tiwsted weirdos, this awful english is due to the total astonishment I feel at finding such a bunch of weridos...

Bloated Elvis's picture

Dang man...there is nothing the king likes better than to see a hot honey pinching a big Tennessee loaf! Thank you, thank you very much.

Keeley's picture

Hey the stalker came to my house! I am OK
he said that becuase he thought it was wrong to
start making a caht room out of a poop box!
ha-ha-ha! I started luaghing, then he left.

The Shit Volcano's picture
Comment Quality Moderatorh 3000+ points


I found Jesus! He was behind the sofa the whole time!



who cares's picture

so wut if ur a tom-boy, not gonna do anything!

John's picture
m 1+ points - Newb

Well, When I take a dump the whole house smells like ass. It blows out with a furious force, like compressed gas. Braaaaappp! There is like this huge explosion in the toilet with brown dropplets on the sides of the inside of the toilet bowl. What does this mean?

Jay's picture

Everyone's ass smells,even if we do not defecate.My Cousins used to fart and then smell each other's asses.I don't smell people's asses!.

Íslenska Inga's picture

Krummi krunkar úti, kallar á nafna sinn;
"Ég fann höfuð af hrúti, hrygg og gæruskinn"
Komdu nú og kroppaðu með mér krummi nafni minn.
Komdu nú og kroppaðu með mér krummi nafni minn.

That was an Icelandic poopsong witch I wanted to share with you:)

Flush with pride.

The Shit Volcano's picture
Comment Quality Moderatorh 3000+ points

Translation? Please!

I found Jesus! He was behind the sofa the whole time!

HersheySquirt's picture

Why does some poop sink to the bottom of the bowl and some float to the top?

The Big Wiper's picture
PoopReport of the Year AwardComment Quality Moderatori 2000+ points

Density and fiber content. Fatty, greasy foods create poop that doesn't really hold together and floats. High fiber foods such as veggies and whole grains create a denser log.

Some of the classic easy sliders I've had that slithered nicely to the bottom had, for instance, such foods as red beans and rice, broccoli and sourdough bread at the front end.

Pulling My Pants Down For Peace, Plop and Posterity!

The Dumpster's picture
i 2000+ points

This site is much better moderated than it was two years ago.

Send all your money to Bilgepump, or to Dave!

brown snake playing peek a boo with my butthole's picture

i love the poopie. is it possible to pop blood vessles from straining so much?

Fart Poopie's picture
j 1000+ points

It's likely you will get hemorrhoids, yes.

healthy 1's picture
j 1000+ points

Very educational thread. First, I have learned that there are indeed some weirdo's who vist PR. PR is not a porn site, we are a "poop humor" site. (We also give some pretty damn advice, along with helping the public overcome the fear of poop and pooping.) We at PR give (or try to give) a better understanding to the public, that pooping is not dirty, it is natural. All mammals poop.

Second. I have learned that people do have a false belief that poop and pooping is bad. Why? It is totally natural, there is nothing wrong with pooping. It is what our creator intended, so there must be a reason.

Third. I think FP has mad some awesome comments in this thread. A healthy diet will indeed create denser poop (sometimes too dense for the toilet to handle.)

Lastly. Now to put a twist on this question. Why does some people's poop not smell when it is submerged in the water?
Jammin' lo'flo's since 1977.

"Two percent of the population think; three percent of the population think they think, and 95 percent of the population would rather die than think."

bowlfiller's picture
m 1+ points - Newb

Are we Born with the disgust for poop/smell of poop already buried in our genetics, or is it somthing that we learn?

Stool Pigeon's picture

After reading this horizon broadening site, I feel the need to make a correction. Feces floats when it has more fiber. If you eat things that are dense like meat and cheese without fiber, those are the stools that tend to sink like the titanic. Sorry to ruin your thoughts about eating greasy foods. The greasy foods can cause stomach and intestinal problems and can cause your gall bladder to go into overdrive. That is why cancer specialists suggest eating high fiber diets to keep your intestines clean. The grease also likes to line your veins and arteries until it chokes out your blood flow. To good poop & health.

GottaGoGirl's picture
i 2000+ points

I dunno. All I ate today was pancakes, beef jerky, coffee, and chile-spiced peanuts. Oh. And an ice-cream cone.

I just filled the bowl with floaters. How do you explain that?

Anonymous Coward's picture

GGG - Magic.

GottaGoGirl's picture
i 2000+ points

Oh. Well. That explains it, then.

BTW, I ate that diet that day because we were driving home from Nevada. The Cajon Pass was jammed, and all we had in the car was jerky and those spicy nuts.

When we finally got through, and back to some semblance of civilization, we celebrated with ice cream.

BTW/BTW, I left a deposit at the Stardust, which will only be open for 2 more weeks. Connection? Perhaps.

Blackhorse15_4eva's picture

why do babies have such smelly and vile bowel movements? its not like they ingest a whole lot of processed and artificial foods..perhaps its the milk?XP

GottaGoGirl's picture
i 2000+ points

Blackhorse- I theorize that babies' poop (once they're weaned) smells/looks equally vile as adult poop. If you had to clean smeared crap off of an adult butt, I bet the baby butt would seem far less gross.

Droppin' Da Kids at da Pool's picture

Hey - my ol' lady is fibre crazy - can't get enough - and her turds are always hangin' in the bowl - somedays I hafta piss-break them two or three times before they'll head off to New Jersey.

Me, well, I eat a balanced diet, get 5 servings of fruit/veg a day, some meat, some dairy, and, well, let me just say that when I drop the kids off at the pool, they go scuba diving. Not snorklers like the missus.

Do the Poo!

Anonymous blondie's picture

I have a question, I and a friend of mine where sitting around drinking coffee and I said" my shirt smells like ass!" and she said to me "What does ass smell like?" I told her that ass smells like when someone farts or that smell when you walk into a public bathroom and some has taken a really sinky poop. so what I want to know is what does ass really smell like if you could compare? you tell me .

fece frank's picture

I think i may have a problem. How often do u take a dump? Somtimes i find myself going 4, 5 times a day. Not to mention every time i go, afterwards i don't feel 100% done. I wonder if i have some parasite in me. Or sometimes when i go, very little comes out and it looks like someone spit in the toilet. Is that stomach acid?

not alone anymore's picture


armageddonpoopmeister's picture

I think the smelliest vegetable to add scent to poop I've noticed be a carrot. Due to the fact they loaded with bunches more natural salts & also a large amount of sugar. They're a root crop so they smell strong & earthier than poatoes (funny but potatoes will add bulk to poop but not a smell) & yet flowery. If you ate a meal of carrots exclusively this smells more & carries farther. = If at end of world when dogs hunt you all for those concentration FEMA camps try to not eat a whole can of carrots. Plan to mix the carrots even with a can of peas or something.

fartqueen's picture
m 1+ points - Newb

come to my house once,my man has the smellest farts and poop!It smells like dead nightcrawlers!I wonder why that is?Maybe he eats worm sandwiches for lunch.._______

angelina's picture

hm i just wanted to know if courney and keeley ever still went on here....i miss you guys! look up at the dates from when we talked on here a long time ago till the date i just posted this..man its been a long time and we have grown soo much...i love u two!

Poop-phobic's picture

Okay so I do actually have a phobia of the word P.O.O i dont mind people saying poop, thats ok, but without that extra p, its the most disgusting word ever.

but when stumbling upon this site, I have worked through it, wretching at anyone saying the word without the extra p and yeah, i still absolutely hate it.

i'm sorry

i let the side down

Anonymous Coward's picture

Is there a difference in smell between male and female poop? Do hormones factor in?

poo boy's picture

I just dont get it if food dosnt smell that way
[thank u god]than y does poop smell so bad????

daphne's picture
PoopReport of the Year AwardSite AdminComment Content ModeratorComment Quality Moderatore 6000+ points

Because, poo boy, poop is more than just digested food. It's mostly water, first off, and besides leftover food, poop has cellular waste in it. All these things combine to make a bad smell.

Happy Thanksgiving! May your poop smell like turkey instead.....

.....hugging bunnies since 1969

.....hugging bunnies since 1969

mrs. toilet's picture

helpful hint.

when you sprinkle while you tinkle be a sweetie wipe the seatie (:

holy mother of shite's picture

I totally agree with the nurse, i am doing my midwifery training and i have two girls and i breastfed them, their poo smelt like digestive biscuts but as soon as i put them on solids, holy crap their nappies were bad, hats off to anyone who can have a job cleaning the throne other than your own, but im a girl and i love to have a nice crap even when my hubby is having a shower or when im in the bath he pops in to offload, it all part of the bonding process, even when i does smell!!!!!!
happy crapping to you all.

That guy looking through your window.'s picture

This is truly very brown.

youcanstalkme's picture

lol you guys are too funny. Its gross...but its funny lmao.

King Shit of Turd's Island's picture

Indole, skatole, mercaptans, and hydrogen sulfide are the chemicles that give dookie it's unique scent.

That being said, There's something about a nice Reuben sandwich with loads of sour krout...or really any cabbage in general seems to turn into pure methane in my gut.

Anonymous Person's picture

Sometimes when I don't wipe, my ass hole gets really itchy - why does this happen?? Is it a rash of some sort? It reminds me of dane cook's 'itchy assholes' sketch! lol.

sittingpretty's picture
Comment Quality Moderatori 2000+ points

AnonPerson, your ass itches because it has ass-eating shit on it. The acid and bile salts in the poop breaks down the epidermis and viola! A raw itchy stinky ass. Do yourself and the world a favor and wipe your ass after you chuck a chunder. If you don't know how, here is how: 1. wipe with dry TP front to back until the chunky chunder is off. 2. wipe with wetwipe from the back- around,
over and in anus. Stick your wetwipe wrapped middle finger just past the external sphincter and gently spread the little ass wrinkles to get it all out. Then wipe front to back using same method. (If female don't touch the hhhahhmm with any crap napkins.)3. wipe again with dry tp. Also get some Acid Mantle cream and apply to the irritated area after each cleaning. I hope this helps you. Huggies green tea and cucumber wipes are soft and smell good(not baby smell). Scott 1000 sheet single ply leaves no butt dust and flushes well.

I think shit smell and its accompaniment of bells and whistles is a primitive inborn alarm system. It was the caveman warning to steer clear of the unseen squatter in action. The smell is the warning to not step or sit in shit.

...And their flesh like dung. Zeph. 1:17

baron von crapalot's picture
k 500+ points

No No No No, your shit doesn't smell, your nose does that for you. Your shit stinks, your nose smells.... Duh!

like a constipated accountant- I worked it out with a pencil.

I hope to god I've just sat in a Shepard's pie.

prarie doggin's picture
PoopReport of the Year AwardComment Quality Moderatorg 4000+ points

BVC, my poop indeed does smell. It also speaks, and if requested, does a mean soft shoe.

Anonymous Coward's picture

my poop smells like bad mince meat on a dead body. Sickly sweet- but sourly putrid. Should i be worried?

Bilgepump's picture
Comment Quality Moderatorh 3000+ points

Heaven's no, no need to worry. Its far too late for that, you are far better served enjoying your last few minutes on earth.

"One of the founding members of the Front Page Hyena Pack, and runs as its alpha male when the urge strikes him, which is often." Daphne (one perceptive chick)

Anonymous Coward's picture

I am a caucasian Englishman who has lived and worked in Africa for many years and, although I eat and drink exactly the same as the Africans, there is absolutely no question that their poop smells a great deal worse than mine. The question is why?

ChiefThunderbutt's picture
PoopReport of the Year AwardComment Content ModeratorComment Quality Moderatorf 5000+ points

PD..........You seem to have very talented shit. I dearly love a good soft-shoe performance. My shit is more inclined to do tribal dances with tom-tom accompaniment while the onlookers shout
hey-ya, hey-ya, hey-ya.

I tried to teach one of my turds to break-dance but it's mad twirling slung corn kernels everywhere and we were both banned from Taco Bell forever.

My shit, by the way, does not stink, it reeks.

Eat chilies and feel the burn!!

How long a minute is depends on what side of the bathroom door you're on!

Anonymous Coward's picture

someone changes 10,000 diapers a day? thats over 416 per hour, almost 7 a minute!

i dont believe that persons answers anymore with numbers like that. though, this is my first time, and last time at this site. bye!

Hayley's picture

I am a female and I usually poop twice a day. Shit just plain smells bad no matter who you are or what you eat or drink. No one's ass smells like a bed of roses. Mine sure doesn't.

baron von crapalot's picture
k 500+ points

Hayley, this site is for peoople who enjoy a bit of poop humour, NOT for flagrant liars such as yourself.

I mean, fancy coming on here and trying to convince everyone that you are a girl of the opposite sex and poop!!!!????


Did I just fart?.... Oh shit! NO!!

I hope to god I've just sat in a Shepard's pie.

prarie doggin's picture
PoopReport of the Year AwardComment Quality Moderatorg 4000+ points

So BVC, if they don't poop then please explain
(in mathmatical terms) the existance of the second hole.

baron von crapalot's picture
k 500+ points

oh, okay,

As we have learnt from previous posts that have referred to poop at a physical, mathematical and even a quantum level, there are many things whose very existence can be explained by one, or more of theses 3 schools of thought.

We know for instance that we can get something from nothing, with the help of quantum mechanics, or that we can, through the application of both physics and mathematics, quantify the amount of splash-back any one turd would produce.

So, onto the 'second hole'.

There are two theories regarding its existence, the first and simplest, is likened to the existence of our coccyx, a 'throw back' if you like, to a point in our evolution when we had/needed a tail.

The Female Anus (or Anus girlius) to my mind is a function of the size of the female mouth verses the size of the female lung thus:

T= time (seconds)
L= lung capacity (cubic lutes)
Md= mouth diameter
RAdMax= required anal diameter at its maximum.
Vmax=oral max throughput


D=desired throughput.= ((22/7)/pi)

This is very simple, should Vmax>D then RadMax has a theoretical value of zero, so, we need to find Vmax. Hence:


if, for instance Vmax is found to have a value of 11 and RadMax has a value of 10.9, then the amount of shit diverted away from the female mouth and to the starfish has a value of zero.

Throughout evolution, the female of the species has learnt to develop Md to the point that the starfish is no longer of any use, as 100% of female excreta is vacated via the mouth, so leaving the 'second hole' redundant.

There have been some suggestions in higher circles, that this extra orifice could actually be used as a 'spare tampon' holder, for those times when a lady (of the opposite sex) gets caught short in the menstrual department (thats just left of the sporting goods department).

Hope I have been of some help.

(god I'm gonna get it in the ear for this one!)

Did I just fart?.... Oh shit! NO!!

I hope to god I've just sat in a Shepard's pie.

prarie doggin's picture
PoopReport of the Year AwardComment Quality Moderatorg 4000+ points

Bilge, LJ, Chief, Art. I'm making a large batch of popcorn for this one. Any drink preferences? I've also taken the liberty of securing some ponchos (ala Seaworld) for those of you in the front row. It could get messy.

Bilgepump's picture
Comment Quality Moderatorh 3000+ points

We're gonna need a case of Starburst for Daphne as well...she's gonna need the energy. Wedgie, I'm sure, is gearing up, and Di...well....poor BVC...nice knowing ya.

The proper order is kiss me, then go smell the other dog or cat's butt. I cannot stress this enough.

"One of the founding members of the Front Page Hyena Pack, and runs as its alpha male when the urge strikes him, which is often." Daphne (one perceptive chick)

ChiefThunderbutt's picture
PoopReport of the Year AwardComment Content ModeratorComment Quality Moderatorf 5000+ points

BVC..........You are the consummate mathematician. The only equation I can remember is the one that says;

The angle of the dangle times the mass of the ass equals the heat of the meat.

PD.......make mine a gin and tonic,

Eat chilies and feel the burn!!

How long a minute is depends on what side of the bathroom door you're on!

prarie doggin's picture
PoopReport of the Year AwardComment Quality Moderatorg 4000+ points

Chief, don't forget to divide by the cube of the pube.

Bombay Sapphire ok?

ChiefThunderbutt's picture
PoopReport of the Year AwardComment Content ModeratorComment Quality Moderatorf 5000+ points

PD....Cube of the pube it is. Don't waste money on Bombay Sapphire, I will drink almost anything. I usually get the generic that comes in five gallon
plastic buckets.

Eat chilies and feel the burn!!

How long a minute is depends on what side of the bathroom door you're on!