Why Is My Dog Peeing in the House and How to Stop Them

Is your dog making the inside of your house a maze of wet spots and pungent smells? Sometimes even a longtime house-trained dog can regress and begin routinely relieving themselves inside your home, wrecking your carpets and your peace of mind. Experts have identified several triggers for this behavior and also have recommendations for correcting dogs peeing in the house. You don’t have to live with ruined carpets and smelly floors.

Your dog could be peeing in the house for a number of reasons, medical or behavioral.


When your dog reverts to this behavior, it’s in response to some issue. Often, the introduction of a new child or new pet into the home may upset the dog, who begins to have accidents as a result. Strangers, such as workmen, may cause your dog some confusion or distress as well. Even the smell of a new carpet can inspire your dog to mark it and make it familiar.

Health problems are often behind this issue. Female dogs can have bladder control issues due to low estrogen levels, especially if they are spayed or older. Some medications can cause this problem as well as serious medical issues like tumors and kidney disease. A trip to the vet can determine if a physical issue is causing the problem. If not, you need to focus on the behavioral issues that can cause a dog to urinate indoors.

There are many reasons why your dog may be urinating in the house.


Training or retraining your dog to relieve themselves outside will require some diligence on your part. Try taking the following steps to alter your pet’s behavior and protect your home and your sanity.

Watch for Peeing Signs. Dogs usually have obvious “tells” before they relieve themselves. Watch your dog closely and intervene if you see them sniffing the floor, cocking their leg or even just circling. Get them outside pronto and keep them there until they do the deed. Then, lay on the love and praise. They need to associate outside urination with your approval.

Interrupt the Act. This one sounds messy, but if you make a loud noise when you catch them, they may stop peeing inside long enough for you to get them outside. Don’t let them continue or punish them afterwards. Get them outdoors and then praise them for finishing the job there.

Remove the Smell. As a dog owner, you know that dogs who urinate in the house will return to the same spots over and over again due to the smell. Their urine contains an enzyme that powerfully marks the spot. Simply cleaning the area won’t get rid of this special scent. Fortunately, you can use a number of homemade concoctions or retail products to eliminate the enzyme.

After taking your dog to the vet, try training solutions to stop your dog from marking in the house.

Water Spray

Sometimes spraying your dog with water when they begin peeing in the house will discourage them from this behavior. The water is unpleasant but doesn’t hurt them or browbeat them. The shock should stop their urination long enough to get them outside to finish. Then, of course, you must praise them for going outdoors.

Dogs who have been house trained since they were puppies can regress in adulthood. Sometimes, they have physical issues that need to be addressed by a vet. If they get a clean bill of health, you will need to retrain them to go outside. Punishing your dog does not work. Encouragement and praise are effective. You will have to be vigilant, but you can get your dog properly house trained again.

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  • My one -year-old Pitbull continues to pee in the house whenever we are not looking he has a doggie door and large backyard it’s driving us crazy could the fact that he is not neutered have anything to do with it we cannot seem to resolve the problem any helpful recommendations would be greatly appreciated

    • Yes. Neuter him. That should help a lot.

  • Our 8 year old also also has,started peeing indoors. Up furniture and hallway up the wall. I have tried encouraging him to go outside a lot, give treats when he comes in if weed but he seems to always do it every day now and at night time mainly

  • I have a 9month old male GSD and a 16week male GSD. They get along great. The 16 wk old is potty trained for the most part. The only problem we are having is that when the 2 are playing, he will just stop and pee. This is even if we have taken him out just 5 min before. We have never had this kind of problem in our 30+years of having dogs. Our 9month old is potty trained and only had 1 accident in the house, ever. HELP! I take the 16week out at least 1 hr, while we are home. I work out of my house. He can sleep all night without having to go out as well. He only does this when they are playing. Is this a dominance issue because they are both males? Also, they are brothers from the same parents, just 6 months apart.

  • Not helpful as my dog only does it at night no matter how many times he’s been outside he’s 8 years old and fit and well

  • My dog is 7 and just had bladder test and urine culture. The smell inside is awful on my couch blanket and front hall! He usually scratches at door but when no one around living room…he pees on same part of floor….may have to give him away to someone with fenced yard!!!

  • My problem is my dog pees in the house everytime i come home from work. Any other time she will go outside. Any advice i can get will be so helpfull please and thank you

    • Any help on this problem my female dog is 12

  • My 3yr old Maltese always urinates upstairs on the carpet when we leave the house. She has a doggy door which she will always use when we are home so she can get outside but chooses not to when she is home on her own. I dont know how to stop this.
    She has been desexed

  • Our 12 year old Shepherd passed away a week ago and our 4 year old Shepher/Malanois mix peed on the bed without
    indicating that she needed to be let outside. Could this regression be a sign of grief? How do you retrain? More
    frequent times to go outside? The 4 year old is not showing any other signs of grief such as loss of appetite or not wanting to play. But, the Shepherd was her constant companion and playmate since we adopted her at 3 months, so I
    want to be sure that I am not missing any needs she may have during this period with the whole family is really feeling the loss.

  • My little Yorkie is seven and he can go out all day peeing but still comes in and pees on anything in the house his bed my doors flooring carpets sometimes I can see it other times not it is really getting me down

  • the question I am asking is why dog pee when my wife go out and leave her with our son german shepherd cross

  • my 2 year old dog came from an Iranian rescue center so he doesnt know that he is supposed to pee outside how do I help with that