Why Dogs Urinate in the House

Some dogs don't see a problem with urinating on your carpet and then running outside to play a game afterward. Others feel ashamed for doing their business in the home but have no way of controlling their bladders. Sometimes something as simple as house training will do the trick, while in other cases a car ride to your vet might be in the plans.


For most dogs, the sound of thunder or the sudden bang of a firework will make them scurry under a bed or into a corner for safety. Usually urinating is not part of the process, but dogs that are extremely scared of certain stimuli, such as thunder, may inadvertently urinate while shaking and huddled in a corner. The remedy for your fearful pup lies in helping him realize that scary situations aren't that scary, certainly not scary enough to urinate over. Introducing the pet to the stimulus that produces his fear -- such as low thunderous noise -- and then rewarding him for not reacting negatively will eventually teach him that the thunder or other noise is OK.

Improper House Training

Dogs that haven't been properly house trained think the leg of your couch is as good as the trunk of a tree. These types of dogs usually never warn you they need to go outside and don't have a problem with just relieving themselves in the middle of your rug while you're watching the television. Older dogs are considerably more difficult to housebreak than puppies, but the methods remain the same. Take them outside after every feeding, before bedtime and when they wake up. When your pup goes to the bathroom outside, make a huge deal of it: Praise him and give him lots of treats. If you notice he's about to relieve himself inside, say a sharp "Ah" and quickly redirect him to the door. Try to get him outside if you can.

Too Long Holding It

Healthy adult dogs usually don't mind holding it when you're on an 8-hour work schedule, as long as you let them out right before you leave and as soon as you return home. Senior dogs need to go out more frequently than younger adult dogs, and requiring them to hold it all day is definitely too much to ask. If your dog's still in its puppy stage, it can usually hold it in for as many hours as they are months old, plus one hour. Asking a neighbor or friend to let your dog out once during the day -- or more often if you have a puppy -- will help keep the cleaning products put away instead of on the carpet every day.


If your poor pooch never relieved himself in your house before but is suddenly doing so prior to or immediately after he lets you know he has to go outside, he may be suffering from urinary incontinence. Medical problems, from birth defects in younger dogs to bladder infections, cause incontinence. Senior dogs frequently experience incontinence due to their aging bodies. Your vet is the go-to solution provider for incontinence and can prescribe your dog medicine to help control the embarrassing situations.

Submissive Urination

If your dog turns your carpet yellow when you crouch down and try to pet him or when another dog comes near him, you have a pup that practices submissive urination. While some dogs might lick your face or wag their tail to show they don't mean harm, some believe urinating is the best way to show their submissiveness. The best way to prevent submissive urination is by never seeming too intimidating. Kneel down at your dog's level when you greet him, never over his head, and avoid direct eye contact. WebMD suggests throwing a few treats in front of him when he greets you and never touching him on the head or ears. Direct your petting to his chest area.

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