Weird dog behaviours explained

By GAPNSW
When you witness your pooches ‘odd’ behaviour like humping, butt scooting and eating poop, you’re not alone in asking yourself ‘is my dog normal?’ These types of activities showcase instinctive animal behaviour which can be seen in all dog breeds the world over.

There is a reason why your dog engages in these unsavoury acts, and there is usually nothing to be alarmed about.

Sir hump-a lot

Dogs can display humping behaviour as a form of play with other dogs. But not all humping behaviour has the same intent, here are some other reasons why dogs may hump:

  • Pursuit: If your dog becomes very focused on another dog and his humping causes another dog to try and get away/show signs of discomfort, you need to recall your dog to avoid distress harm to the other dog. The behaviour has evolved from play to pursuit and needs to be stopped.
  • Stress: humping can be utilised as an avenue for stress relief or repressed emotion. If the cause of stress is not addressed, the humping can become an addiction in the long run.
  • OCD: Dogs with obsessive-compulsive disorder may turn to humping if their habit is interrupted. For example, a dog who compulsively paces may turn to humping an object or person if the owner stops them from pacing. If your dog has OCD and turns to humping, you should not stop this behaviour as it can cause distress.
The bum scoot’n boogie

From time to time you may witness your dog drag their bum across the ground like somehow there is a magnetic pull between their anus and the floor. There are several very normal reasons why your dog may be doing this:

  • Irritation of the anus: Caused by something as simple as an itch, to more serious cases such as worms or wounds. If you see your dog doing this often, see your vet for a thorough examination
  • Infection: Glands inside your dogs rectum called anal sacs, can become infected or impacted which causes discomfort. If you can smell a horrible odour coming from this region, your dog may have an infection that will need to be addressed by a vet.
  • Worms: If you see tiny white specs that look like rice, or long spaghetti-like strands in your dog’s poo, your dog may have worms. If your dog is dragging their bum along the ground more than twice a week, and they are also agitated and licking or biting this area, you should seek veterinary care.
Poop is best served cold

This culinary delicacy is enjoyed by many dogs. Some eat others poop, some eat their own and some like to try poop from other animals.

You’ll be delighted to know that there is a reason for this stomach-churning behaviour. Dogs can sniff out food that has not properly broken down inside poo, and will use the opportunity to supplement their own nutrition.