Happy to see me

Posted by ZibaFarhadian
Jul 22, 2010
I recently rescued a one year-old small mix-breed dog and brought her home. She is responding well to instructions on where outside to do her business and has easy access to the ouside area. However, when she is excited to see me, or afraid of anything, she sits down and pees. When she is happy, she wags her tail so strongly that she pees even if she just did it outside five minutes ago. How can I help her ?
Posted by KOPCaroline
Jul 25, 2010
Hi Zeba,

Good question, excitement urination is a relatively common issue with dogs, I see it a lot in vet clinics and when dogs meet new people and other animals.

First off, you should try to limit how intense seemingly exciting situations get. When you come home, try ignoring the dog for the first 5-10 minutes or so. Say hello, but don’t pet her or play until she’s calmed down from your arrival. Speak in easy, soft, calm tones, and don’t encourage her to get worked up. Praise her when she’s quiet around situations where she is normally worked up. If you have friends or family over, ask them to do the same. Basically you want to make exciting things less exciting.

It’s basically the same for fearful situations. Talk in a calm, soothing voice, and don’t baby talk her. This leads a dog to feel reassured in their fearfulness, and makes them more likely to continue the behaviour. Try and avoid situations at home you know will scare her, and with unavoidable situations, train her by counter-conditioning and deference. This means exposing her to “scary” things (probably outside at first, to avoid urine in the house) and getting her used to them gradually. Praise all good responses, ignore urination and her getting frightened, or give a stern “no” command to settle her.

Overall training her with various tricks will make her a more confident and focussed dog, leading to a likely decrease in the excited urination. Spend a few 10-15 minute sessions with her daily to teach her new things (sit, stay, down, shake, roll over, whatever you want, really )

If it doesn’t get any better, take her to a vet. There could be an underlying health problem, like bladder sphincter tone loss or a urinary infection.

Good luck!