Why Do Dogs Circle Before They Poop?

Why Do Dogs Circle Before They Poop?

As An Amazon Associate We Earn From Qualifying Purchases At No Extra Cost To You

If you'd actually paused from your back yard and observed your dog answer nature's need, you had probably pondered the question of what causes the dog to circle around just prior to defecating. Dog owners frequently shrug their shoulders in confusion when their pets exhibit the peculiar trait of circling just before defecating. Why do dogs walk around in circles before relieving themselves? This is a very interesting point to consider. Researchers who have looked into this issue have come up with a wide variety of ideas and points of view. This article will focus on the hypotheses that explain why dogs circle before they poop in the most satisfactorily way.


Usually, dogs circle before they poop is centred on four basic concepts which include keeping pests out of the way; getting the greatest area with more cleanness, leaving a mark and lastly connecting with natural magnetosphere. So far, there doesn't seem to be a correct or perfect explanation to this subject of "why do dogs circle before pooping," however we have come up with this sequence of notion as follows. Which one would you agree matches up your dog behaviour?




As a dog owner, German Shepherd dog breed named Smart, I always wonder why my adorable Smart will want to poop and just keep circling around for several times, then squirt is hind limbs and do the needful, from my experience, I’ve observed that most times Smart wants to poop, he’s so conversant of his environment. Smart is a clean dog, very hygienic; although, I trained him to be so. He wouldn’t just poop anywhere or anyhow. From my observations, I do believe he was often circle to check if the location he picks is suitable, in my large backyard there are many spots for Smart, and I also have free range poultry birds that are raised in the compound. Smart will never poop when he sees or sniffs a faecal material from any of the livestock, he will either move to a cleaner site with less grasses after series f circling. I’ve also noticed that Smart poop either facing our north poles or facing the backend of our compound which means he’s either facing north or south, I don’t understand why either but from my observations that is what he has been doing repeatedly. 

Why Do Dogs Circle Before Pooping?


  • Keeping Pests Out
  • Getting the perfect spot
  • Leaving a Mark
  • Syncing with natural magnetosphere

Keeping Pests Out

It is possible that dogs circle before going potty in an attempt to chase away any animals. There are other different types of animals that live in grasses, including venomous snakes, crabs, and irritating bees. Dogs might thus have indeed been able to rid the grasses of any possible invasive species which would have been dangerous by brushing it over with their paw and circling. Dogs are considered to be particularly defenceless while they poop, and this could constitute a serious hazard to dogs. 

Getting the perfect spot 

Another hypothesis examines the importance of cleanliness to a dog's wellbeing. It is possible that perhaps dogs in this scenario is going in circles in order to trample the grasses in order to avoid getting into a "messy circumstance." There seems to be a probability that somehow this behaviour is being exhibited by the dog. Due to the fact that dogs do not rinse their anal region, the faeces 

have a chance of being entrenched in the grasses and then spreading out across the dog's fur.

Leaving a Mark

Dogs will "mark" their territories by leaving behind an odour that is uniquely theirs. This may be the result of their urinating all over anything, or it may be the result of them leaving a faecal bombshell afterward. We humans find it revolting, but other canines use it as a method of determining feedback about one another based on the scents they exude. Thus, if dogs defecate in the grasses, they are communicating something to themselves by doing so. However, there are smell receptors between canine toes as well. Therefore, if they walk all around the field before defecating, it will make an impression that will be noticed by other dogs.

Syncing with natural magnetosphere

This hypothesis may be the theory which appears as being the most far-fetched, and it is infact supported by a great number of empirical investigations into the reasons why dogs circle before defecating. According to the findings of a number of research, dogs appear to have a strong connection to the subtle waves produced by the nature's magnetosphere. This knowledge was obtained over the course of several years of research in which dogs were observed in great detail. The overarching conclusion drawn from this research was that it is more natural for canines to defecate with their backs to the north to south axis. Very unusual, yet there are also a few animal species that have this exact trait. In addition to dogs, other animals such as cattle, reindeers, and wolves appeared to demonstrate a similar presentation whether at rest or during active grazing.

Concluding words

To this day, there have been no conclusive and straightforward explanations for why dogs defecate in circles. However, from a purely visual standpoint, dog poop is more easily located if the lawn is trampled all around it in an effort to get rid of tall or erect grass, visualising pests or other small creatures in the area, tagging the location by leaving odours behind, and connecting to the nature's magnetosphere.

Dr Marvelous Ibiniyi, DVM

A pet enthusiast and young veterinarian in the making, who loves writing and giving educative information about pets especially dogs and cats. Dr Marvelous has a German Shepherd dog named Smart and likewise a Persian cat named Rolex.

Back to blog

Leave a comment