When we take our dogs outside to use the potty, you might notice that they kick up quite a fuss. I’m not talking about throwing a fit, I’m talking about literally kicking up grass and dirt after they do their business. You might be wondering if this is just a strange behavior of dogs or if there is a purpose. You are about to find out.
When dogs go to the potty, they do tend to kick up some dirt behind them. It might seem as if they are trying to cover up their poop or perhaps they are being polite and wiping their paws. In reality, there’s a logical reason why they are doing it.
I’ll be the first one to admit that I have often wondered about this type of behavior. Other people, however, may never think much about it. When you learn about the habit, however, it helps to build appreciation for the dogs that are part of our family.
Dogs have glands that contain pheromones in their paws. They scratch or rub the paws against the ground to mark their territory. Perhaps that is why you sometimes see your dog stopping for no apparent reason and kicking up a little bit of dirt. They just want other dogs to know that the area is theirs.
In addition, canines use this type of behavior to establish a hierarchy. There may be many dogs in a particular territory but they want all to know who is in charge. It is similar to the reason why a dog will urinate on objects. It is simply a way to release pheromones so that other dogs understand to keep their distance.
What might be perhaps the most interesting fact about this topic is that all dogs will do it. It doesn’t matter if they are the biggest, baddest dog on the block or if they are a little teacup Chihuahua, they will likely scratch the ground if there is another dog in the nearby area.
Another reason why they may take part in this practice is to spread their business a little wider. When their poo covers more ground, the scent will be stronger. This is true of both male and female dogs.
If your dog takes part in this behavior, don’t think that they are strange. As a matter of fact, it is perfectly normal for a dog to kick or scratch so there is no need for you to take the dog to the vet. If, however, their behavior changes suddenly, a trip to the veterinarian may be in order.
Although it may be normal for a dog to do this, it can cause problems for your lawn. If you want to prevent this damage from occurring, take your dog for frequent walks and let them do their business elsewhere.