It is understandably distressing to have your dog urinate or pee on your bed, either by accident or on purpose. She may do it in her sleep – or she may do it while you’re watching. It is not a great situation either way. Assuming your dog is not a puppy (puppies are an entirely different chapter!) and has been house-trained, here are the possible reasons she may be peeing on your bed:
8 Reasons Your Dog Might Pee On Your Be
There’s a Medical Issue
If your dog has suddenly started urinating in your bed or other area inside your house, it’s a good idea to get her checked out by a vet. The cause may be a urinary tract infection, bladder stones, diabetes, kidney disease, or other medical disorder that needs a vet’s expertise to diagnose and treat.
Your Dog Gets Over-excited
If your dog tends to jump, wiggle and run around excitedly, he may accidentally pee inside the house – including in your bed. Find ways to calm your dog, especially when it’s time to hit the hay and turn out the lights. Work on getting her attention on YOU, via some disciplinary exercise with a treat at the end. One that has worked well for us is as follows……..”Rosie…SIT….good girl”….(put your finger to your nose and there is a small treat in that same hand)….”Rosie…look at me! (hold her attention as you count 1-2-3) then softly offer her the treat. You just “changed the conversation” where she is focused on you, not herself. It’s worth a try; worked great for us!
Your Dog Can’t Control His Bladder
Sometimes dogs become incontinent – they have trouble controlling their bladders and find themselves with sudden urges to go, or leak involuntarily (often while they’re asleep). Elderly dogs and larger dog breeds tend to have this issue, and it can be a sign of diseases like urinary tract infections or diabetes. Some of the other causes of incontinence include:
- Lesions on the spinal cord or brain
- Overactive bladder
- Urinary tract infections
- Chronic inflammatory disease or arthritis
- Kidney disease
- Neutering (not commonly a problem)Again, be sure to make a quick visit to your veterinarian who can diagnose and treat your dog to help him gain control over his bladder.
He Wasn’t Properly House Trained
If you have a rescue dog, it’s quite possible he wasn’t given formal house training, or that he’s forgotten whatever he did learn. You may need to start over and make sure he understands that any place within the house is not his toilet. The exercise in item #2 of this write-up may help. Also, it house training is an issue, it’s a good idea to keep your dog in a relatively confined area since dogs generally do not pee in “their own space”. As he responds, you can experiment with enlarging his area.
She Is Excessively Submissive
If your dog displays submissive behavior, it may be a sign of fear or anxiety. Typical actions include rolling onto her back and exposing her stomach, flattening her ears, cringing, not meeting your eyes – and pee’ing constantly on the floor or bed. Submissive behavior can also be the culprit when your dog is over-anxious to please you. As with separation anxiety, visit the vet and/or dog behaviorist for help. Also, consider experimenting with the training method “with finger on the nose” (outlined in section # 2 of this article) along with a treat as a reward. Observe your dog’s behavior to see what circumstances trigger this submissive behavior and try to find opportunities to desensitize your dog to those triggers. Be patient. Change may happen slowly but will be so rewarding as you see those changes!
He’s Marking Territory and Establishing Himself as the Alpha
On the opposite side of submissive behavior is a dog’s need to be dominant. When a dog marks inside the house, it’s possible the marking can be aimed at other animals in your house. This may not be because your pup feels intimidated, he may be marking areas of the house to tell other pets to stay away.
We, personally, had an example of this. We adopted a thin dog from Animal Control. She was estimated to be 10 months old. She was unruly and clearly had NO training. Four months later, she was a different dog. She had put on weight but her manners still needed work. Then, she began peeing in the house! Our Vet established that there was no physical problem and recommended a dog trainer.
Over the phone, the dog trainer nailed it! He said – she is now well established in your home and she thinks that she is the alpha of the house. She demonstrates this peeing whenever and wherever she feels like it. We immediately limited her to the mudroom unless she was right under our noses and took a much more strict approach to her — without being cruel.
The peeing stopped immediately. She would not pee in the mudroom because that was her “space” and dogs generally don’t pee in their space. We worked on her obedience with the dog trainer. We have never looked back! Kind but firm discipline is still an everyday activity. She’s still a pup– that’s life! Moreover, because she is a big dog and we have 13 acres, we invested in an e-collar which our dog trainer demonstrated for us. Life is Good!
She’s Suffering From Separation Anxiety
If your dog pees on the bed, it can be a sign of separation anxiety. Because he’s formed such a strong attachment to you, he may be upset whenever you leave the house. Typical behaviors associated with separation anxiety are barking excessively, pacing, chewing or destroying things in the house, and even pooping or pee’ing indoors. Talk with a vet, who may be able to recommend some medical solutions for this condition. S/he may also suggest seeing a dog behaviorist to help reduce anxiety levels.
The Bed Smells Like Urine
The more an object (like a fire hydrant) smells like urine, the more your dog perceives it as a place to pee. So once your dog has urinated on your bed, it may become an acceptable place to go to the bathroom.
Your dog’s hyper-sensitive nose will smell that urine even after you feel the odor has dissipated, so wash your bedding thoroughly and use an enzymatic cleaner to ensure it’s gone. (Don’t use ammonia, as that smells like urine and will make matters worse!). We tend to prefer apple cider vinegar—it’s non-toxic and is certainly strong, in a good way, to your dog’s nose!
How To Get Your Dog to Stop Peeing on the Bed
- Don’t even let Fido up on the bed and be firm with this. That’ll stop him from peeing there – but, of course, he might start urinating somewhere else inside the house, so you’ll still need to find the root of the problem.
- If you see that your dog is getting ready to pee on your bed (he’s starting to sniff and circle), immediately interrupt the process and take him outside to do his business, accompanied by lots of praise for doing it right.
- Keep him confined in a designated area unless you are able to watch him very closely.
- You can try a dog spray that contains chemicals or natural solutions (like cayenne pepper, citronella or apple cider vinegar) that will repel your dog. Of course, the smell may repel you, too! Personally we have had good luck with apple cider vinegar.
- If you’re gone all day at work or for longer periods of time, hire a dog walker or sitter come over and give your pooch a nice walk and a potty break. Having human interaction halfway through the day may help reduce any anxiety the dog is experiencing.
- Whatever you do, don’t yell at or punish her when she pees the bed. That just creates more anxiety, which makes the problem worse and increases the chances she’ll do it again.