Why Does My Dog Do That?

Have you ever seen your dog do something that made you think Why is my dog doing that? Well, it turns out that most of your dog’s weird habits have a meaning! Here are five odd dog behaviors that have actual meaning.

  1. Chasing tails or “Whirling”

In almost every cartoon with a dog, you can find him chasing his tail at some point. It turns out that it does actually happen in real life and it has history. Some theorize that tail chasing is simply a form of play for young predator species. However, although cute and funny in their younger years, tail chasing in older dogs can actually be considered a behavioral issue and needs to be examined. This behavior could stem from a medical reason. Dogs will also chase their tails when they have intestinal parasites.Ways to combat this habit in older dogs is to get regular checkups and exercise your pup regularly.

  1. Dragging butt in the ground

While this habit is entertaining to watch, dogs dragging their butt may mean there is an issue with your pup’s rear end. This behavior could mean many different things, including a health problem. Basically, dogs have two glands in their butt that make their poop unique so that when they do their business, other dogs will know whose it is. If these glands get clogged and cannot empty correctly, this could cause extreme irritation which would lead to one itchy behind. If your dog is dragging their butt on the ground, it may be time for a trip to the vet!  

  1. Kicking up grass after pooping

When your dog takes forever to pick where to do their business, they are choosing where they want to mark their territory. Most of the time, dogs will find a place where a dog had previously urinated to show dominance to other dogs and to mark their territory now. This is similar to why dogs kick up grass after they poop. As we mentioned earlier, dogs have glands in the butt which releases a specific and unique odor that is affiliated with them. They also have these glands in their paws, which means that when they kick grass up after pooping, they are using an additional way to truly mark their territory. This shows other dogs that this space is not to be used.

  1. Turning in circles before lying down or “Trampling”

Believe it or not, there are actually several theories surrounding this odd behavior. Back in ancient times, dogs did not have access to the fluffy bedding that we provide them with today, therefore they would have to make their sleeping arrangements as comfortable as they could with what they had. One theory of this odd behavior suggests that this behavior was for safety reasons. By twirling around, dogs would be able to either move or scare away anything that was on the ground below them that could pose as a threat. This would include things like snakes, debris or bugs. Another theory of why dogs circle before they lay down is that dogs are trying to flatten down the area that they are about to lie on. This could be considered a sign to other dogs that this territory is claimed.

  1. Eating Poop

The scientific name for this habit is coprophagia and it comes from the fact that dogs evolved as scavengers, and therefore, will eat anything that gives them nutrients, including feces. In other words, dogs are predisposed to this because of their history of having to fend for themselves while living in nature. However, the historical background of dogs isn’t the only reason for this gross habit. Usually in younger dogs or puppies, eating poop is nothing to be concerned about as it is usually just them exploring the world around them. But, in older dogs, eating feces can be a sign of anxiety, isolation or attention seeking. There are many ways to stop your dogs from dining on feces including vitamin supplementation or taste aversion products.

Sources: LiveScience, Puppy Up, Found Animals, Red Barn Inc, Pets Web MD, Wonderopolis

Sources: LiveScience, Puppy Up, Found Animals, Red Barn Inc, Pets Web MD, Wonderopolis