Dog Peeing While Walking? 9 Possible Reasons & What To Do

A cute, little Beagle puppy walking toward the camera while enjoying a walk on a grassy hill.

Walking your dog is not just about exercise — it’s a chance for bonding and socialization. However, if your dog is peeing while walking, it may indicate an underlying medical issue or behavioral problem. In this article, we will explore nine possible reasons why your dog might be peeing while walking and provide guidance on what to do in each scenario.

Reasons for Urinating While Walking

Understanding the underlying reasons for your dog’s behavior is crucial in helping them regain bladder control. Here are some possible explanations:

1. Submissive Urination

Submissive urination occurs when a dog pees out of fear, confusion, or as a display of submission. This can happen when they encounter new people or situations. Signs of submissive urination include flattened ears, refusal to make eye contact, a tucked tail, lying on their back, or cowering.

To address submissive urination, be patient and avoid punishing your dog for accidents. Introduce them to new people and situations gradually, offering treats for good behavior. Taking shorter walks more frequently can also help alleviate stress.

2. Urinary Tract Infection

Urinary tract infections (UTIs) can cause dogs to lose control of their bladders and experience more frequent urination. Symptoms of a UTI include sudden loss of bladder control, whining or howling while urinating, blood in the urine, and urinating in the house even if housebroken.

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If you suspect a UTI, it’s essential to consult a veterinarian. They may prescribe antibiotics and recommend offering plenty of fresh water to flush out the urinary tract. Adding a teaspoon of apple cider vinegar to their bowl can also help kill bacteria.

3. Urinary Incontinence

Urinary incontinence occurs when a dog can no longer control their bladder. It is common in aging pets and can be caused by certain illnesses. Signs of urinary incontinence include the inability to control urination, urine leakage or dribbling, and frequent urination in small amounts.

Treatment options for urinary incontinence may include dietary changes, anti-inflammatory medications, or medications to strengthen the muscles in the bladder walls. Consult with your veterinarian to determine the best course of action.

4. Urine Held for Too Long

If your dog has insufficient bathroom breaks or walks, they may try to hold their urine for too long. When the bladder reaches its limit, dogs may start peeing while walking without stopping to squat or lift a leg.

Signs that your dog is holding their urine for too long include urinating as soon as the walk begins, distress and anxiety before walking, and urinating during every walk. To address this, increase the frequency of bathroom breaks and encourage your dog to urinate before starting the walk.

5. Overly Excited

Some dogs lose control of their bladders due to excessive excitement. They become so focused on their surroundings that they forget to control their bodily functions.

Signs of excessive excitement include jumping, spinning, wagging their tail vigorously, and running back and forth. To manage this issue, introduce your dog to new situations slowly, keep them calm, and consider obedience training. Engaging them in a vigorous playtime before the walk can also help drain their energy.

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6. Marking Behavior

Dogs may urinate while walking to mark their territory, especially male dogs. Signs of marking behavior include peeing on objects, lifting their leg higher than usual, sniffing around before urinating, and urinating frequently during a walk.

Neutering is the most effective solution for marking behavior. While marking is a natural instinct, neutering can reduce the urge to mark territory.

7. Ectopic Ureters

Dogs with ectopic ureters are more prone to incontinence and urinating while walking. Ectopic ureters are a congenital abnormality that affects the bladder and can lead to frequent urination and urinary tract infections.

Symptoms of ectopic ureters include bloody urine, urine leakage, frequent urination, and incontinence. If your dog is exhibiting these signs, a veterinarian should diagnose the disorder, and surgery may be necessary for treatment.

8. Estrus

Female dogs going through estrus may struggle with controlling their bladders due to swollen genitals. This can lead to frequent and accidental urination while walking. Additionally, some females intentionally urinate while walking to attract potential mates.

Signs of estrus include personality changes, changes in appetite, swollen genitals, anxiety, restlessness, tail tucking, and bloody discharge. During this time, providing attention, comfort, and using a diaper can help manage the situation until the estrus cycle is over.

9. Lack of Bladder Control in Puppies

Puppies may take several months to learn full bladder control. If you have a young puppy that is peeing while walking, it is likely due to their developing bladder control.

Signs that your puppy may not yet have full bladder control include not being housebroken, peeing without warning, urinating in inappropriate places, and incontinence. Establishing a consistent training routine, being patient, and avoiding punishment during potty training can help your puppy gain control faster. Crate training can also facilitate the process.

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Is It Normal for a Dog To Pee While Walking?

Close-up of a purebred Akita

No, it is not normal for a dog to pee while actively walking. If your dog is peeing without pausing for a bathroom break, it could indicate fear, excitement, marking behavior, or an underlying medical issue.

Why Is My Dog Leaking Urine All of a Sudden?

If your dog is leaking urine without deliberate urination, it could be a sign of a urinary tract infection or incontinence. It’s important to have your dog evaluated by a veterinarian to determine the underlying cause and initiate appropriate treatment.


If your dog is experiencing urination issues while walking, it is crucial to consider both medical and behavioral causes. Consulting with a veterinarian will help rule out any medical issues, while proper training can address behavioral causes effectively.

Remember, providing a safe and supportive environment for your furry friend is key to their well-being.

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