Why do dogs walk in circles?

April 13, 2012

There are different reasons why a dog may walk in circles. The reasons range from behavioral to medical. If your pet begins to walk in circles, you need to assess the situation and take proper action.

A dog may walk in circles as a nesting activity before sleeping. A dog will also circle before pooping to prevent from pooping on the spot recently chosen by another dog. A dog may begin walking in circles if the dog is penned for too long. A dog that is fearful or stressed may continually circle in its space.

If a dog begins to walk in circles suddenly, there can be a medical problem involved as the cause. Infection, ear disease, parasites and illness and medical conditions can cause a dog to walk in circles.

A dog may begin walking in circles because of ear problems. Infection and irritation in the ear as caused by ear mites or an ear infection can cause a dog to favor one side when walking. Vestibular disease, which becomes more common as a dog ages, causes a dog to walk in circles.

Parasites, systemic lupus erythematosus, encephalitis, canine distemper and fluctuating blood sugar levels may cause a dog to walk in circles. Brain tumors, also called meningioma, can cause a dog to walk in circles. A dog may walk in circles because of neurological problems, such as seizures.

When a dog begins to walk in circles, it can indicate a problem ranging from behavioral to medical. As a dog owner, you should be alert for any changes in your dog’s normal behavior. Your dog relies on you to help keep your dog healthy and if your dog begins to walk in circles, you must seek out proper medical treatment to discover the cause of the abnormal behavior.

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