Having an adorable, precious canine companion can bring lots of love and happiness, but along with the package are strange (sometimes funny) behaviors that you may find seemingly weird. One of those weird behaviors is when dogs show you their bum. Most often than not, you expect to get an exciting greeting from your dog, with his tail wagging and a face full of appeasements. However, sometimes his blissful face is nowhere to be seen, and instead, all you see is a furry bum. So why do they do it? Why do dogs show you their bum?
When a dog shows you his bum, it is actually a form of greeting known as the hip nudge. This pacifying behavior signals trust and friendliness as opposed to aggressive or rude behavior, one may think. When having his back towards you and teeth farthest away from you, your dog is showing that he does not intend to harm you, but rather feel safe around you.
With that being said, here are 6 common reasons why your dog is showing his bum to you.
Why Do Dogs Show You Their Bum?
Showing his bum is usually a sign of trust. He wouldn’t turn his back towards you if there’s no trust between you too. Him turning his back exposes his vulnerability to you, meaning Fido does not consider you as a threat. His mouth, which is his main weapon, is furthest away from you.
Dogs greet each other by sniffing butts. Why? Well to answer in short, there’s a sweat gland known as the apocrine gland located near the area which relies on a lot of information about a dog such as age, gender, health, mood, etc. Since that’s how dogs greet each other, your pooch probably assumes his special human is like-minded, even though that’s not the case.
04. Avoiding Eye Contact
While some dogs absolutely love eye contact, others do not. When your furball views you as the dominant one, sometimes he will avoid eye contact and look away. In the doggy world, direct eye contact is a sign of establishing or challenging dominance. It makes them feel uneasy.
03. Marking His Scent
Your dog loves you so much he’s claiming you his by marking his scent on you. Remember the apocrine gland we mentioned earlier? Those glands release pheromones and your dog is possibly marking them on you because he loves you! Scent marking is more common in households where there are multiple dogs and where they compete for human attention.
02. Guarding You
Another possible reason is he’s guarding you, looking after you. It is just part of his nature to guard and protect his “pack” from any danger. He may sense something is off and activate his protective side. If your dog sleeps or sits with his butt facing you, don’t be offended. He’s probably facing the door or window so he can respond quickly just in case anything happens. Whatever it is, he wants to keep you safe.
01. In Need For Some Scratching
There are some spots your furball just can’t reach, like the area right above the tail. It could be really itchy due to a flea allergy and he needs a helping hand to scratch the spot. Perhaps the position he is in when showing his bum is perfect for some belly rubs, so he’s patiently anticipating some massaging. If he has received some belly rubs before in this position, he most likely learned this new behavior, knowing he has a better chance of getting one.
Should You Allow This Behavior?
Yes, there’s no reason not to allow it. Dogs communicate in many different ways, and having his bum towards you can be one of those ways. As you can see, there are many reasons for this gesture depending on the circumstances. Regardless, it definitely means there’s a strong and loving connection between you two as he wouldn’t easily expose his vulnerability to you if that wasn’t the case.
Depending on the size of the dog, there are some instances when this loving gesture can unintentionally harm someone, especially kids and the elderly. Make sure you keep an eye and don’t push him away as this will cause confusion. If need to, try to divert his attention, by playing a game of fetch or using commands so his act of affection and trust doesn’t hurt anyone, even though he means absolutely no harm.
If this behavior is something new and you notice him scooting his bum along the ground, it most likely signals something is irritating his bottom. That something can range from skin irritations to worms. If you suspect that is the case, consult with a veterinarian to make sure it isn’t something serious.
Now that you know why your precious pooch is turning his butt towards you, it is only fair to send some love back his way. Give him a nice rub and treatos as this behavior just shows the type of unique bond the two of you share!