You’re at your wits end…
It happened again. And what if it keeps happening?
Your dog pooped in the house. Besides the stinky smell, this could also ruin the floor.
You can’t help but think,
“What’s the reason for this?”
Or, “Is my dog doing it on purpose?”
And that’s just one of your worries.
Because members of your family might be ready to rehome the dog due to this behavior…
To prevent that from happening, you need to understand what’s the meaning of this…
So continue reading to find out:
- 13 reasons why dogs poop/pee inside after being outside.
- Which health issues can make your furbaby have an accident indoors.
- Why seeing strangers can make your pooch want to relieve themselves inside.
- And this is just the beginning…
Table of contents
- Why does my dog poop / pee inside after being outside?
- 13 reasons why dogs poop / pee inside after being outside
- #1: You live somewhere busy
- #2: They experienced trauma outside
- #3: Someone punished them in the past
- #4: It’s a part of their instincts
- #5: They had poor potty training
- #6: They’re experiencing a huge change in their routine
- #7: Your dog is growing old
- #8: They were left alone at home
- #9: They have a medical issue
- #10: They are scent marking
- #11: They get distracted during potty time
- #12: The smell of their poop/pee still lingers inside
- #13: They learned it from another dog
Why does my dog poop / pee inside after being outside?
Dogs poop/pee inside after being outside because of fear. Distractions and routine change, and medical issues can cause this too. Being in a new environment will also make them mark their territory with pee. Or maybe their potty training is poor.
13 reasons why dogs poop / pee inside after being outside
#1: You live somewhere busy
Do you have a busy street in front of your home? Maybe you are near an establishment that makes a lot of noise? How about an ongoing construction within your area?
Whatever the situation is, being bombarded with stimulation can disturb your pooch. And this includes their potty time.
This is because some canines love to have privacy when they poop. It’s something that dogs and humans have in common when it comes to relieving ourselves.
We close the doors of our restroom. Okay, maybe not if our dogs follow us to the bathroom. Then we don’t mind. But that’s it.
But let’s look at another situation…
Some of us are a bit uncomfortable when someone walks in while we use a public restroom. This applies to some dogs as well.
When people roam around the area where a canine usually poops, the pooch may not like it.
Pooping is an activity that makes your pooch vulnerable. And this can make them feel a bit stressed out.
“Do they really feel this way sometimes? My dog seems to be happy most of the time.”
According to Dr. Weir dogs can become stressed, too. Here are a few signs that they’re becoming uncomfortable:
- Standing rigidly.
- Panting heavily.
- Change in the appearance of their ears and eyes.
Hiding is also another symptom of getting stressed. And this can happen while your dog is about to poop.
When this occurs, it can make your pooch relieve themselves inside your house.
#2: They experienced trauma outside
Dogs are naturally curious beings and will be snooping around when they’re outside. However, this curiosity can sometimes be the cause of their fears.
Interacting with an unfamiliar object or animals can leave a bad mark on your dog. Sometimes these mini contacts they have with the outside world can even hurt them.
For example, if you live in a house with a forest nearby, foxes may enter your area. Now, these animals are generally harmless but it’s possible for the fox to attack your dog.
Squirrels and rodents can also startle your pooch while they’re outside.
And to make matters worse, it can happen while they’re pooping. This can make your dog associate relieving with traumatic memories.
Some dogs even experience being hurt by passersby – this makes me mad just thinking about it. How people can hurt an innocent fur baby is beyond me. But, it does happen.
And it can change a dog’s view of the outside world. A paper suggests that Canine PTSD does exist. Its effects on dogs are similar to how PTSD manifests in humans.
Here are a few symptoms of Canine PTSD:
- The reluctance of doing tasks they’re trained for.
- Avoiding objects and people that trigger bad memories.
- Mood changes e.g. anger, depression, and hyperarousal.
If this is the case in your pooch, immediately check for physical trauma. They might have been hurt outside and have wounds and bruises that are hidden.
Check out next: 7 Weird Reasons Why Your Dog Is Acting Scared + Tips
#3: Someone punished them in the past
This is closely similar to #2 since this reason is fear-driven, too. But, in this case, it can be caused by your family members. Or sometimes by you.
Now, I’m not saying that you’re hurting your pooch.
But there are some fur parents, who still subscribe to punishing dogs. Maybe they heard from someone else that it is an effective way of training canines.
This is just not true. According to the VCA, positive reinforcement is a better training method. This technique will increase the chances of your pooch doing things you want.
Now, if in the past someone did punish them for relieving, it can make them hide the act.
What I mean is, your pooch might think that for humans, peeing/pooping is bad. And therefore, they must do it in secret.
Where else would be the best place to pee and poop while being hidden?
Yup, inside your home.
This event can also happen in new dogs.
After adopting a puppy, it’s normal for parents to let them explore the house a bit. Maybe even give them a drink.
Then suddenly, the doggo just raises their leg and pee on the carpet.
A new pup still doesn’t know where to pee and poop, right?
So they’d just go wherever. Some fur parents’ reaction would be to scream, “nooooo”. If they were in a movie, the yelling would be in slow motion. Arms flailing around and distorted faces.
Small actions like this towards your pooch can affect them. That’s why fur parents like us need to be mindful of our interactions with our babies.
Note: When using positive reinforcement, it is best to avoid punishment, too. This way your pooch won’t associate any bad memories with you. Creating a more loving and caring environment for them.
#4: It’s a part of their instincts
There are some actions dogs do that are instinct-based. These are behaviors that have been passed down from their ancestors.
Take note that your fur baby’s predecessors lived in the wild.
So most of the instinct-based behaviors you’ll see are ones that ancient dogs did to survive. They do it to protect limited resources and help other members of their pack live.
Now, even if they don’t have to do those actions anymore, there are still remnants of their past.
Examples of these would be:
Another action would be keeping their play area clean and free from foreign objects. According to Adrienne Farricelli, dogs do not like to poop and pee in their living spaces.
If your pooch was trained to play outside in the yard, chances are they won’t dump there. It’s their natural inclination to keep it clean.
That’s why they might see your house as a good option for pooping and peeing.
This will more likely occur if their potty training was a bit shaky – something I’ll discuss in #5.
#5: They had poor potty training
Have you ever half-heartedly gone to a practice? Maybe you were an athlete? Or had you joined a performance when you didn’t have the back pains of an 80-year old?
If you answered yes, then you know how it feels to perform or play with insufficient training. Kinda flimsy and it feels like you’re just not there, right?
Dogs are the same way, too. If their potty training weren’t good, there’s a high chance they’ll forget it. All the time spent in training them to poop and pee outside will be wasted.
Not only that, your pooch’s intelligence will be misused too.
According to research, dogs have the ability to understand human words. Impressive, right?
Now, put this intelligence to good work and properly potty train your pooch. You’ll be better off spending time now than cleaning poop and pee in the future.
Here are a few easy steps on how to potty train your dog:
- Establish a routine for your pooch. Canines are well-known to thrive on having a schedule. This way they’ll know there’s time for eating, playing, resting, and pooping.
- Take them out after they wake up, eat, or drink.
- Next, you’ll need to pick a spot where they’ll poop and pee. Bring them there on a leash when you notice that they’re about to relieve themselves.
- While they’re pooping or peeing, say vocal cues so they’ll associate it with the action. Here are examples:
- “Go poop.”
- “Pee now.”
- “Go potty.”
- After they do their business, give them praises and rewards. Treats would be a good place to start.
- Repeat this process until you’ll notice them pooping and peeing on their spot outside.
It would also be beneficial if you give your pooch a regular feeding schedule. This way you can predict the time when they’ll go.
You can also take their feeding bowls away when they rest at night. This can lessen the chances of your fur baby having an accident inside your home.
#6: They’re experiencing a huge change in their routine
Dogs thrive on routines. They are able to function well if their day is already planned out.
Not that dogs whip out their planner and check their calendar. But, their internal system will remind them what they’re usually doing at a given time.
They remember when it’s time to eat. Their playtimes will approximately be at the same time of the day too.
Your pooch will also poop and pee at the schedule you trained them. Especially if you’ve given them a consistent time of when to do these tasks.
Now when something happens that disrupts these routines, it can stress them. It can be either of the following:
- Death of a fur sibling.
- Their parents passed away.
- Traveling to a location with a different time zone.
When dogs go through changes, it can also disrupt their internal calendar.
Even slight alterations in the schedule that don’t happen to them can still have an effect. Research shows that when a human changes their sleep-wake cycle, it can affect their dog.
I find it fascinating that something as small as this can alter their internal clock. Now imagine the huge life-changing events listed above and how it can affect your pooch.
Another symptom of stress is a change in behavior according to PetMD. One of the possible aspects in their life that will be affected is their pooping schedule.
Tummy problems can also arise if your pooch is stressed. Diarrhea and digestive issues can affect a dog’s ability to poop and pee in their designated areas.
You might also be interested in: 9 Reasons Why Your New Puppy Isn’t Eating Or Drinking Much
#7: Your dog is growing old
Much like humans, dogs’ bodies also deteriorate when they grow old.
The once happy, cheerful, and energetic pooch you have will soon be tired and gray. This isn’t necessarily something to be sad about.
In my P.O.V., having an old dog is a sign that you’ve been an excellent parent. One who showered them with love and care.
And because of you, they were able to reach old age.
However, at this point in their life, they’re going to be needing special attention. Their muscles and joints are already weak so your dog might need assistance moving.
And this also extends to their potty behavior.
The reason why this happens is because of canine cognitive dysfunction or CCD. It’s when your pooch already has a hard time accomplishing simple tasks like:
- Climbing up the stairs.
- Crawling out their doggy door.
- Playing intense games with you.
Remembering where to poop and pee is also another task your dog will have a hard time doing.
Simply put, CCD is closely similar to Alzheimer’s Disease in humans
Research suggests that this illness is prevalent in dogs who are 14 years old and above. A whopping 18% of the senior dogs had CCD.
And as they grow older, the worse it gets for them. The number of CCD cases increases to 80% when a dog is already 17 years old and above.
If you have a senior pooch, take extra steps to care for them.
When it comes to their pooping habits here are easy tips you can do:
- Limit the space where they can move around. Seal off areas where they need to climb or jump down.
- Put potty pads in the place where they’re allowed to go. In case of an accident, it would be easier to clean.
- Be more patient with them. They really can’t help it when they just poop on the spot.
Doggy diapers would also be good for them. Amazon’s Basics Dog Wrap, Disposable Diapers is an excellent choice for this.
#8: They were left alone at home
Okay, there’s nothing wrong with leaving your pooch at your house.
As long as you provide them with food and water. Or maybe even hire a dog sitter to keep them company. And access to their potty place outside.
All these things seem pretty obvious, right?
I mean, if a fur parent is thoughtful and caring, surely they’d think of this ahead of time. Especially if they’re going to be out for a long time.
Some of us lead busy lives. There’s bound to be emergencies at work.
Or some personal errands that need to be done ASAP come up. And when it comes to a point where you need to go, it’s best to be prepared.
However, some fur parents, largely new ones, seem to forget simple things like this.
And if you are a newly minted mom/dad of a fluffy canine, you might make mistakes like this. Don’t worry, it’s perfectly normal.
Here are a few simple reminders you need to take note of:
Reminder #1: Determine the places where they can go. Seal off locations where it might be dangerous for them to be if they’re alone. These are places where accidents can occur such as:
Reminder #2: Leave them a food-dispensing toy to keep them busy and a bit distracted while you’re out. Having a filled water bowl on standby would also be good.
Reminder #3: Leave potty pads in the areas where they are allowed to go. This way, they’ll have access to a pooping and peeing place. And cleaning up will be easier for you.
You may also wonder: 13 Reasons Why Dogs Cry When You Leave + 7 Tips
#9: They have a medical issue
If your pooch is house-trained and is still a young fluffy baby, then pooping inside is unlikely. That’s why it can be baffling if they do have accidents inside.
As mentioned earlier, routine changes can also disrupt their pooping schedule. But if they’re not experiencing this, then you should consider checking their health.
There are disorders in dogs that can make them lose control of their bowels.
It creates a disturbance in their stomach that causes discomfort and pain. Kinda like the disturbance, Luke Skywalker felt when Darth Maul resurfaced.
While their pooping wouldn’t be as intense as lightsaber fights, it can still be a hassle.
Cleaning up and making your home smell good after they poop and pee is a lot of work. And more importantly, your fur baby is in pain.
Examples of medical issues they might be going through are:
- Kidney stones.
- Liver problems.
- Bladder infection.
- Addison’s disease.
- Cushing’s syndrome.
- Dietary allergies or reactions.
Adrienne Farricelli says worms are more likely to cause bowel movement issues. The most common ones according to the AKC are:
“Well, how do I keep my pooch away from these?”
Dogs can be infected by eating something with infectious eggs. If your pooch also has frequent contact with rodents and birds, these can infect them, too.
Keeping your home free from fleas will also be beneficial for them. These parasites can carry eggs and will infect your pooch.
#10: They are scent marking
Did you recently have a visitor at your home? Were they in contact with another dog while they were outside?
How about you, do you pet a lot of dogs if you’re out for a quick walk?
If yes, then it’s possible that you or a visitor brought another dog’s scent into your home.
Smelling another canine in their space can make a dog go crazy. It can drive them to scatter their own smell in the area to “mark” it and claim it as their own.
This behavior is pretty common in canines. Research shows that dogs use scents to communicate with other canines.
And part of the messages they “send” is, “Hi, this is my territory… I already peed on this.”
Peeing can also be an indicator that your pooch is welcoming another canine.
Or, you know, vice versa… they got peed on. This can be why your pooch sometimes smells like pee.
Here’s a visual example of a dog interacting with another canine’s scent mark.
Now, if you just came from outside petting other dogs, their pheromones might’ve attached to you.
It could spread throughout your house. Maybe even on your dog’s own bed.
This can make your dog go crazy or maybe even worry about their safety. Especially if the scent they smelled is that of an aggressive canine.
Scenarios like these can cause your pooch to “claim” their territory back. And they do this by peeing around your house.
Look, you may not notice it when you touch another dog, but your pooch will. Pheromones normally wouldn’t be caught by a human’s nose.
However, a dog’s sense of smell is far better than ours.
You might also be interested in: 9 Reasons Why Your Dog Pees On You + 5 Tips To Stop It
#11: They get distracted during potty time
If you have a super curious dog, then pooping and peeing outside can be a problem. Especially if they’ve been kept inside your home for an extended period of time.
Being able to go out and see lots of things can bombard the dog with information. They might smell new scents and see new dogs walking around.
The grass could feel good on their skin when they played on it.
Look at this fluffy pup enjoying the outdoors:
This situation is called “overstimulation”. This usually occurs when a dog has been far away from the outside world.
And because of this, they get frantic and excited when they finally go out.
Due to all the distractions, your dog sometimes forgets that they were about to poop or pee.
After playing outside for a while, they go back to rest and suddenly feel the urge to go potty. And since they hold it while they’re out, they won’t be able to control it.
To avoid this, you need to socialize your dog and keep them active. Especially if they are working dog breeds such as:
- Great Danes.
- Siberian Huskies.
- German Shepherds.
- Bernese Mountain Dogs.
#12: The smell of their poop/pee still lingers inside
As mentioned earlier, scents are very valuable to dogs.
Their keen sense of smell is widely known and used in law enforcement. They can trace small hints of illegal drugs and bombs.
And this is also the reason why your pooch still pees and poops inside your house.
“Wait, what? How is this related to smell?”
Here’s the thing. Remember what I said earlier about dogs loving routine? Well, they apply this to their potty places, too.
Whenever they decide that a spot is where they should go, they return there.
This is especially true if they’re not properly potty trained. Or if you just transferred to a new house and they didn’t know where to poop and pee.
Now, unfortunately for fur parents, it can be frustrating if they decide to potty inside the house. They’ll just keep returning there every day to relieve themselves.
Unless… you clean it up real nice and leave no trace of their potty’s smell.
How to properly clean up poop
Here are a few simple steps suggested by PetMD to help remove poop and pee smell:
- Use a scraper to remove their poop on the floor. Be mindful when dealing with wet accidents on carpets and couches – it can spread.
- Leave the spot to dry overnight. You can use fans to redirect the air out to a window and improve the smell inside.
- The poop should be a little solid the next day. Scrape it again.
- Then create a mixture of the following in a bowl:
- 2-3 drops of dishwashing soap.
- 3 oz. (88.7 ml.) white vinegar.
- 16 oz. (473 ml.) water
- Let the mixture stay on the spot for 3 minutes. And using a folded thick towel let the liquid absorb.
- Pour more mixture and let it dry until the stain and smell goes away.
#13: They learned it from another dog
Another reason why your pooch potties inside is because they saw someone else do it. They might’ve learned it from their sibling who had poor training and had bad pooping habits.
Passing knowledge to younger dogs is pretty common in their species. And it’s nature’s way of making them survive longer.
Their predecessors already went through trial and error. And they already know which behavior is essential for living.
But this learning process can also extend to pooping behaviors. And if your pooch picks it up from an untrained dog, well, you already know what happens next.