Why do dogs roll in the grass?

Why do dogs roll in the grass?

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Many dogs have the cute habits of rolling in the grass, but not many pet parents seem to know why their furry friend does this. If you are one of them, don’t worry, because today we are going to share with you all the different reasons why dogs roll in the grass.

What is more, we’ll go over the basic steps you have to follow if you want to stop your dog from rolling in the grass. Although it represents no harm for them, you might want to stop this cute behavior due to different reasons, so we’ll make sure you have all the tools you need to successfully stop your dog from rolling in the grass.

Reasons why dogs roll in the grass

Mask their scent

As you’ve probably guessed by now, most of the reasons why dogs roll in the grass has to do with the dog's sense of smell and how they use it to communicate with other pups. And as many dog behavior’s do, this one has to do with the fact that pups evolved from wolves. 

Wolves were hunters that used different tools to capture their prey, one of them being masking their scent. They needed to disguise the prey so they wouldn’t smell them coming. They accomplish that task by rolling on, for example, grass and dirt. By doing so, they covered up their own smell with the scent of the grass. 

When dogs roll in grass, they might be rubbing its scent into their fur. What is more, our scent of smell isn’t able to notice it, but the grass scent isn’t the only one that can be found, it can also have the smell of other animals, humans, and other dog’s pee. 

Our pups are probably not going to hunt any prey during their daily walks to the park, but it’s common for dogs to have habits that their ancestors used to have, such as howling at sirens.

Mark a spot

As dogs may roll in grass to rub off their own smell, they can also do it to add their own scent to the grass. But why would a dog want to add its own smell to the grass? Well, for the same reason they kick at the ground after pooping, to mark their territory.

They leave their scent to communicate to other dogs that that’s their spot, or even to just let them know they were there. 

Covering up a scent

Has it ever happened to you that your dog seems to be more eager to roll in the grass after you bathe them? This is no coincidence, and no, they are not doing it on purpose.

Dogs might roll in grass or dirt because they don’t like smelling like whatever cologne or shampoo you use on them. They don’t feel comfortable smelling like that, so they roll in the grass to pick up any other scent that will make the other one go away.

So the next time your pup rolls in the grass after a bath and you want to get all angry at them, remember that they are just doing it because they don’t like smelling like flowers. It is like smelling bad for you, you wouldn’t want that, would you?

Because they like it

Dogs might also roll in the grass because it just feels good. If your pup seems happy and relaxed while doing this, there might not be any other explanation for their behavior. They are just having a great time.

Dogs can like the feeling of the grass on their back, it’s like their own personal scratcher and massager. 


Dogs can also use the ground to scratch an itch they can reach with their paws, specially on their back. If your pup does this occasionally, there’s no need to worry, but if you see that your pup is constantly scratching itself, you’ll want to look into it. 

You can tell that a dog is rolling in the grass because they’re scratching themselves because they will not only do it in the grass, but on any surface that feels good enough for them. This might include your house floor, dirt, the sidewalk and even their bed.

How to stop your dog from rolling in the grass?

As mentioned before, if your dog is constantly rolling on any surface, this behavior should be taken into consideration because it might be a sign of skin allergies or fleas. If this is the case, make sure to take your dog to the vet.

If you have a pooch that suffers from skin allergies, you should give them an omega-3 supplement that will prevent and control its allergies. 

You might also want to stop your dog from rolling in the grass if they are doing it in places where there’s poop or, even worse, dead animals. If that’s the case, the best thing you can do is to use a positive reinforcement technique.

When your dog is about to roll in the grass, redirect their attention to something else and reward the “good” behavior with their favorite treat.

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