Why Do Dogs Kick Dirt After They Poop?

As lovable as dogs are, they sometimes demonstrate the behaviors that are unique and some non dog owners may even consider odd. From chasing their tails to barking at still items , it’s sometimes hard to figure out just why our dogs do the odd little things that they do. That’s where the Miniature Paws Question and Answer Section comes in.

Now, one odd habit that you’ll see many dogs displaying is the well known habit of kicking up dirt after they go potty (to pee or to poop). Have you seen your dog do this before and wondered just why your pooch can’t seem to relieve himself without tearing up the yard in the process? If you have, Jeff Van Dalsum from Perfect Puppy Care reveals just why do dogs kick dirt after they poop.

Why Do Dogs Kick Dirt After They Poop?

Why Do Dogs Kick Dirt After They Poop?

Why Do Dogs Kick Dirt After They Poop?

The answer in a nutshell is that the dog is marking his or her territory by leaving a message about themselves. Marking is one of the main components of a canine’s natural and instinctual ability to communicate through their own kind of messaging system. It also allows them to leave messages for other species of animals.

The marking of grass and dirt is successful in part due to the fact that dogs have scent glands in their paws. The scratching movements release secretions that provide a lot of information about the dog.

Dogs exude pheromones when they urinate or defecate. While the pheromones may mean nothing to us, they speak loads to other dogs. Pheromones include information about a dog’s gender, age and overall health. The secretion of pheromones is a means of leaving messages about themselves that other animals will understand.

A dog that marks his or her territory could be telling other dogs that this is their turf. It warns other animals to the fact that the dog has claimed a particular territory and there could be consequences for any animals that invades it.

Some experts believe that dogs scratch up dirt and grass because they feel the need to cover one’s own scent from the enemy. This is a trait that is said to have been instinctively learned from wolves.

One might ask why do dogs mark areas they have never before visited. In some cases, it may be that the new dog in town is making a show of dominance. The visiting dog could be showing intentions of taking over and becoming the alpha dog. The dog could also be communicating that he or she is capable of being strong in battle, so it is wise to allow the visiting dog pass through without incident.

In other cases, it can also be a case of the dog communicating through the release of pheromones that it means no harm by infringing on another dog’s territory. Their scent tells other dogs that they have no intentions of encroaching on another’s territory. They just want to pass through without intending harm to any animal.

Although it is almost impossible to change a dog’s natural instinct, there are a few things you can try if Fido is being too destructive to your yard. Start by observing what your dog does when he or she does their business and follows with the scratching and covering movements. Take note to how many steps your dog takes when doing the actual marking.

Once you identify a pattern, you can try to interrupt it. It may be possible to use the dog’s favorite squeaky toy. Simply squeak the toy just before the dog begins his or her scratching routine. This may be enough to make them forget the need to scratch and cover. If your dog is motivated by treats, try offering a treat in place of the sounding the squeaky toy.

If the need to break your dog of the natural instinct to kick and scratch up grass and dirt isn’t a priority to you, you can minimize the damage done by the dog’s nails by keeping them trimmed. Longer nails will dig up more grass and dirt and do far more damage than shorter ones.

Source: Perfect Puppy Care

Once you understand that the dirt kicking habit is really all about territory marking, it really does make sense. Canines are notorious for marking off certain areas as their own, so dogs continue to do what they’ve been hardwired to do by instinct.

And if your dog is messing up the yard a bit more than you care for, remember the importance of interrupting the habit. As to what method you’ll use to do this, it will really depend upon the best, positive motivation for your dog. Some dogs may react best to treats, while others may simply enjoy chasing a ball. Take some time to observe your dog during this behavior and then jump in with a distraction to minimize damage to your yard.

Like us humans, dogs have their own set of quirky behaviors but we hope that this post has answered the question “why do dogs kick dirt after they poop“. Of course, these behaviors give dogs more character, and more reasons for us to love them. If you agree, please click LIKE above to let us know.


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