Feb 15

6 Dog Behaviors That Could Mean Health Problems

Strange dog behaviors can be a sign of health problems.

If you have ever owned a dog you probably have seen some type of weird behavior. Sometimes it’s easy to overlook the behavior and think they are “just being a dog”. If you see your dog acting abnormally it is best to take note and make sure they are not having health issues. Dogs handle health hazards much differently that humans. Below is a list of strange dog behaviors and how they could be pointing to a health problem.

Eating feces

If you have ever had a puppy, I am sure you have seen it eat its own feces or feces from another animal. Sometimes they just like the smell and taste of it. In certain cases it could mean that the dog is lacking a healthy diet.


Have you ever seen a dog scoot across the floor on its bottom? It looks funny and some would laugh and say they just have an itch. In most cases it is a sign of issues with their anal sac. When a dog defecates the anal sac usually empties. Sometimes it can become impacted and get infected. This might be hereditary for your dog but could point to other major health issues like tumors, irritable bowel syndrome, and others.

Excessive Whining

Dogs naturally whine if they think they are being threatened. They will do this to let the other dog or human know they are not a threat. Sometimes they will whine if they see a human or dog they like or know. This type of whining is normal in moderation. In other cases, dogs will whine excessively. This can be a sign of separation anxiety or your dog telling you that they are in pain. The pain could be coming from any type of trauma or illness.

Excessive and/or Compulsive Barking

Dogs bark for many reasons. They could be excited, want a treat, or want to alert their owners of strangers. That is usually normal. There are many types of barking you will want to note. Some dogs bark excessively and compulsively while they run up and down a fence. Generally, you can even see a worn path. This could mean that the dog is bored and frustrated or has other more severe issues like being too aggressive or territorial. Dogs also use barking as a way to get your attention if they are not feeling well. If your dog usually does not bark excessively, they may be trying to tell you something hurts. If your dog barks excessively when you leave it, separation anxiety could be the cause.

Excessive Chewing

All dogs like to chew on things. Some like to pick their favorite bone but others wait until you are out of the house and chew carpet, furniture, clothes, shoes, and pretty much anything in their reach. This is generally due to separation anxiety and may be coupled with defecating and urinating in forbidden areas like the inside of your home.

Defecating Inside

If your dog is trained and starts defecating inside, it is usually a warning sign of poor health. Your dog could simply be having separation anxiety (like excessive chewing) or other more severe issues like tumors, parasites, anal sac problems, and irritable bowel syndrome just to name a few.

If your dog shows any sign of abnormal behavior, we can determine if it is an underlying health issue or something that needs the attention of an animal behaviorist.

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