If you’re fed up with clearing up after your dog and don’t know why it’s happening, here are 7 reasons for a dog urinating in the house. Once you discover the root cause of your own dogs problem, you’ll be in a position to start sorting it out.
Some dogs will go to great lengths to get your attention when they want it. In fact attention seeking behaviour is quite common amongst dogs, it’s just that a lot of the time you don’t really notice it. If your dog brings you their toys without you asking, then they are doing it to get your attention.
Often we don’t mind, or don’t even notice it because it is so subtle, like gently leaning against you until you stroke them. However, they can also be a lot more direct about wanting your attention and use behaviour like jumping up at you. Even behaviour that gets them into trouble will be used time after time as long as it works. After all, even if you are cross and shouting at them, they still have your attention.
One of the biggest reasons for a dog urinating in the house is separation anxiety. Generally, they will only do it when they are left on their own or when you go out. Even 10 minutes alone is difficult for some anxious dogs to cope with.
Separation anxiety is often linked to a dog taking on the role of pack leader, but being unable to cope with the responsibility for keeping the rest of the pack safe. In this case, because they are anxious about where you are and whether you are going to come back they will instinctively start scent marking in the house. The idea behind it is to give you a scent trail to help you find your way back home, but the problem is that your dog doesn’t know that your sense of smell is not as good as theirs!
If you want to know more about dog separation anxiety read this article or access an exclusive video created by a professional dog trainer by entering your name and email in box at the top right of the page.
Could the reason be connected to your dog’s age, because both young pup and old dogs are affected in different ways? If you’ve got a puppy, they might not have quite mastered house training yet, while at the other end of the age scale, an old dog might be suffering from a bit of incontinence.
The length of time a dog can go before needing to urinate will vary enormously according to age, size and breed, so the reason for the problem could be a simple timing issue. Perhaps you miss the signs of your dog needing to be let out, or maybe they are not very good at letting you know.
Could the problem be connected to your dog’s health? If you have any concerns about their health consult with your vet. The reason could be something as simple as a urinary tract infection, which your vet could prescribe a course of antibiotics for.
Dogs need to know who is the Pack Leader and will use all sorts of behaviour to try and work out who should be top dog. When a dog marks an area their status can be detected through the pheromones in the urine so they do it partly to make a statement. It is also a way of claiming a territory as their own and sends out messages to other dogs that they are prepared to defend it.
If they are urinating in front of you in the house, or where you can see them do it, it could be a direct challenge to your status, which should be as leader of the pack.
Ironically, urinating can also be a way of a dog showing submission. This may happen because as I mentioned earlier, the status of a dog is detected through pheromones in the urine. Very nervous dogs will often urinate when approached by other dogs, and can even do it when you call them because they think they’re in trouble or are so scared that they need to show they are not a threat to you.
Many of the reasons for the urination problems have straightforward answers. Visit you vet if you think it is health related, change how often you let your dog out if it’s a timing issue, and deal with behaviour issues with a positive training programme.