Dogs are pretty smart when it comes to getting what they want. Sometimes they do things to get your attention, other times it’s to get a treat, and in some cases, there could be a medical issue that’s driving the behavior. But you probably already know that if you’ve been a dog owner for a while now.
Have you recently noticed your dog pretending to pee? Your dog isn’t the only one to display this bizarre behavior. My dog does this too, as a matter of fact.
Naturally, I presumed he was just a weirdo doing things for no reason. Then I did some research and discovered that many dogs do this.
If you’re wondering why this is happening and what the reasoning is behind it, read on. Here are all the reasons your dog might be fake peeing.
#1: Your Dog Wants to Go Outside
If your long-beloved dog or new puppy pretends to pee, he could be doing it simply because he wants to go outside.
Does he cock up his leg indoors even though he’s potty trained and knows he shouldn’t? Is she squatting inside in spite of knowing that it’s wrong? These could be tactics to get you to let your pooch outside. They’re sneaky little devils, I know!
Like I said before, dogs are smart – especially when it comes to getting what they want. They’ll bend the rules and pretend they’ve forgotten things just to grab your attention and get you to open the door and let him out.
If you suspect your dog is doing this, don’t fall for his tricks. I know it’s tough, especially when he gives you those adorable puppy eyes, but it’ll teach him not to play games.
Unfortunately, if you keep letting him outside every time he pretends to pee, he’ll have you wrapped around his sweet little paw forever, and then you’ll never break the habit.
Of course, if you genuinely think the poor guy needs to urinate, make sure you let him out. But if you think he’s messing with you, try not to fall for it – as hard as that can be! Trust me, I’ve been there – many times!
#2: Your Dogs Wants to Stay Out Longer
Another reason your dog pretends to be could be because he doesn’t want to go home yet. From what I’ve read on pet Reddit threads, this seems pretty common. Is he or she constantly cocking up their leg or squatting and nothing is coming out? Your pooch is probably just doing it so he can stay outside longer.
My dog fake pees when he actually just wants to sniff the area. I didn’t realize it until I started paying attention and noticed nothing was coming out.
The dude was totally fooling me! I think this scenario is especially common with male dogs, as they like sniffing more than females. My dog will literally try to sniff every few meters, and that’s when he starts cocking up his leg pretending to urinate.
It’s as if he’s trying to convince me he still needs to go. Now I’ve grown accustomed to his shenanigans, so I’m no longer fooled by this trick.
#3: Your Puppy Wants a Treat
Are you currently potty training your new pup? Dogs, regardless of their age, tend to learn fast when it comes to getting tasty treats. Your pup is no different.
If your potty training method involves giving them a treat every time they pee in the correct place, it won’t be long before they figure out that they can also get a treat by fake peeing.
If your new puppy fake pees for treats, try to break the habit as soon as you realize it so that the behavior doesn’t continue. Otherwise, he could end up tricking you for many more years to come. Dogs aren’t dumb.
They make connections between their activity and positive rewards, which is why they’ll do specific things in order to get more of that positive attention.
Of course, not every puppy pretends to pee for the sake of getting treats. But it is a common behavior many dog owners witness. Once again, aim to only give them a treat when they’ve actually peed. No rewards for fake pees since that’s a negative behavior!
Your new pup might be adorable, but he’s gotta learn the rules – sooner rather than later.
#4: Your Dog is Trying to Mark Their Territory
Dogs, especially male dogs, use their urine to mark areas they want to claim as their own. Marking their territory signifies the reproductive status of the dog while letting other dogs in the area know that they are present and that the area belongs to them. Even though it doesn’t of course! The best way to prevent this is by getting your dog spayed or neutered.
Some dogs continue to try to make their territory even when there’s no more pee to release. If you’ve noticed your dog pretending to pee, he might not actually be pretending but trying to push out more urine – which simply isn’t there.
I sometimes see this habit with my own dog. I’ll take him on a walk and he literally lets me stand there for five minutes as he sniffs the ground, and “urinates.” I’ve recently discovered that he’s been trying to mark his area even though he’s all out of pee. Sorry, dude, maybe next time!
#5: Your Dog Doesn’t Like the Weather
According to one dog owner on Dog Forums, his pup pretends to pee when it’s wet outside. From what I can understand, the dog fake pees in order to convince his owner that he’s all done with the toilet simply so he can get back home asap.
According to the experts, many dogs dislike the rain. Most of the time, it’s because the rain makes them feel uncomfortable. They don’t fully understand what it is, all they know is that they don’t like how it feels. Can’t blame them at all with that one! I don’t like rain, either!
Some dogs don’t like the rain because they attach it to previous negative experiences, like the times you scolded him when he tracked mud into the house. Perhaps he remembers that experience and doesn’t want it happening again, so he’d prefer to show you he’s urinated in order to go home and swerve the scolding.
Then there’s the sound aspect of rain. Majority of dogs find the sound of rain unpleasant, especially when there’s thunder and lightning too. If you don’t like the sound of thunder and lightning, imagine how your dog must feel. After all, dogs hear things twice as loud as humans – so it’s probably twice as scary for them too!
#6: Your Dog Might Have Anxiety
My friend’s chihuahua has some severe anxiety issues. I have no idea why. She has a devoted, loving owner, comfortable bedding, and plenty of tasty, nutritious food. Nothing is missing in her life from what I can tell and yet she still seems to get stressed and nervous – particularly when she’s outside. And I believe that’s why she fake pees.
By pretending to pee in front of her owner, the owner automatically thinks she’s done her business, and that they can go back home. What she doesn’t know (or at least didn’t know until I made her aware of it) is that her chihuahua is simply pretending to pee in a bid to return to her safe and cozy bed.
It turns out, chihuahuas are known for their nervous tendencies. If you’ve noticed he or she’s been fake peeing every time you take her out for walks, it could be down to nervousness and anxiety. The best thing you can do is visit a veterinarian for professional guidance on how to treat your chihuahua’s anxiety.
Alternatively, you could try re-potty training her and giving her treats every time she actually pees. This way, she’ll learn that urinating while outside leads to a tasty reward. And honestly, I don’t think she’d turn that down!
#7: Your Dog Wants Attention
If your puppy pretends to pee, it could be purely because he’s craving your attention. Sometimes, dogs do bizarre things simply because they want your love and attention.
Since he probably knows peeing indoors is forbidden, he’s smart enough to know that pretending to do so will get you up and in his direction, but he won’t get told off because he hasn’t actually peed.
Yup, dogs are super smart – way smarter than most people think. And expect his sharpness to improve the older he gets. After all, with age comes wisdom and he’ll be well tuned into what works when it comes to getting your attention.
Of course, some dogs actually urinate to gain their owners’ attention. This is especially common in attention-seeking dogs or those that are left alone for a long time. The good news is, you can reverse and prevent this behavior by spending more quality time with him. All dogs need that – just like you and I!
#8: Your Dog is Afraid of Other Dogs in the Area
Has your dog recently experienced a frightening event or attack? For some dogs, these events can affect their daily habits, like going for walks and urinating.
If you notice your dog fake peeing when you take him for walks, it could be because he wants you to take him back to safety (aka his home). This isn’t the case with all dogs. Some dogs get over such incidents more quickly than others.
If you’re seeing this behavior in your dog and he’s recently had an unpleasant event with another dog, speak to a veterinarian on how to conquer his fears. They’ll be able to advise you on how to best deal with his anxiety.
In the meantime, you could let him go to the toilet in the garden until his nervousness towards other dogs subsides.
My previous dog was attacked by a much larger dog many years ago, and I remember how badly affected he was by that experience.
When taking him for walks, he’d often look around while peeing, as if he was constantly on guard against other dogs. And occasionally, I’d notice he’d fake peed simply because he wanted me to take him home.
#9: Your Dog Has a Urinary Tract Infection or Other Medical Condition
While dogs can certainly pretend to pee as a way to reap rewards or get more time outside, the root cause of the behavior could be down to an untreated medical condition such as a urinary tract infection, bladder stones, or a tumor.
When a dog is dealing with one of those conditions, he may struggle to urinate which in your eyes may appear as though he’s fake peeing.
Some common side effects of a UTI include straining to urine, urinating very often in small amounts, and blood in urine.
Take your dog to a veterinarian straight away if you suspect he may have a UTI or another health condition. It’s important to take this seriously to avoid letting symptoms progress.