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Dogs Who Kick Up The Grass After They Pee Or Poop All Share An Adorable Personality Trait

Photo: Jamie Street / Unsplash
cute dog sticking tongue out

If you’re a dog owner, you’ve probably noticed that your furry friend has quirky habits. Some dogs howl along to sirens. Others bury their food bowls with their snouts, despite the fact that their kibble is safely protected in your kitchen. 

You may watch your dog make one particularly funny move while on walks, and it turns out there’s a good reason why.

Dogs who kick up grass after peeing or pooping share an adorable personality trait.

When a dog kicks up dirt or grass after they go to the bathroom, it can be a sign of them marking their territory. But the act of kicking serves friendlier purposes, as well, which date back to when dogs were undomesticated, yet still fully adorable beasts, living on their own in the wild.

As dog trainer Garret Wing explains on Instagram, kicking up grass is a “classic sign of what we refer to as a cocky dog.”

Dogs who kick up grass after peeing or pooping are “strong and confident,” and you're a good pet parent for raising them that way.

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Here are three other reasons why dogs kick after they do their business.

1. They’re leaving a message for other dogs.

According to the American Kennel Club, dogs kick around after peeing or pooping to let other dogs know who they are. The pads on dogs’ paws contain glands, and those glands release pheromones that last longer than the chemicals in the waste they leave behind. When dogs kick grass, they’re using their perfect paws to spread their scent around the yard. By spreading their scent, your dog is leaving other dogs a smelly little calling card.

tiny dog sleeping in owner's lapPhoto: Kateryna Kassiopeya / Pexels 

The glands in their paws are part of a complex network of communication, allowing your dog to be aware of other dogs in their area. 

2. They’re keeping other dogs safe.

Back in the olden days, when dogs didn’t wear sweaters or sleep in beds that perfectly fit their bodies, dogs living in the wild were responsible for fending off any prey that might harm them. 

woman holding up a dachsundPhoto: Dominika Roseclay / Pexels 

A dog who kicks up grass around other dogs is doing their job to protect the species. If another dog comes to the spot where your dog has just been, that pup can smell the surrounding area and know that they’re not in any present danger.

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3. They’re showing other dogs who’s boss.

The act of kicking grass around spreads those doggie pheromones far and wide. It’s a way for one dog to tell another, “Hey, I’m here, and I’m amazing.”

As shown by one adorable Maltese puppy named Teddy, who moonlights as a pet influencer, dogs use both their front and back paws to make an impression. Teddy’s owner noted on an Instagram reel that the behavior is Teddy’s way of showing other dogs — and his human — who’s in charge. Spoiler alert, it’s Teddy.

So the next time you take your dog for a sniffy walk, let them kick to their heart’s content. They’re sending the message that they’re the best and that you’re the best pet parent ever, for raising them to be so confident. 

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Alexandra Blogier is a writer on YourTango's news and entertainment team. She covers the inner world of pets, pop culture analysis and all things to do with the entertainment industry.