Dogs who are easily excited and very happy to meet people may occasionally lose control of their bladders and urinate. This is not to be confused with a housetraining problem. Dogs who excitement pee most likely aren’t even aware they are doing it. For this reason, punishment is not advised as it will be ineffective. There is also the chance of teaching the dog to be afraid of that which he so much enjoys.
To differentiate between excitement wetting and submissive wetting, consider the circumstances and the dog’s posture. Excitement urination is the diagnosis if the behavior occurs:
- When the dog is greeting a person or other dog
- During play time
- While the dog is wiggling and bouncy
Excitement wetting is most common in puppies but dogs of any age may engage in it.
To prevent excitement urination, keep greetings calm. The excitement-wetting dog needs no help in becoming overly stimulated, he needs help with self-control. If necessary, ignore your dog for the first few minutes that you are home to give the pup a chance to calm down before you greet him. If your dog urinates when meeting people on the street, ask if they would mind just standing still for a moment and allowing the dog to sniff them before saying hello. It might also help if you have the dog sit before he is greeted.
Dogs that are a wiggling, jumping bundle of energy when their families come home may need a little extra help. Try tossing a toy or playing tug for a minute or two before actually petting or speaking to the dog. This helps to use up some of that energy while also getting the dog’s focus on something other than how happy he is that everyone is together.