Kneading Behavior in Dogs
While many associate kneading behavior with cats, many dogs also engage in this habitual action. Puppy as well as adult dogs exhibit this instinctive and habitual activity. Some instances may be harmless while others could potentially damage your home or garden. There are ways to prevent your pup from engaging in any destructive digging activities as well as manage kneading behavior if it becomes destructive.
Female dogs that are pregnant or in the process of breeding will use their paws to manipulate bedding and objects in an effort to build a nest for their newborn pups, often sucking to keep her babies warm and cozy. Although this behavior is good when applied during breeding and birthing processes, adult dogs displaying similar traits may prove problematic.
Some dogs use kneading or digging as a way of marking their territory, similar to what cats do with scent glands and their paws transferring the scent through. As with cats, scent is transferred via their paws when digging or kneading to let other animals know this area belongs solely to your pup! While all breeds can exhibit kneading behaviors, this behavior is most prevalent among working breeds such as Border Collies, hounds such as Dachshunds as well as gun breeds such as Springer Spaniels and terriers like Westies – sweet and sensitive natured pups more likely engage in this behavior than their counterparts!
Sometimes dogs may knead or dig to reduce stress or anxiety. This is particularly likely if they begin chewing up items when left alone and destroy items without being seen to. When this is the case, it’s essential that owners speak to their veterinarian about using calming medications to ease your pup’s anxieties.
One reason your pup could be acting out may be they feel abandoned or lonely; to help alleviate their sense of abandonment or loneliness, spend quality time with them and provide lots of toys and activities they enjoy. Dogs suffering from separation anxiety may benefit from behavioral modification training with an experienced trainer; this will teach alternative behaviors which will reduce anxiety when left alone.
Last, some dogs engage in this behavior as part of their bed time ritual, kneading or digging at their favorite plush toy, blanket, or bed. While this behavior is typically harmless, it could become problematic if your pup begins sucking up bedding items or damaging other belongings in their home. To address this behavior safely and prevent further destruction to bedding items and furnishings in your home. For this reason, place a crate or kiddy pool in their bedroom, or provide them with a cool place outside when necessary during summer. If this doesn’t work then consult with an animal behaviorist who can teach alternative behaviors which help relieve their anxiety when left alone – like alternative behaviors such as kneading and digging behaviors instead that will help relieve their anxiety when left alone.