Everyone wants to know the answer to the question, why is my dog sniffing so much? The fact is that dogs sniffing is as American as apple pie. Everyone’s dog sniffs at things, especially during walks and when puppies explore the world for the first time. If you know even a bit about dogs, you’ll know that they have a keen sense of smell- the best comparison is that dogs smell the world the way that humans see the world. But sometimes your dog might start sniffing at things a bit too much or too often. If your dog sniffs every few steps during walk, it might be a concern for god owners. Or your dog might be walking around and sniffing your yard for what seems like hours. Is there something wrong? The odds are, there’s probably nothing wrong with your dog. Dogs love to spend time sniffing, gathering information about their surroundings. However! Stress and possible health problems can lead to non-stop sniffing, so don’t ignore it. Let’s discuss a bit more below.
It's All About The Nose!
One of the things to remember is the reason that dogs love to sniff things. From puppy to adult dogs, the best of every dog’s sense is their smell. Dogs have up to 300 million scent receptors in their noses that lead to the dog’s brain. That’s compared to a measly 6 million in a human! Dogs can smell things to a degree that we humans can’t even imagine. A simple dog sniff in the air might detect animals hundreds and hundreds of yards away. In the case of some hounds, they have a dog’s nose that can track for miles. No matter the breed, dogs sniff to get a sense of what’s going on around them. Other animals like humans can differentiate smells, but a pup has a sense of smell that dog owners can only dream of. One of a dog’s love is sniffing things that most humans would find pretty disgusting. But dogs aren’t just smelling for the sake of it- they use their sense of smell for everything from finding food to communicating with other dogs. The main reason might be to gross you out, but we’ll never know…
When your dog is constantly sniffing around, they are in the course of trying to figure out what’s going on around them… Thinking, Where did that cat go? What’s that new dog down the street doing? Where did that squirrel go? Is that some food? Sniffing is how dogs learn about their surroundings- the animals, and the people in it.
So if your dog has taken up excessive sniffing as of late, most dog owners have no need to worry. The odds are that they’re just trying to get to know their world a little better- it’s one of the most common reasons why dogs sniff around. Your dog’s behavior is totally normal if they spend a few minutes with their focus on a single spot just sniffing around. They might look a bit goofy, but they don’t need your rescue! although you can always with some training to quit excessive sniffing around. However, make sure you keep a tight grip on your dog’s leash in case he or she smells a cat and wants to sniff after other pets!
But Why Is My Dog Suddenly Sniffing Everything?
If your dog goes from sniffing around every once in a while to constantly sniffing everything, there could be a few reasons:
Nearly any environmental change can cause your dog to start sniffing up a storm. It’s because your dog is trying to figure out what’s going on, and smell is the best way to find out. It might be the changing seasons, or a big change like moving from one house to another. If your dog starts sniffing around like crazy, think about whether his/her environment has changed. If so, then you’ve found your reason for all that sniffing. Your dog should stop once they are comfortable in their environment.
Catching a whiff of a new scent might also make your dog start sniffing around. Usually this is because of a new pet or visitors at your house. But even changing your washing detergent for your clothing can give you a new scent and make your dog start sniffing around.
A common behavior when a dog is anxious is to sniff around. Sniffing around due to being anxious will often be accompanied by pacing around, walking in circles, or whining. If this happens, pay attention to what’s going on. It could be a thunderstorm, or it could be something more serious. Consult your vet if this type of behavior goes on for long.
Need a Long Dog Leash To Let Your Pup Sniff Around?
Ready to let your dog sniff around the yard? Or maybe you want a nice, leisurely walk? Check out my favorite super-study, super LONG dog leash below. You can buy them in 100ft length! If I’m feeling a bit lazy, I can just sit on the ground in a lawn chair and let my dog sniff to his heart’s content while I keep an eye on him.
No Harm In Exploring!
Dogs rely so heavily on their sense of smell, sniffing is an important part of everyday behavior. So if your dog is sniffing around, remember that your dog is just exploring the world, maybe going for a leisurely walk. Don’t stop your dog from exploring and learning about the world around them, so let them sniff away of course!
However, dogs have a different, palette, let’s say, when it comes to the smells that they enjoy. Some of the most beautiful fragrances to a dog are some of the most revolting smells to humans. So while you should let you dog explore and sniff away, remember to keep your dog away from stinky things that could be dangerous, like dead animals.
But so long as you keep an eye on your pup during walks, you should let them sniff around and explore with their noses as much as they want. The idea is that your dog can be exposed to their area and be comfortable in it.