Training/Behavior: Why Do Dogs Kick Up Grass After Pooping?

At least once a day, Jeremy and I watch in complete amusement as Taylor does this after she poops:

It is always interesting to watch your dog do the Cancan, but I’ve always been curious as to why dogs kick up grass after defecating.

According to Dr. Patty Khuly of Vetstreet, canines in the wild (such as wolves and foxes) kick up grass to “…cover up the mess…”, meaning that this behavior could be inborn.

Who knew dogs can be so sanitary?  :)

What adds to this mystery is that, on occasion, Taylor kicks up grass after she pees as well!  Hmmm….

The American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA) states that dogs also kick up grass as a way to mark territory.  There are actually glands in a dog’s paw pads that release pheromones into the ground during the kicking process.  In other words, whenever Taylor kicks up grass, it is her way of declaring in front of the entire neighborhood that TAYLOR WAS HERE!

Does your dog kick up grass as well?  Please share in the comments below!  :)

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9 comments

  1. It is hilarious to watch and Litchi does it after poops or pees. Most times she has already stepped away from where she did her “business”so although it is, in all likelihood a left over from wild days, she herself has no clue why and misses the target completely :D

    1. I often compare this very interesting dog behavior to the act that many rebellious children performed when they were younger: taking a marker to a bathroom stall wall and inscribing “______ WAS HERE!”. I never did that, of course! ;)

  2. I have never had a female that kicks. Sidney and Shelby are Scotties 10 and 11. Sidney kicks all of the time and I have learned to move quickly.

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