Dogs just love grass – eating it, smelling it, and rolling in it. While it might seem like just another random puppy behavior, there are several reasons behind your dog’s fondness for grass- and most of them revolve around scent. So, if your dog is rolling in the grass, they might be picking up a smell, covering up a smell, or trying to leave their scent behind.
It’s an instinct
Grass is covered in various scents – from other animals, humans, or even the rain. Rolling around in the grass is a way to rub those scents into their fur, which, for a dog’s ancestors, was a great way to conceal their natural scent and remain incognito while on the hunt for prey.
It’s a territorial thing
Just like what they do with their new mat, your dog could be rolling around on the grass in an attempt to add their scent and mark their territory, or sometimes to add their “signature” for the next dog that comes around. You know, kind of like “I was here” etched in grass.
It’s their way of showing they’re happy
Of course, your dog might just be feeling really good, and what better way to show it than a good roll in the grass while enjoying the sensation? Nothing wrong with that.
It’s all about that nose
The canine nose is a very sensitive thing and, while humans might only smell the grass, your dog sniffs the grass and smells a whole menu of different things. If they like what they’re sniffing, they may want to rub it on, just like a human might do with a perfume sample. They might also want to get rid of the unwanted smells stuck on their body. After a deep inhale, your dog might be wondering, ‘What’s this? Last night’s banana!? Gross!’ and crave a cleansing roll around the grass.
Your puppy has more than 220 million olfactory receptors in their nose, compared to only five million in humans. Now, imagine how irritating it must be to detect even the slightest odor in the room. It may just be too much for them to process.
It’s the perfect scratching board
Itching may be another reason why your puppy is rolling around in the grass. Allergies, fleas, or bug bites are all possible explanations behind a dog’s need to propel themselves into a grassy area, hopeful that a good roll will relieve that itch.
Believe it or not, some dogs have obsessive-compulsive personalities. Rolling in the grass might just be their way of expressing their excitement in certain situations.
Be aware of where your dog rolls around
While grass seems fairly harmless, be aware of where your dog rolls around. Some lawns have high levels of pesticides, herbicides, and fertilizer that could be poisonous to both you and your pet. Ticks, fleas, and other bugs are often found year round in tall or mid-length grasses, and bacteria, viruses, and parasites could be lurking in the dirt below.
Always be sure to keep your pup up to date on vaccinations, and flea and tick prevention medicines, while being aware of possible reasons your dog likely enjoys rolling around in the grass.
How to stop your dog from rolling in the deep
Animal behaviorists suggest distracting your pup from the green stimuli by calling them back to you or redirecting their attention to an object, animal, or person- whichever excites them more. While this task may seem a bit overwhelming, the time you’ll save on having to bathe your dog could make it worthwhile.
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