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Puppy Submissive Urination: are you one of those canine owners that upon returning home from work is greeted lavishly by your puppy or dog? 

Are you also one of those owners that upon finishing petting the dog ends up walking into a lake of pee?

Chances are, very likely, your pup suffers from submissive urination. No, no need to worry, the diagnosis sounds more threatening than it is. 

Basically, in your puppy's or dog's eyes you are their big boss and this is the way the dog manifests his respect for who is considered on top of the ladder.

However, do not get too excited about being considered top rank as you may end up cleaning a lot of carpets if you do not try to start doing things a little differently from now on.

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How to Stop Submissive Urination in Puppies 

Contrary to what we once thought, confident puppies aren't trying to be alpha dogs, and since we have come a long way from what we thought previously, there's no need for us to be harsh or use militaristic training methods with our puppies. 

Dog Submissive Urination
  • First of all, do not scold the puppy or dog for exhibiting submissive urination. If you do, the dog will be more likely to pee as you are basically confirming you are the big boss and he will feel the urge to confirm to you he is submissive.
  • On the other hand, do not praise the submissive urination as this will cause the dog to believe it is a good thing, and thus, will learn to urinate on cue for you.
  •  So what to do? Simply ignore the fact he is urinating. Do not scold, do not praise. Keep as neutral as possible.
  • Try to ignore your puppy the first minutes you come home. The excess excitement should dissipate as he gets used to you being back home. Then once he is calmer, ask him to sit and praise him lavishly. The fact that you tell him to sit will give him something more to think about and less time to think about creating lake Eerie in you living room.
  • If your puppy doesn't know how to sit well yet or he's too focused on giving you appeasement signals left and right, try to toss treats when you expect him to pee. This will divert your pup's attention and give him something else to do than peeing
  • Finally, take steps to not intimidate your puppy. No scolding, putting your pup's nose in his pee or poop, alpha rolls, muzzle grabs or scruff shakes. Embrace positive reinforcement training which has been proven to be the best dog training method according to research. 
  • Whether you own a puppy or a dog, try your best to encourage your dog to become more confident. Do not scold when he does wrong, but rather praise for what he does right. When you pet him, crouch down to his level rather than standing up. 
  • Let your puppy win once in a while when you play tug of war. Tell him how proud you are when you notice he hasn't dribbled pee all over your shoes.
  • Simply step up for him and sooner than later you will not have to step into his pee puddle any more!

As seen, puppies are the most likely submissive urinators out there, and as they develop more confidence, they will develop, better bladder control so the submissive urination should remain only a puppyhood memory.

 Adult dogs that still exhibit submissive urination may have been abused, mistreated or simply are of an ultra sensitive disposition. They require confidence boosters and special training. Dog behaviorists may give great advice on how to help them overcome their insecurities.

*Disclaimer: All remedies suggested are not to be used as a substitute for professional veterinary advice. If your pet is sick please refer to your veterinarian for a hands on examination. If your pet is exhibiting behavior problems please refer to a professional pet behaviorist.

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