Caring for your dog is usually pretty easy. They need food, water, exercise, and affection. Occasionally however, they do something that makes you scratch your head and wonder if they're from another planet. They might even do something so embarrassing, you would never ask your vet about it. Below you'll find five questions you may have always wondered about but might not want to ask your vet.

Part 1


Why Does My Dog Lift His Leg to Pee?

Male dogs, as well as some females, lift their legs when they urinate. This is because dogs are territorial and by lifting their leg, they can pee higher. This makes it easier for other dogs to catch a whiff of your dog's scent and is supposed to warn them to stay away. Most males pick up this habit between six months and one year of age. Some dogs never do it, and if your dog was neutered at an early age, he'll probably never lift his leg. This isn't something that can be taught. If he wants to lift his leg to pee, he'll do it all on his own when he's ready.


Why Does My Dog Eat Poop?

If your dog eats poop, he's not alone. Poop eating is a disgusting habit, and your dog may eat his own poop, cat poop, or another dog's stool. There is a medical term for poop eating called coprophagia. If your dog enjoys a cat "treat" from the litter box, it's usually because the food you're feeding your cat goes partially undigested. Of course, cat food makes a tasty treat for most dogs. If your dog exhibits this type of behavior with his own, or another dog's feces, it may be time to see the vet. He may be compulsive, have stress issues, or parasites. Your vet can help you determine the cause of his coprophagia and find a solution.


Why Does My Dog Stare at Me?

Your dog loves you unconditionally. Unfortunately, that's probably not why he's staring at you. Dogs stare at their owners usually because they want something. He may want what you're eating, or he may want you to play with him. He may just want you to talk to him or give him direction. Trial and error is usually the way to find out what it is he's trying to tell you. You also need to be aware that if your pet is staring at you during a confrontation, they are exerting their dominance as the leader of the pact. The only leader of the pact in your house is you. Never be the one to break the stare, if you do, you've lost the battle and he will rule the roost. Always keep staring until your pet is the one to break eye contact.


Why Does My Dog Always Roll in Stinky Things?

It can be pretty embarrassing when your dog stops walking to drop on the ground and roll in another dog's poop. Nobody is entirely sure why they do it, but some theories suggest something obvious. They do it because they like the way something smells. If you've ever given your dog a bath with a great-smelling dog shampoo, then five minutes later they go outside and roll around on an animal carcass, it may be because they don't think that fancy shampoo smells good. He wants to smell like something that to him, smells much better, like garbage, feces or dead animals. Other studies suggest it's a way for your dog to disguise their scent from other dogs or to leave their scent on something to tell other dogs where they've been. No matter what the cause, you can be sure it dates back to his pre-domesticated days.


Why Do Dogs Sniff Each Others Butts?

This is the best way dogs get to know each other. All dogs have two glands around their anus, and these glands emit fluids. When one dog sniffs another's butt, it tells the dog everything they need to know about their new acquaintance. They can learn the dog's sex, how healthy they are, what they've been eating, and even what mood they're in at that moment. It's a perfectly normal behavior and something you don't want to stop when it happens.

There you have it. Those were some of the questions most people are too embarrassed to ask their vet. Dogs are interesting creatures and it helps make it easier to care for them when you realize how much of their odd, and sometimes disgusting behavior is instinctive and that your dog isn't just out to embarrass you. Dogs are instinctual creatures, and many of their odd behaviors are entirely based on instincts.


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