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Is there such a thing as revenge peeing?

It’s easy to try and rationalise behaviour based on human traits – like revenge or spite. For this reason, it's common for people to jump to the conclusion that if their dog starts suddenly peeing where they know they shouldn't or in places they never used to, that it's being done out of spite.

But are dogs actually capable of peeing out of spite? In short, No.

Dogs don't pee as some sort of revenge act against you, in fact, they don't understand the concept of revenge. They will pee to communicate anxiety, fear, health problems, to mark their territory or because they had no other option than to pee inside.

Here are the common reasons why your pooch may be peeing where they shouldn’t:

Fear and anxiety

If your dog is feeling anxious or fearful, this may lead them to urinate inside the house. Usually, the timing of this feels like 'revenge' for being scolded for something else they have done. For example, if your dog has chewed through something they shouldn't have and you yell at them, this may induce fear and therefore urination. As a human reading the situation, it may be easy to think they've done this to get back at you for yelling at them – this is not the case.

Marking their territory

Dogs are pack animals, that are highly territorial. If you introduce a new body into the house (for example a new baby or another pet), they may feel threatened and seek to mark their territory by leaving their pee throughout the house.

Health issues

The reason why your dog may be suddenly peeing inside may be a sign of a health issue. Health issues such as UTIs, kidney disease and bladder infections can all lead to the inability to hold in urine.

Inadequate house training

If you have a new puppy or dog that hasn’t received the right level of house training, they may not know any better.
In short, dogs aren’t peeing to protest or as a revenge act against you. Learn to read the signs so you can live harmoniously together.