Here's What To Do If Your Dog Displays Submissive Urination

Bhabani wrote to me with her question about her dog and submissive urination:

She wrote: "I have a mixed-breed puppy (German shepherd/border collie mix) which is 4 months old. It's very friendly with people but when it approaches people, it urinates all-over. The same happens when I come home in the evening. It becomes very excited and urinates on the carpet. Is that a submissive behavior? How can I solve this problem?


Dear Bhabani,

Just for peace of mind, have him checked by your veterinarian to make sure the problem is strictly behavioral and isn't medically related. Once you have the results from the tests, you can start from there.

If your dog is otherwise house-trained, it is more likely a submissive behavior. You can help reduce this behavior by increasing your dog's confidence level.

Take the dog out more and socialize, socialize, socialize with other humans.

Agility training is also a great start.

Don't create as much excitement around the dog when he's known to exhibit the behavior. When you come home, ignore him until he's calm enough to greet. Is he kept in a crate while you're gone? This can help you by allowing you to come home and immediately take the dog outside to potty. By staying in the crate, he will be more at loathe to potty in it because dogs have an inhibition to using the same area as a toilet and a den.

The same goes with guests. If a guest comes over, they should ignore the dog and not fuss until he calms down. Do not correct him for urinating. Correcting submissive urination will only make the behavior worse.

About the Author: Adam G. Katz is the author of the book, "Secrets of a Professional Dog Trainer: An Insider's Guide To The Most Jealously Guarded Dog Training Secrets In History." Get a free copy of his report "Games To Play With Your Dog" when you sign up for his free weekly dog training tips e-zine at: