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This is one of those, I wonder why questions, that many of us have asked over the years. As you may imagine there really isn’t a simple answer to this age-old question.
However, let me give you some possibilities that may help answer this question for you.
They’re ensuring their safety
The circles allow the dog to get a good view of the surrounding area to make sure there are no threats or predators nearby while he is in his most vulnerable state.
He’s marking his territory
Dogs like to tell their fur friends who they are and where they’ve been so they use their scent glands (a.k.a. anal glands) to leave a scent that will stick around long after you’ve cleaned up after them.
Likewise, dogs like looking for scents from other creatures to see who else has been in the area.
He’s trying to put it all in motion
Some people say that the dog is going in circles to help stimulate the intestines to help bring on a bowel movement. Yes, there is a theory that the dog, with its circle dancing action, is actually helping to stimulate the need to go to the bathroom.
He’s scoping out a clean place to go
Your dog is stamping down the grass and chasing away any bugs or other creatures to give him a nice, clean place to poop or pee. Dogs, like humans, want a clean and hygienic place to do their business.
It may have to do with “the universe”
Now don’t laugh about this one but there is also a theory brought on by researchers at a university in Prague that says dogs line their bodies up with the earth’s magnetic axis. Sounds crazy, right? Well, like all kinds of other wacky research what’s actually crazier is they actually spent 2 years and who knows how much money conducting this research.
Keep in mind not all dogs do the circle ritual and it appears that not all dogs do it every time they need to go. If you have a dog that circles, it is just part of the norm for dogs.
My sweet Destiny, the circler
My pug, Destiny, made me crazy with her circling. Honestly, she circled so much I thought she would get dizzy and fall over. And it was without fail. I don’t remember a single time she didn’t go round and round before finally going to the bathroom. And for her, it was poop or pee, didn’t matter. She had to circle.
She was actually the only dog I’ve ever had who did that so religiously. That’s Destiny.
Unfortunately, she crossed the rainbow bridge in November due to stomach cancer. She was the sweetest dog I’ve ever known and I miss her every day, circling and all.
Not to worry
So why does your particular dog do the circle dance before doing its business is probably still up in the air? However, it is not a behavior you should be worried about.
Probably the biggest issue is for you to help your dog find the exact right location by simply keeping moving until that perfect spot is located. The worst part is getting him or her to hurry so we can get in out of the rain or snow or cold or heat. Give your pooch plenty of time to do their thing. You get the idea!
A little something for you
If you would like to have direct access to a professional dog trainer so you can get answers to questions like this and even get A to Z assistance with dog training, click here to check out Brain Training For Dogs Training your dog is a great way to bond and dogs loves the one on one time with their humans.
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