Explained: Why Do Dogs Spin Around Before They Poop

It’s a common sight to see—your pup running around in circles before he finally decides on the perfect spot to do his business. But why exactly do dogs spin around before they poop?

Did you know that dogs roll in poop too! Isn’t all this behavior very “dog”-gone surprising!

We take a look at why your four-legged friend might be exhibiting this behavior.

Why Do Dogs Spin Around Before They Poop?

Dogs spinning before they poop is a phenomenon that has mystified pet owners for years. But there are several scientific explanations as to why this behavior occurs.

1. Territorial Marking:

Dogs spin in circles before pooping to literally mark their territory and announce their presence with scent.

When dogs spin, they spread the area with their own smell, which can act as an effective deterrent against any predators or intruders who might be in the area.

In addition, by spinning around multiple times and leaving behind a stronger odor, the dog is also making it easier for other dogs to pick up on his scent when passing through the same spot again later on.

2. Psychological Comfort:

The spinning motion may give psychological comfort to the dog and may help him relax before he goes about his business.

This kind of behavior is likely a survival instinct from their wild ancestors, who would have had to spin around in circles.

This is to make sure that their area was clear of any dangerous predators before they could go about relieving themselves.

3. Better Defecation Posture:

Dogs will often spin around so that they can achieve a better posture for defecating.

By spinning around several times, dogs create an optimal positioning for when it’s time to poop.

4. Grass Preferences:

Some dogs will spin around multiple times before pooping in order to find the right type of grass to poop on.

Spinning around gives them the opportunity to more easily identify a certain type of grass that they prefer, such as one that is softer or coarser than the others.

5. Displacement Activity:

Finally, spinning before defecating may be an example of what’s known as a “displacement activity” – which is when an animal performs a seemingly random action (in this case, spinning) when it is feeling anxious or under stress.

This behavior may be an attempt by the dog to distract itself from whatever is causing it anxiety, and may also help it relax enough to go about its business.

Other Reasons Why Dogs Spin in Circles

Dogs spinning in circles is a common behavior that leaves owners scratching their heads. While it may seem like an odd and endearing quirk, there are actually several reasons behind this tail-chasing activity.

1. Joy & Excitement:

Dogs spin around when they’re feeling especially happy and excited about something – be it food, treats, or even just seeing you come home from work.

So take some time to appreciate your pup’s enthusiasm!

2. Stress Relief:

Contrary to the first point, dogs can also spin as a way of relieving built-up stress (because all that excitement can be exhausting).

If your pup has been particularly antsy lately, watch out for signs of circling.

3. Searching for Comfort:

If your dog has recently been in a stressful situation, they may be trying to find comfort in the familiar by spinning around or tightly tucking their tail.

You can help out with this one by providing them with a snug spot for downtime.

4. Hunting Instincts:

Have you ever noticed your pup sniffing around before they start circling? It turns out that dogs spin around as part of their hunting instinct – just like wolves do!

So if you happen to have an adventurous pup, prepare yourself for some wild tail chasing from time to time.

So there we have it; four reasons why dogs love spinning around in general.


At the end of the day, spinning in circles is simply another way for dogs to exhibit their unique personalities and behaviors.

If your pup does this every now and again, there’s probably no cause for worry – he’s just feeling excited, searching for comfort, or trying to satisfy his inner hunter!

Dogs also kick after pooping, but that’s normal behavior.

So let him be; it’s all part of being a dog.

Besides, any pet owner can appreciate an adorable tail-chasing scene every once in a while. After all, who doesn’t love to see their furry friend having fun?

Enjoy these precious moments with your pup!

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