A black and white Boston Terrier standing next to a puddle of piddle looks a little frenzied

There are few things more joyful than a dog that’s happy to see you. But a whipping tail, floppy tongue, and dancing paws may conceal an embarrassing truth. If your dog pees when excited, you’re not alone. This issue is actually quite common among younger dogs, those that are newly adopted, or ones that simply need a bit more training. 

In other words, this behavior, while certainly inconvenient, can definitely be handled with patience, understanding, and support.

Not Again!

The first time your dog pees when excited, you might find it a bit funny. Repeated episodes, not so much. It’s natural to get a little flustered, or even upset, but try to keep as calm as possible. Without meaning to, your reactions could actually reinforce the behavior.

Where to Start

The first thing dog owners should do when dealing with spontaneous canine urination is to have their pup checked out. Once we rule out medical conditions that can cause inappropriate urination, we can move forward with a plan to combat the behavior.

Various Explanation

You could have a dog that simply lets go of urine when excited, or you could have a pup with submissive peeing problems. What’s the difference?

  • Excitement – When your dog pees when they first see you or someone they really, really enjoy, or during play, they are simply releasing urine because they’re happy. Most dogs grow out of this behavior as they age, but you can make sure they don’t leak on the floor by greeting them outside. Likewise, be sure they’ve fully emptied their bladder before you know something big is about to happen. Touch can be a trigger for urination in excited dogs. Position yourself in such a way that guards against a high-touch reunion or play scenario. If there is an accident, downplay it. When they’re outside when they pee, give them loads of praise and a treat.
  • Submissive – Some dogs deal with the world around them by acting submissive. In other words, if they are scared, shocked, suspicious, or anxious about their surroundings or the individuals around, they may urinate in response. Likewise, if they are punished, scolded, or accustomed to rough treatment, they may soil unexpectedly. Unfamiliar animals or those that are intimidating can elicit the same reaction. Keep an eye out for other signs like cowering, tucking the tail, hunching over, or flipping over to show the belly.

Dog Pees When Excited

Addressing the needs of a dog that pees when excited include the following methods:

  • Never scold or punish them.
  • Stay calm when greeting your dog. Avoid eye contact, crouch down to their level, and stay neutral. This may seem cold, but not giving them attention during moments that lead to excited urination can end the behavior.
  • Take them outside and give them treats after they urinate.
  • Sign your dog up for obedience training. 
  • Give them extra opportunities to run and play.
  • Instruct guests to stay calm when popping in. Their energy can lead to unexpected soiling. 
  • If/when they do pee excitedly, clean up their mess without a fuss.
  • Consider products like Adaptil that can help calm dogs in anxious situations. It’s a safe pheromone that comes in a spray, collar, or plug in.

Please let us know if your dog pees when excited. Our staff  at Highway Veterinary Hospital is always here to help you and your dog live your best life together