Why is My Dog Acting Weird? (11 Dog Behaviors Explained)
All of our fur children are unique in their own ways – after all, that is why we love them so much. From looks, attitudes, barks and behaviors, they all have their quirks…just like us hoomans.
If your pooch has exhibited some questionable behaviors (or just downright strange), you may feel perplexed as to why they do such things like sniff butts, eat poop, whine or lick your face. If you’re a seasoned dog mom or dad, you’re probably used to it. We’re here with some of the best explanations we have for your dog behavior questions.
Why do dogs eat grass? Is it bad for them?
Our fur children are actually natural omnivores, using plants to supplement their diets. In fact, many dog chows include grains in addition to meats. Eating grass occasionally may be a sign of self-medication when Fido’s tummy doesn’t feel so good or perhaps he is trying to treat a gastrointestinal parasite they picked up in the woods on your last hike.
Grass eating is a somewhat common dog behavior and is not considered to be harmful on occasion. As a responsible dog mom or dad, you might consider a visit to your vet if you suspect an underlying medical condition such as gastrointestinal disease.
Otherwise, your doggo might be eating grass out of boredom. Dogs will be dogs!
Why does my dog eat poop?
Perhaps one of the least appealing habits dogs emBARK on is the dreaded poop eating. Maybe they don’t even distinguish between a dog or another animal’s poop (which is a recipe for ingesting parasites and viruses – please see a vet). In any case, it’s quite icky to us hoomans and can make you less inclined to accept their sweet doggie kisses.
So, what’s the explanation for this dog behavior deviance? On top of being an omnivore, dogs are also natural scavengers. They’ll eat whatever they can find – from your kid’s popsicle to whatever you drop on the floor whilst preparing dinner (mmm, watermelon).
The top reason for dogs eating poop is that your woof may be lacking sufficient nutrient intake. This could mean they’re experiencing:
- Diets deficient in nutrients and calories
- Malabsorption syndromes
- Diabetes, Cushing’s, thyroid disease, and other conditions that might cause an increase in appetite
- Drugs, such as steroids
If your doggo has a habit of poop eating, you should consult your vet to find out why your dog is acting weird and to rule out serious conditions.
Why does my dog keep peeing in the house?
This may not have you asking yourself “why is my dog acting weird?” But It can be frrrustrating if your fur babe has numerous indoor accidents, especially if it’s an adult pooch that has already been house trained. Our dog doctors call this “inappropriate urination” and it does not apply to puppies that are not yet fully house trained.
If your dog is frequently going in the house, it may be a sign that they have an underlying health issue. Continue treating your four-legged family with love and care as you navigate the issue.
Common health issues such as urinary tract infections or bladder stones may be at the root of the problem. You should visit your vet if your doggo continues to have indoor accidents. They will likely ask for a urine sample to check for bacteria or abnormal cells.
If your vet has ruled out all health issues, you may be facing a behavioral problem. If you have a male dog, he may be marking – even if he’s been neutered. Your dog might also be experiencing anxiety if there has been a change in your home environment. It could be that someone may have moved in or out, such as having a new baby or getting another pet.
In any case, there are several steps you can take to help your pooch make a pawsitive change:
- Potty training him or her again
- Make more frequent trips outside to the bathroom
- Don’t yell or punish your woof
- Identify the trigger to help your pup cope
- Get professional help
While Hounds Lounge does not train dogs, it might be worthwhile to consider doggie daycare as a way to help your pooch become well-adjusted over time. Doggie daycare can be a great way to improve separation anxiety that your dog may feel if he or she is left alone during the day and other behavioral problems. It will also remove the option to have house accidents in the meantime.
Why does my dog keep pooping in the house?
Much like peeing in the house, our dog doctors refer to pooping in the house as “inappropriate elimination.” There are several causes, both behavioral and health-related, that may be an underlying reason why your pooch goes in the house.
Your furbaby may be pooping in the house for any of the following reasons:
- They went too long between potty outings
- They are experiencing health issues such as a parasite or viral infection
- They may be suffering from separation anxiety
- They may have inflammatory bowel disease
- They may be aging and can’t control their bowels like they used to
If your dog is pooping in the house repeatedly, it is best to visit your vet for further evaluation. From there, they will be able to help you understand why fido is pooping in the house and make a plan to help your beloved furbabe.
If your woof’s potty problems are anxiety-induced, it may be helpful to consider doggie daycare as an option to help improve your pooch’s overall wellbeing. Doggie daycare creates structure in your pup’s week and helps develop their self-confidence and social skills. Read on for more answers to “Why is my dog acting weird?”
Why does my dog lick me so much?
“Why is my dog acting weird? He’s giving me too many kisses!” said no one ever. We all know from experience that dogs have a sixth sense for how their hoomans are feeling. Our fur children are highly intuitive and mirror our emotions. Your pooch will lick you to comfort you if they think you are sad or lavishly kiss you to show their happiness especially after a long day at work. Dogs give licks to express their emotions, too!
Why does my dog lick his paws?
Paw licking is fairly common and when done on occasion and should not worry a proud dog mom or dad. They’re just cleaning themselves!
However, if your dog is licking his paws to the point of irritation, then something else might be going on. Your pooch’s paw might be itchy, irritated or painful. It’s important to keep your doggo’s paws protected during extreme temperatures (see safety tips for summer).
Some causes of excessive paw licking could be:
- Direct injury to a paw such as a bug bite or sting
- An unseen injury such as a broken bone or other playtime injuries
- Bacterial or viral infection of the paw
- Irritation due to allergies
- Separation anxiety or general anxiety for any number of reasons
If you suspect your woof is licking themselves in excess, it’s best to take extra paw-caution and have a professional veterinarian check it out!
Why does my dog shake after lounging?
Shaking and down dog – it’s her morning ritual!
As hoomans, we tend to stretch out after a good nap or first thing in the morning. Our precious fur babes are not much different when they stretch out, too. They may be a bit drowsy, so they shake and do a little yoga to wake up and enter an alert state of mind.
Why does my dog whine?
Whining woofs are trying to tell us something. Since doggos aren’t fluent in English, they express themselves, their needs and wants through body language, barking and whining. If excessive whining is making you wonder, “why is my dog acting weird?” pay attention!
As pet parents, we can learn how to tell the different whines our furkids make. Your fur child may try to let you know they need to relieve themselves, perhaps they’re scared, anxious, frustrated, bored, extremely excited or in pain.
So, whining represents the emotional state of mind of your four-legged companion. It’s very normal as long as we are mindful to fulfill our dog needs without encouraging what eventually can become an unwanted behavior. Be on the lookout of the signs in body language accompanied by the whining to understand what your dog is trying to tell you.
Why does my dog stare at me?
If you are trying to teach a new trick to your dog or are having a whole conversation with him, he may stare at you and tilt his head. Our furbabies associate words we teach them with direct action and reward.
A dog’s main form of communication is body language, which includes staring at you. After all, you are the love of your dog’s life. He or she may be trying to determine your emotional state, get your attention or steal some hooman kisses and affection.
Why does my dog follow me everywhere?
Your pooch loves you and never wants to be away from you – that’s why! You’re his fur-ever friend. The only way to get your dog to stop following you everywhere is to take them to Hounds Lounge for daycare, where they’ll zoom into a play yard with their best buds and never look back.
Why does my dog scoot?
Your four-legged furbabe is probably dealing with some sort of booty irritation. While many dogs express their anal glands when they poop, other breeds need a bit of help from us hoomans. If your dog needs their anal glands expressed, we’ll happily take care of them on their next grooming appointment. Your dog might also be trying to scratch an itch orrrr get rid of a pesky turd.
There are plenty of behaviors that will have you asking “why is my dog acting weird?” Ultimately it’s up to you to use your best judgment to determine if it’s a medical emergency or just your pup being a pup!
We Know Dog Behaviors
Don’t worry if you find yourself wondering “why is my dog acting weird?” Our staff at Hounds Lounge is trained to recognize the meaning of your woof’s behaviors. It’s how we keep our pooches safe, loved and cared for during their time at the Lounge. From grooming experts that are vigilant to note and report any issues we find to daycare attendants that supervise and observe our vacationers 24/7 – we know dog behaviors and do everything we can to keep each and every pooch pampered. Stop by for a day of play at doggie daycare or come get a haircut from one of our expert groomers!