Have you ever seen your dog kick their hind legs after they have done their business? It looks pretty funny when a dog does this, like they are wiping their hind paws.
Ground-scratching has been referred to as a composite signal that involves chemical and visual components of communication. The kicking motion is a visual display for other dogs and may help spread the scent of urine.
Since urine odors are short-lasting, the slashes on the ground serve as longer-lasting marks to indicate the dogs presence in the area. Some scientists believe this behavior helps with scent dispersalnot necessarily scratching just to spread the urine around, but to also leave odors from a dogs paws. But the presence of urine or slashes on the ground did not deter other dogs from approaching.
Now that we have some insights on dogs kicking up grass or scratching the dirt after they go the bathroom, here are the reasons why they do it. For urban dwellers, their dogs may be more likely to exhibit this behavior in front of the apartment building, on the block where the apartment building is located, or at a local park they frequent.
Why do some dogs kick after pooping?
Our dogs consider pooping as a way of sending a message to other dogs that the ground they just did the deed on, is theirs. By kicking up dirt afterward, they’ re compounding the scent of the bathroom along with the pheromones coming from their feet glands to create one strong scent.
How do I get my dog to stop kicking after pooping?
Interrupt your dog BEFORE he kicks–this is where knowing the pattern helps. Try replacing the kicking with another behavior, like spin, jump, give-five, or tug. Once you get 95% success, start paying your dog for performance. If he does the work, he gets a big reward.
Why does my dog keep squatting after pooping?
If your dog is constipated, he or she will probably attempt to pass feces unsuccessfully several times. You may observe your dog circling excessively, scooting (dragging bottom along the ground) or squatting frequently, or even crying out in severe cases.
Have you ever noticed that when your dog pees or poops, he will then instinctively kick his hind legs back and kick the grass up? It seems like they are using grass to cover their shame and its a strange action that you see often in cats and other animals too.
After all, not only does poop and urine ruin your well-kept lawn, but the act of the dog kicking up grass will also cause havoc. Firstly though, lets look at the reasons why dogs kick up grass after a poop, as this will lead us down the route of understanding how to stop it.
Based on that, pooping and kicking up grass is not an actual problem behavior in itself and isnt something you should be alarmed by. But if you want to save your yard or garden lawn from being completely destroyed by your dogs natural kicking up of grass, distraction is your very best method of attack. In the intro I joked that dogs kick grass over their poop to cover their shame, but this is not the case at all.
Dogs kick grass up with their hind legs after a poop due to years of instinct. (Image via https://unsplash.com/photos/3_Z5yUyAhmk)Kicking grass after a poop is actually a way of marking their territory. These pheromones from dogs feet last longer than the scent of urine or feces, making them more effective as a communication tool.
This means that when your dog starts kicking the grass up with their hind legs after a pee or poop, the invisible pheromones will also fly through the air. Having a poop and then kicking the grass up is an instinctive behavior that dogs have shown for thousands of years dating back to when they lived in the wild . Your dogs nose is a pretty powerful instrument that can extract a lot of information from a single swipe of the paw.
In the wild, the scent left behind can apparently communicate the territory, food trails, sexual availability, and even signify to other dogs where danger may be lurking. Here are the steps I follow to stop my dog ruining my yard by kicking grass up after a poop or pee. The next time they go out to pee or poop and a grass kicking session, perhaps accompany them out to the back yard.
After many repetitions, your pup should begin to favor this area and leave the rest of your yard alone and help to protect the grass .
Dogs are great. But sometimes, some of their habits are a little strange. Like when they kick their feet after theyve gone to the bathroom. Ever wondered why?
Some dogs inexplicably develop the habit of coprophagia thats a fancy word for compulsively eating it; other dogs make intense eye contact with their owners while theyre doing their thing.
We know that, though there are many theories on just when, how, and even how many times through history dogs were officially domesticated as human pets and companions. First, by kicking grass over their own waste, theyre covering the scent theyve just left in the wild to mask themselves against predators.
If youve ever been camping, youll know that the same advice is given to campers in territories with lions, tigers, and bears: Bury it. The same thing applies to dogs who scratch at their beds , floors, carpets, or trees even when they arent pooping; Sometimes theyre just marking down their scent! trying to find a warm or cool spot to rest in to bury bones, remotes or other household objects out of frustration or boredom
This particular poop quirk isnt restricted to just dogs: Other canines, including wolves and foxes do the same thing. As a pet owner you should always take note if you see any change in your dogs regular behavior, and the same is true when it comes to their poop.
Some scientists believe this behavior helps with scent dispersal—not necessarily scratching just to spread the urine around, but to also leave odors from a dog’s paws. Scents can be released from a dog’s interdigital pads, or paw pads.
Other scientists think dogs are conveying visual messages to other dogs. As part of their ground-scratching, dogs typically score the ground with slashes. When no other dogs are present, the slashes tell their own story to any dog that sees them.When other dogs are around, the ground-scratching is a visual display for other dogs. One study by Bekoff (1979) of free-ranging dogs found that ground-scratching is more likely to occur when other dogs were physically present. The ground-scratching usually occurred after a dog had done a raised-leg display, with or without urination. Ground-scratching can also occur after defecation.Scientists have observed that male dogs that exhibited ground-scratching were frequently avoided by other dogs, both during the act and immediately afterward. But the presence of urine or slashes on the ground did not deter other dogs from approaching.
Researchers have found that ground-scratching occurred more often along territorial boundaries in free-ranging dogs. For dogs that belong to someone, their pet parents may notice ground-scratching is more likely to occur in their yard, in front of the house, or on grounds near their house.For urban dwellers, their dogs may be more likely to exhibit this behavior in front of the apartment building, on the block where the apartment building is located, or at a local park they frequent.Dogs may be signaling these are places they frequent to let the other dogs in the area aware of their presence. Remember that when they kick their hind paws, they are also leaving a scent from their paws in the dirt or grass.
Step 2. Bring a toy or treat
If you can tell your dog is about to poop, grab their favorite chew toy or treat to have at the ready. You’ll need it to make the smooth distraction tactics work.
Sometimes your dog is particularly adamant to kick the grass before they come to play with you or accept your offer of a treat.I find that usually when this happens, my dog will do a somewhat lifeless kick and run over to me because the appeal of a treat is just too good to miss! These light kicks shouldn’t make too much of a dent in your garden lawn