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If you’ve ever invited guests into your home only to have your excited dog leave a puddle of urine in the entryway, you aren’t alone. Most commonly seen in puppies, excitement urination is triggered by overstimulation and excitement during greetings or play sessions. Different than submissive urination or inappropriate urination caused by a medical issue, a dog who experiences excitement urination will display loose and wiggly body movements without signs of fear, stress, or anxiety, including cowering, tail tucked between the legs, ears back, hiding, yawning, or lip licking.

Once our team has ruled out a medical condition and you’ve determined your dog’s inappropriate urination is caused by excitement, you can take the following steps to help prevent it:

Greet appropriately — Allow your dog to initiate contact with you when she’s ready, and don’t react to inappropriate greetings, including jumping or barking. Avoid direct eye contact and threatening body posture, including leaning over her. Teach her the “sit” command and do not pet her or give her any attention unless all four of her feet are on the ground. Once your pup is sitting and calm, approach her from the side, crouch to her level, and use a calm, soft voice.

Relax — When you arrive home after work and greet your pup with a high-pitched screech that the neighbors across the street can likely hear, you’re contributing to her overstimulation. Try to keep your interactions with your pet calm and relaxed (even if you’re excited on the inside).

Keep it positive — Never reprimand your dog for inappropriate urination. Instead, provide treats and plenty of praise and affection when she urinates where she’s supposed to.

Is your canine companion inappropriately urinating? Call us, so we can rule out a potential medical cause or any anxiety issues that may be contributing. With patience and persistence, your pup’s puddles will soon be a thing of the past.