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Old May 3rd, 2001, 07:47 PM
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Question:

Please help This is a gross one!!!

When I take my dog for runs in the dog park she often comes across dead animals (birds, small rodents etc.)
I'm guessing there are some cats that play in this area when the dogs aren't around.

When she finds these animals she immediately starts rolling around on them and she won't stop till I pull her away. This is gross stuff, I'm afraid she'll catch a disease or something. What's going on here?

Thalie

Answer:


Hi Thalie,

This is a 'Normal' dog instinct for certain dogs. This is a throwback to the early days of wild dogs before they were domesticated. In order to survive they would need to stalk and kill their prey. In order to hide their own scent they would roll around in many disgusting substances so that they could approach their prey undetected.

It is often difficult to rid dogs of these strong instincts.
Try running around the dog park with your dog on a long long leash. When she exhibits the undesirable behavior, give her a light tug with a strong NO! Be consistent and do this often during the beginning stages. Eventually remove the leash but watch your dog carefully, again giving the loud NO! if she regresses.
Hopefully your dog will learn that this is inappropriate behavior.

Good luck,

Samantha Green
Dog owner and breeder for over 20 years
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