How to Eliminate Submissive or Excited Urination
Generally speaking, submissiveness is a trait dog owners yearn to find in their pets. A obedient and well-trained dog is a joy to have around. However, despite the blessings of a submissive pup, there is a potential disadvantage: Submissive Urination, also known as “Submissive Peeing.”
Submissive Peeing is normal behavior for dogs and serves as a way to communicate non-threatening intentions to other canines. Not all pups exhibit submissive peeing, but those that do usually feel either excited or intimidated.
How Do You Recognize Submissive Urination?
Postures that accompany Submissive Peeing include lowering the body, tucking the tail, and flattening the ears. Pups prone to Submissive Peeing are likely to do so during exciting activities (such as greeting new people or animals or being pet) and “scary” situations (like scolding or punishment). Submissive Peeing is more common in puppies, and retrievers are particularly susceptible.
What SHOULD I do?
Pups that submissively pee won’t immediately correct their behavior. They require patience, training, and strategic guidance from the owner. Here are helpful pointers to guide your pup in the right direction:
- Empty the bladder: Prior to exciting events, ensure your pup has ample opportunity to relieve itself. A full bladder will make it harder to hold urine.
- Ignore your pup: If your pup pees out of excitement, ignore it completely. This may seem cruel, but it has proven effective in training submissive peeing. Only acknowledge your pup when it has completely calmed down.
- Posture is everything: When your pup is calm, allow it to approach you. Avoid eye contact and crouch or squat down instead of bending over. Move your hand slowly when petting, starting low under the chin or on the chest.
- Distract your pup: Once the ignoring method shows results, use distractions to redirect your pup’s attention. For example, throw treats on the floor as your pup approaches or teach it to sit during exciting moments.
What Should I NOT do?
- Do not scold or show frustration: Never punish your pup for submissive peeing as it will worsen the problem. Instead, immediately stop petting or giving attention if you notice peeing during affectionate or exciting moments.
- Approach from the side: When necessary to approach an over-excited dog, do so from the side and present the side of your body to them.
We Humans Need Training, Too!
Since many people will be excited to meet and greet your canine friend, it’s important to inform your guests about the guidelines mentioned above before they arrive. Especially for friends or family who will interact with your pup regularly, teach and remind them to control their excitement until the pup calms down and learns to control its bladder.