Five Reasons Your Dog Is Peeing In the House

Most people housebreak their pets when they are puppies.  If they get an older rescue dog, they housebreak them when the dog comes to live with them.  However, occasionally a housebroken dog pees in the house.  Here are five behavioral and medical reasons this may be happening and what to do about them.

  1. Over excitement.  These dogs are wiggling, moving around and happy.  They get so excited they spray urine everywhere.  The way to treat this is to lower the excitement of things a notch.  Don’t let your kids get the dog wound up so much, and crate the dog when you cannot supervise him.  When you get home, leave the dog crated for ten minutes or so until he calms down, then let him out.
  2. Submissive urination.  This one is harder to deal with than almost any other reason for peeing in the house.  It usually occurs when someone leans over the dog, grabs him, or scolds him.  The dog may appear happy and then get scared and urinate.  Try to approach the dog from a lower profile.  Do not loom over the dog or severely scold him.  Yelling at a dog for submissively urinating will cause the dog to start urinating again and is counterproductive.
  3. Improper house breaking.  This happens a lot with small dogs, who are hard to catch in the act because it happens so fast.  The best approach to this problem is to crate the dog when you cannot supervise him and take him outside frequently for him to do his business.  Praise the dog ecstatically when he does urinate outside and give him a treat.  Basically, you are starting housebreaking over and trying to teach the dog that outside is the only appropriate place to urinate.
  4. Marking in the house.  This usually occurs as a result of puberty in an unneutered dog or as the result of stress in a previously housebroken dog.  If your dog has hit puberty and is still not neutered, you should neuter him.  If the dog has previously been housebroken and suddenly starts marking, you should find the source of stress that is causing this behavior and eliminate it.
  5. Medical disorders.  The first thing you should do when a previously housebroken dog pees in the house is take them to the veterinarian for a check-up.  Things like urinary infections may cause them to not be able to hold their urine and they pee wherever they are standing when the urge hits.  This is not the dog’s fault and he should not be punished for it.  Also, dementia sometimes causes senior dogs to forget their house manners.  They may be confused and think they are outside when they go.  There is medicine to help doggy dementia and slow its effects.  Your veterinarian can discuss it with you.

Dogs pee in the house for various reasons.  These five are the most common ones.