Understanding Your Dog's Submissive Peeing

Does your dog urinate whenever someone greets them, or perhaps when you come home or start speaking to them? You are not alone. For some dogs, this is an instinctual response. Fortunately, you can help them.

Some dogs have quite submissive temperaments. This is part of their nature and is nothing to be alarmed about. They are truly subordinate dogs and they often feel unworthy of the attention or adulation that is being paid to them, because a dog of this temperament would not receive any kind of regard in a wild pack.

The same applies to puppies, as they have yet to mature and become confident enough to be a leader. They are usually ignored or reminded of their place by the other adult dogs. As a result of them wanting to acquiesce as much as possible, they grovel and avert their eyes, and sometimes even wet themselves.

Some puppies outgrow this submissive peeing as they become more confident.

To speed up the process, here are a few tips:

  • When you first come home, don’t interact with your pup in any way. This means no looking, no talking, and no touching them.
  • Don’t rush over to them as you let them in or out if they have been outside or crated.
  • Instruct any visitors to pretend they are not there when they first come in. This includes looking at them! A look can be quite threatening in dog body language.
  • When they no longer feel overwhelming pressure, they will come to check things out. Do not attempt to pet or talk to them! Allow them time and space.
  • Don’t make it a goal for visitors to greet your dog. Respect your dog's soft nature and allow them to decide for themselves when they feel secure enough to make a gesture—or not.

As always, if you need some one-on-one assistance, your local Bark Busters trainer would be happy to help.

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