The Wackiest Thing I Ever Did For My Dog

Recently, Kimberly, over at Keep the Tail Wagging, wrote a post 11 Ridiculous Things I Do for My Dogs. As I keep going through the memories of my time with Jasmine, it got me thinking about the whackiest thing I ever did for her.

It was back when Jasmine's body was secretly struggling with a number of undiagnosed issues.

Not for the lack of trying on our part, I must add. She was generally happy and active. While things looked pretty much ok on the outside, though, inside her body was struggling with things. In spite of her vets at the time not finding anything, I felt something wasn't right. And Jasmine felt the same way.

She started to bury her pee.

When I told the vet about it, he said it was normal. No, I said, she is not ground scoring, she is burying her pee. She tries to cover it up. He, again, said, it was normal. We went on this way to no avail.

I might have been a dumb dog owner but I knew what ground scoring was and the purpose it serves.

This was not it. And the purpose was quite obviously the opposite.

With her nose, Jasmine would push material on top of her pee in order to cover it up. Then she would sniff-check it and push some more on. She quite clearly didn't want her pee to be found and inspected. To me, that was clearly a self-assessment, indicating that she considered her pee communicating weakness, a physical problem.

This went on for quite a while. When the weather was warm, in the yard, Jasmine would push wood chips on top of it. In the winter, she would cover it with snow.

One winter night, I took her out to potty. It was cold but it rained during the day. The yard was frozen solid and the wood chips turned it into a grater.

As any other day, Jasmine was determined to disguise her pee. 

But the ground wasn't budging and she was on her way to scrape her nose raw. I tried to break the ground up some to help her, but it was rock solid. It was not going to happen.

What was I to do?

Jasmine was not going to be happy with her pee out in the open. She was not going to be able to do anything about it. I could have gotten her out of the yard but, trust me, Jasmine wouldn't forget about it. She'd sit there, obsessing, asking for the door, and the first time out she would try all over again.

The only solution I could see was fixing the problem so she'd be happy with it. But how?

Then I remembered some of the Stanley Coren's books. Perhaps, if it got marked over, that would take care of it. The idea seemed sound. So out there, at night, in the cold, I pulled down my pants and peed on top of it.

When I was done, Jasmine carefully sniff-inspected it.

And then she turned back to the house. She was satisfied! It worked!

Fortunately, the next day we got a bunch of fresh snow. And then, with a new vet, new diagnoses and a new diet, Jasmine felt better about her pee and I never had to repeat this stunt again.

Eventually, she got the to point where she was proud enough of her pee that she would indeed ground score for the whole world to notice it.

Every time she did that, I was so happy. To me that was the greatest thing ever. A sign that her self-assessment was positive. She felt good about herself and about how her body was working.

What is the whackiest thing you ever did for your dog?


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Today, Jasmine Would Have Been Ten Years Old
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Meet Jasmine


  1. This made me giggle, as I would probably have done the same. You loved her so much, it is so obvious.

    Neeko owns me, and she knows it. I pretty much do whatever she wants.

    1. It's funny because I didn't get caught LOL

      Yes, I loved her deeply, still do and will love her forever.

  2. I love you for this post Jana. Jasmine was such a lucky girl.

  3. Wow! You are such a dedicated dog parent and I love you for it. Thanks for sharing this and for describing something I'd never heard of before. :)

    1. I'd have done anything for my girl ... obviously ;-)

      I think her pee burying was indeed rare, if not unique to her. It was a combination of her health issue and the way she was very particular about everything. So she might have been the only dog who's ever done this.

    2. Nope, my dog does it too and I am trying to figure out why as it is new behavior.

    3. Connie, I'd give that a serious consideration. The natural order of things is for dogs to want to put their urine on display. Hiding it, in my experience, means they are hiding some kind of weakness that would be detectable to other dogs or animals.

  4. Can't beat that, you win for wackiest thing! I would get out of bed when my dog waked me up and sleep on the couch for a couple hours until she was ready to go back to sleep.

    1. Hi Karen. That is very sweet, but you're right, not very wacky :-)

      My prize for the wackiest thing was Jasmine who was satisfied and with an intact nose :-) And, frankly, I was a bit proud myself for finding a solution ;-)

  5. Wow, great story and so interesting what Jasmine did - I agree 100% with your assessment of it and glad you got a new vet. The weird things I've done? Oh geez, I'll have to think on that there are so many!

    1. I thought it had a clear meaning. The fact that eventually we did get her from that go actual ground scoring was a confirmation to me.

  6. What a sweet (and, yeah, a little wacky!) story. :) What a dedicated mom.

    I can't really think of anything tooo wacky. We did sleep with our mattress on the floor for about a month after our last pup had her leg amputated, so she could still easily get in and out of bed with us.

    1. Thank you, Jackie.

      Sleeping on the floor with a sick, injured, post-op dog is considered a normal routine in our house. Sweet of you to do that for your baby. How is she doing?

  7. Omigoodness! I'm so glad you found a new vet, btw. :)

    1. :-)

      Finding a new vet is easy. Finding a great vet is hard. Fortunately, we did find one.

  8. Jana, I love this! Hahahahaha love it and find that you are spot on: Finding a new vet is easy; finding a great vet is hard. Thank GOD we have a great one.

    1. Yes, unfortunately, it is. And often people don't know until things really go wrong.

  9. Some might call it wacky. I just call it love. I'd like to think I'd have done/would do the same thing... although honestly I probably wouldn't be brilliant enough to think of it. You were smart to think of it and kudos to you for being willing to do it.
    What a great story. I know you loved her very deeply and true love knows no bounds.
    Wacky things that we've done for our dogs? Oh dear, I wouldn't know where to begin. Truthfully, my husband has been the one to do more of the "wacky" things. We show equal love - he's just more fearless :).

    1. Thank you, Pam. I'm sure you would :-)

      LOL Love it that your husband is more fearless in showing his love.

  10. what ended up being wrong with her. My male dog is burying his sisters pee with his nose. It looked like it hurt him so I started researching and found this

    1. It was probably from her IBD; once we started getting things under control, she stopped doing that and started scoring the ground instead.

      It looks like what is hurting him, the pee or the act of burying it? If the ground is hard, frozen, rocky etc, it would hurt the nose, yes.

      Now, since it's a male doing it for a female, there might be a different reason but Jasmine doing this in the above article is the only time I witnessed something like that.

      How old is the female, spayed, last lab work?

  11. My female does the same thing. She's a 2 year old spayed GSD. I work at a vet so I will get her blood work done and see if it's normal.

    Out of curiosity, what did your vet think was causing her to do? What was the correlation?

    1. I couldn't not get our vet at the time take it seriously. She was suffering from IBD and hypothyroidism at the time, both of which the vet at the time failed to diagnose.

      Interestingly, once IBD was diagnosed and treated with changes in diet etc, she stopped doing that.


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