Help! How To Stop My Dog From Peeing On My Bed
When you’re adopting a dog or buying your first puppy, you hope never to have to Google:
“How to stop my dog from peeing on my bed”
And yet here we are. There’s no shame in it! You’re in the right place.
In this blog post, we'll explore the reasons behind your dog's bed-wetting habit and practical tips to stop it.
Let's dive in!
Why Does My Dog Pee on My Bed?
Before we dive into tips for stopping this behaviour, let’s identify what might be going on with your dog. Here are several factors that may contribute to this problem:
Dogs can suffer from incontinence due to underlying health problems.
If your dog suddenly starts peeing indoors when they are typically well-house-trained, this should raise alarm bells.
A dog with a UTI will likely pee more frequently and struggle to hold it.
If you see any of these symptoms, consult your vet to rule out any medical issues.
Anxiety and stress
Ever noticed that your dog is a little more on edge when things are stressful?
Dogs are sensitive creatures. They can react to changes in their environment or routine by exhibiting regressive behaviour, such as peeing on your bed.
Major life changes, separation anxiety, or the introduction of a new pet can all set off your pup.
We will talk about how to quell your dog’s anxiety in the next section. But I will say, don’t punish your dog for having a crazy moment when things are crazy.
If you’ve just moved house, and their routine is disrupted. If you’ve started leaving your dog at home on their own, they need to adjust to this new reality. (2)
It’s okay for mistakes to happen. When things settle down, your dog will also settle.
Puppies and newly adopted dogs may not be housetrained yet.
Even established dogs moving into new spaces can struggle to get their bearings.
That means there’s a higher chance of accidents happening in the home.
Dogs are known for marking their territory.
Unfortunately, your bed may be a prime target for this behaviour.
This is doubly true for dogs that are not desexed.
This is because scent marking is directly correlated to mating behaviour.
It’s not just in-tact dogs that engage in territorial behaviour but they are far more likely to scent in the house than other dogs.
As your dog gets older, several undesirable behaviours can crop up.
Loss of bladder control is one of them.
They may not be able to hold it as long as they used to, leading to accidents. So it’s important to give your dog more frequent trips to go to the toilet during the day and night. Peeing on your bed may be a cry for help.
How to Get Your Dog to Stop Peeing on the Bed - 10 Tips
Now that we've explored the reasons behind your dog's bed-wetting, here are some practical steps you can take to stop this behaviour.
1. Consult a veterinarian
You’d think an article about your dog peeing on the bed by Gentle Dog Trainers would start with training techniques.
But in my experience, it’s best to rule out the dangerous stuff first.
If your dog has suddenly started peeing on your bed or if the issue seems persistent, you need to rule out any underlying medical conditions.
When it comes to bladder and kidney issues, the sooner you catch them, the better.
It doesn’t take long for a benign UTI to turn into more serious kidney issues.
Consult your vet to ensure your pooch is in good health.
If a medical issue is the cause, a short course of medication or surgery can often resolve incontinence. No training needed.
2. Keep your dog out of your bedroom
A very simple preventative measure to stop your dog from peeing on your bed, is to not allow them into your bedroom.
I know there’s a debate about whether dogs should be allowed on beds. But if bed-wetting is becoming an issue, it’s worth preventing access completely.
At least until you have bolstered your dog’s housetraining and you feel confident that your pup won’t continue to soil your bed in the future.
Speaking of housetraining…
3. Revisit housetraining
Housetraining is the first step in preventing bed-wetting accidents for newer canine members of the family.
The housetraining steps you’ll take will depend on your dog’s age and how long you’ve had them.
For example, a new puppy will be starting from scratch.
You’ll need to establish a consistent routine for bathroom breaks and reward your dog for going outside to pee and poop.
Crate training can also be helpful, as most dogs won’t soil their confined space.
If your dog is already house-trained but stress could be throwing them off, revisiting housetraining will look different.
You’ll need to pay attention to your dog’s toilet habits and positively reinforce good behaviour. Tackling the anxiety at the route is also a key factor. Let’s talk about that next.
4. Reduce stress and anxiety
If stress or anxiety is the culprit, create a calm and secure environment for your dog.
The techniques you use here will depend on what the cause of stress is.
- If you have a new pet or baby: spend quality time together and create a quiet space for them
- If you’ve moved house: introduce your dog to the home slowly and consider pheromone diffusers
- If a specific object or person is causing stress: try gradual exposure to the stressor or remove the stressor entirely
These are just a few ideas but time is a great healer for anxiety. With positive reinforcement and a calm soothing voice, you can help your dog adjust and get back on track.
5. Establish a bedtime routine
Dogs benefit from a bedtime routine just as humans do.
Here are some quick tips:
This can help reduce the likelihood of night time accidents.
6. Use protective covers (while training)
While you’re reinforcing housetraining techniques, invest in waterproof mattress and pillow covers to protect your bed from accidents.
These covers are easy to clean and can save you from having to replace your mattress.
They also reduce the likelihood of the smell lingering which is a key factor for repeat accidents – which leads to...
7. Clean thoroughly
Ever noticed that your dog always seems to pee and poop in the same places?
This is because of the smells left behind.
When accidents happen, it's crucial to clean the affected area thoroughly to remove any lingering odours.
Use a pet-safe enzymatic cleaner to break down the urine scent.
8. Increase obedience training
Basic obedience training can go a long way in curbing unwanted behaviours.
Commands like "sit," "stay," and "leave it" can help you control your dog's movements and prevent them from approaching the bed when they shouldn't.
General obedience training strengthens your communication with your dog which leads to easier housetraining too.
If your dog is not spayed or neutered, consider discussing the option with your vet.
“It is generally accepted that neutering is most likely to influence behaviours that are directly influenced by sex hormones. In male dogs, these include unwanted sexual behaviour including mounting, indoor urine marking, roaming and some cases of aggression to other entire male dogs”. – The Veterinary Nurse (3)
Spaying/neutering can reduce territorial marking behaviour.
10. Book a professional dog trainer
If you’ve tried all the tips and you’re at your wit's end, it’s time to call in the pros.
A professional dog trainer can help you figure out what might be going wrong and give you tailored advice to address the issue.
Final Thoughts: Stop Your Dog Peeing On Your Bed
Though your dog peeing on your bed is frustrating, remember they aren’t doing it to spite you.
So keep calm and focus on addressing the underlying issues that could be causing this behaviour. Over time and consistent positive training, you’ll manage to stop your dog from peeing on your bed.
Is pee a problem in your household? Check out our other articles:
The best way to clean dog pee is to use an enzymatic spray cleaner. The enzymes will break down the urine and prevent any lingering smell.
There are a wide variety of reasons why dogs pee on couches and beds. They include:
- Urinary medical conditions
- Increased anxiety
- Territorial marking
- Incomplete housetraining
You shouldn’t scold your dog for peeing on your bed. They are unlikely to associate the behaviour with the reason you’re scolding them unless you catch them in the act. Instead, focus on positively reinforcing peeing in appropriate areas like pee pads or outside.
- Weir, M., Downing, R. “Urinary Tract Infections (UTIs) in Dogs”. VCA Hospitals. Retrieved September 17, 2023. https://vcahospitals.com/know-your-pet/urinary-tract-infections-utis-in-dogs
- Schade, V. December 7, 2022. “How to Help a Dog With Separation Anxiety”. PetMD. Retrieved September 17, 2023. https://www.petmd.com/dog/training/how-help-dog-separation-anxiety
- Warnes, C. April 2, 2018. “An update on the risks and benefits of neutering in dogs”. The Veterinary Nurse. Retrieved September 17, 2023. https://www.theveterinarynurse.com/review/article/an-update-on-the-risks-and-benefits-of-neutering-in-dogs