Why Do Dogs Kick After They Pee?

Itโ€™s a fun weekend, and you decided to walk your doggie in the park. Of course, there comes a time when your pup would relieve itself. They would often kick dirt, grass, or even sand behind them, and it’s common to assume that the action is simply a means for them to keep their territory clean.

However, you’ve noticed that your dog is repeating the behavior. So you’re left wondering why they have this odd habit. Kicking the hind legs right after peeing may seem to be a meaningless action, but there are factors why your doggie is constantly doing it.

It’s in dogs’ nature to kick their legs after they pee. Dogs kick their legs not because of embarrassment, but to keep other pups away, mark their territory by leaving their scent, convey a virtual signal, wipe their paws, and announce their readiness to mate.

Itโ€™s really amazing how dogs have different behaviors. Although canines may have their own set of acceptable reasons for kicking back with their hind legs after peeing, we will cover all of them together in this article.

Is It Normal For Dogs To Kick After Peeing?

Image from Tall Tails

Most scientists believe that kicking after peeing is a common canine habit. They say that dogs do it as a form of communication.

However, many animal behaviorists claim that kicking up some dirt after peeing is rare, with only 10% of canines having this behavior.

Numerous vet professionals recommend allowing your pooch to try this form of nonverbal communication with other creatures. This behavior is known as “ground scratching,” and this is a trait passed down from coyotes and wolves. The essence of this trait is still applicable to dogs, even though it isn’t directly inherited.

If youโ€™re really curious about this behavior, continue reading this section so you can learn more about it.

Should I Be Worried About My Dogโ€™s Kicking Behavior?

Thereโ€™s no need to worry about this behavior. Although your doggie may be trying to help whenever it kicks after peeing, several pet parents dislike the damage it makes to their lawn. Nevertheless, this kicking behavior of doggie must not be discouraged if at all feasible, as it is normal and natural.

Do Dogs Get Embarrassed After Peeing In Public?

Dogs don’t get embarrassed about peeing or doing other physiological functions in public. Humanity invented the concept of private parts; canines presumably don’t understand why you cover yours, so urinating is just as natural to them as eating or sleeping.

Do All Dogs Kick After Peeing

Image from Pet Creations

Not all dogs kick after they pee. Although some dogs do kick after they pee and others donโ€™t, this behavior is a normal way for your dogs to communicate, and it’s nothing to be worried about.

Pups who are more dominating are more likely to kick aggressively after peeing. If you have more than one pooch, you may observe that some of them barely kick, whereas others put on quite a show.

In this section, the reasons why your dog tends to kick after they pee will be discussed. If you want to know more about it, just keep on reading.

Are Dogs Kicking After Peeing To Mark Their Territory?

The scent glands located in the base of your doggie’s feet are used to mark its territory. These glands carry pheromones, which are invisible scent-marking compounds that serve as your pup’s identity.

Pheromones can also be found in urine and anal gland secretions, which can be utilized to mark territory.

Even while you cannot smell pheromones, your dog will be able to determine that the pee belongs to someone else once it kicks. Scent glands aren’t necessary for domesticated dogs, but they were utilized by their predecessors to mark their territory.

This action could be used as a territorial dog’s warning signal or an indication that your pooch is ready to mate. After smelling another pup’s pee, you may observe your pooch kicking on it. This could be an attempt to mask the odors of the other canines with their own.

Is Kicking After Peeing One Of A Dogโ€™s Way To Communicate?

Since dogs’ noses are far more sensitive than humans’ noses, they will mostly use scents to communicate. Dogs will use the scent of their pees to alert other dogs that they have visited the area and that it is now their exclusive territory.

Any attempt by other dogs to wipe up this smell marking could be interpreted as a show of power.

Is Kicking After Peeing A Dogโ€™s Way To Wipe Their Paws?

Of course, you wouldnโ€™t want your hand dirty all the time. This is the same with your dog. Certain pups dislike having unclean paws; therefore, if they do get something on their paws after peeing, they may kick to clean them.

Canines don’t enjoy the feeling of debris or dirt on their paws and are merely rubbing it off, similar to how they would scratch their face on the floor if something were on their face.

While kicking can be a symptom of discomfort or perhaps an effort to get something off paws, it is more likely to be related to one of the other two factors explained above when it occurs solely after peeing.

Is Kicking After Peeing A Sign Of Aggression?

Although it’s natural to assume that kicking after peeing is a sign of aggression in dogs, most experts believe it’s more complicated than that.

This is especially true for territorial dogs. Domesticated animals do not own or control territories in the same manner that wild animals do.

Maybe, instead of violently telling other canines to steer clear, ground scratching could just be a dog’s way of alerting others to their presence, potentially reducing the chances of them meeting in a small space. 

However, for more anxious canines, it could be an effort to control the area and create a safer environment for them just because they don’t like encountering other dogs. Rather than trying to regulate your doggie’s instincts, the right way to deal with this kind of behavior is to simply let them be.

Image from Pet Creations

Why Does A Dog Kick Dirt After Peeing?

Contrary to popular belief, scratching the dirt is not your doggie’s way of dispersing smell or burying any traces, as cats do. Dogs kick dirt after peeing for a purpose, and this has something to do with their paws.

Pheromones are secreted by scent glands found in the paws of your dogs. A few scratches into the dirt release compounds that can be recognized by other canines in the vicinity. They could be sending significant warning signs in their path, alerting other dogs to the presence of danger.

Why Did My Dog Scratch The Ground After Peeing?

After peeing, canines scratch the ground to communicate with other dogs. They will leave and spread their scent across the region by digging. This is a natural instinct that can be either protective or territorial. Most pups may just do this to make their presence known as well as to reduce their anxiety.

Why Do Female Dogs Kick After Peeing?

Scent marking isn’t simply for marking territory, and it’s not just for male canines. A female dog’s kicking action serves as a visual cue to other canines and may help in the spread of urine scent.

Ground scratching serves as a lifelong mark to identify the dog’s presence in the area, as urine odors are temporary.

Should I Stop My Dog From Kicking After Peeing?

Thereโ€™s actually no reason to stop your doggie from kicking after peeing. However, if their paws have already caught a lot of dirt or doing it so violently that their nails and paw pads are getting injured, you may need to interrupt to save them from future harm.

If your pooch is kicking its hind legs at home or its favorite park, it is most likely unrelated to peeing. It’s all about claiming their territory and claiming their space. Be realistic in your expectations with your dog, and stay patient and optimistic.

How Do I Get My Dog To Stop Kicking After Peeing?

If you think that your pooch is making a lot of trouble by doing this action, you can use various management strategies. Get ready to act before the scratching begins whenever you bring your pup out to pee.

Image from Pet Creations

Supervise Your Dog

You must be aware of when your doggie is about to pee. Consider accompanying them out to the park or down the streets the next moment they go out to pee and have a ground scratching session. Keep an eye on them but do not really stalk them because you’ll make them feel uneasy.

Take Your Dogโ€™s Favorite Treat Or Toy With You

Take your dog’s favorite chew toy along with you as you accompany your dog outside to pee. Also, make sure that your doggie knows you’ve got a pocket full of its favorite treats with you. These will all be required in order for the smooth distraction techniques to work.

Offer your dog these toys and treats quickly between when it starts to pee and when it starts to scratch the ground. Your objective is to divert your doggie’s focus away from spreading its scent.

Avatar photo
Pete Decker