Most dog owners are well aware that their dogs have certain unsavory interests, but that doesn’t mean canines are unilaterally excused from basic etiquette. Butt-scooting, humping, and drooling are all part of the pup package, but drinking from the toilet is one dog behavior that continues to elicit mixed reactions.

If you’re like other dog lovers out there, you may be wondering when to simply shake your head (but allow this dog behavior to happen) and when to become worried about the risks. Let The Pet Experts help you figure it out!

Product Placement

A consumer can feel overwhelmed by all the available cleaning products, specifically for toilet cleaning. From blue-water tablets and sprays to deodorizers and scrubs, toilet cleaners come in all shapes, colors, and sizes. It’s all in the name of sanitation, but when you think about your dog guzzling down toilet water that’s full of chemicals, the alternative may seem safer.

The Alternative?

Of course, the other side of the spectrum is a bowl full of bacteria. Even water that looks clean may not be, and risking your dog’s gastrointestinal health isn’t the best way to find out the truth. Sure, toilet water is constantly being refreshed from flush to flush, but it’s almost always better to err on the side of caution when trying to understand or thwart this dog behavior.

The Empirical Side

So, drinking from the toilet is potentially gross, toxic, or contaminated, but none of this gets close to explaining why dogs do it. We can only guess, but observational data seems to point to these very simple truths: it’s fun and it may even taste good. Why?

  • The porcelain that most toilets are made of keeps water at a cooler temperature than most dog bowls or fountains.
  • The water moves constantly, as if it’s a bonafide canine fountain. This action oxygenates the water, resulting in a tasty, refreshing treat.
  • When they’re thirsty, dogs really don’t care where they get a drink. If you live in a house with open toilet lids, your dog will always be in luck when he or she needs a cold drink.

Curbing Dog Behavior

If you’re concerned about this dog behavior, The Pet Experts offer the following tips:

  • Keep the lid down all the time.
  • Close the door to the bathroom.
  • Use baby-safe toilet latches.
  • Purchase a new dog fountain for your pup, and keep it cool with ice cubes.
  • Train your dog not to indulge in this common dog behavior.

If you have additional questions, the team at The Pet Experts at Elmhurst Animal Care Center is always here to help.