Whiz Kid: Why Does My Dog Pee When Excited?

An excited dog jumps on someone's leg.

Those of us who have cared for dogs over the years, know that the occasional accident will happen. In puppies and young dogs, peeing can spontaneously occur when they get too riled up or excited, as they don’t have total bladder control. If you have been dealing with pee spots on the rug when your dog rushes to greet you or when they are over-enthused, you’re not alone. 

The team at Beverly Hills Veterinary Associates is here to explain the phenomenon of submissive urination and get to the bottom of your question, “Why does my dog pee when excited?”

Potty Problems

When a pet is very young and learning those important housetraining skills, they will be more inclined to have a harder time holding it. If your adult dog who has been house trained suddenly let’s loose every time they are excited or triggered by something like other dogs or people, it may indicate a medical problem. 

Uncontrolled urination can be caused by urinary tract infections, diabetes, Cushing’s disease, cognitive decline, and other health concerns. Follow up with your veterinarian if your pet is having more accidents or these episodes have come on suddenly.

Not Again! Why Do They Do It?

As long as your pet is healthy, they may display this unwanted behavior because of two situations; submissive peeing and excitement peeing. In order to find a solution, you need to figure out which one your dog exhibits:

  1. Submissive Urination

    Submissive urination occurs when a dog is skittish or uneasy around other dogs. Their posture may change, like tucking their tail between the legs, cowering, or rolling over to expose their belly. This is a behavior that happens mostly in young dogs and puppies as a way to acknowledge the social dominance of the other dog or person. Dogs who are shy or anxious also display this behavior.
  2. Excitement Urination

    Like submissive urination, excitement urination accidents tend to occur in puppies under the age of one. Smaller and toy breeds are more susceptible as well. If your dog is still young, chances are, they will outgrow this problem. Excitement urination usually happens when you come home or when your pet is exposed to new dogs or people they don’t know, but are excited to meet. 

Prevention and Training

If your pet is healthy, these behaviors can be redirected through patience and training, as well as understanding the triggers.

To stop the urination accidents, follow these suggestions:

  1. Take your dog outside to play and interact, where they can do their business outdoors. If your dog is a puppy, line the play area with puppy pads or newspaper for easy cleanup if they get too excited while roughhousing or having fun.
  2. Clean up all accidents with an enzymatic cleaner right away to avoid repeat accidents.
  3. Minimize stressors, such as loud noises and gatherings, if your pet is fearful or has a form of anxiety.
  4. Downplay the overenthusiasm when you return home for the day and take your pet outside immediately to relieve themself. 
  5. Reward your dog when they go out to potty.
  6. Don’t scold or punish your dog, as this can exacerbate the problem.

Does Your Dog Pee When Excited?

If your dog is having problems with urinating indoors, please contact us for an appointment. We are also here to answer any questions you might have about submissive or excitement urination.