We all know that cats are the most likely culprits of indoor tinkling. It’s usually male cats trying to lay claim to their kingdom and ruining our couches in the process. We once had a male indoor cat who took up spraying the sofa, and he was quickly transitioned to an indoor/outdoor cat so he could spend the majority of his days outside taking out his territorial aggressions on the rosebushes rather than my mother’s prized couch. And while cats are notorious for sometimes peeing in the house, our dogs aren’t entirely innocent on that front either. Our pups are just as culpable. And there are many reasons why a dog may occasionally pee in the house.
For dogs, pee is the equivalent of their social calling card. While we could never imagine peeing somewhere other than a bathroom, dogs will often pee in places frequented by other dogs. This allows them to share with other dogs all the important information about them, such as their health, age, and status in terms of sexual availability. And the need for dogs to pee as a means of marking territory comes from their wolf ancestry, as wolves will often use bodily evolutions to mark their territory. As a result, our dogs are sniff-readers who use urine or even feces as a way to learn everything needed to know about another dog – it’s like a really gross dog version of social media.
Typically speaking, our dogs will save these habits for outside. We’ve all seen our dogs in action, having to stop and pee at every single signpost or lamp post that they pass in order to leave their mark. But sometimes they will practice these habits indoors which can be problematic. The easiest way of explaining this behavior is that they are trying to claim your home space. The place where dogs are more likely to mark their territory is the areas that smell most like their human. It’s their way of overriding your scent. As much as they love you, they are also declaring a coup. Spaying or neutering your pet is the most straightforward way to battle these habits. However, their marking can also be a result of anxiety or some other behavioral problem. If your dog is showing signs of constant marking or other urinal accidents, then it is best to consult with a vet in order to figure out the best way to cope or rule out underlying issues.