Anus Behaviors Correlations

Initially, I began to notice merely that some dogs would sit on my shoe during testing. Then I would notice that sometimes this would ‘gross me out’ or disgust me, which I found interesting since I am usually not in any way disgusted by dogs. I then noticed that the dogs who sat on my shoe and disgusted me would position themselves in such a way that I could feel their anus on the top of my shoes. Other dogs, with whom I was not disgusted, would position their tails or rear legs in such a way that they could sit on my shoe without their anus making contact. It had nothing to do with tail set, tail type, or tail carriage. Then I began to notice that the dogs whose anuses made contact were typically the least sociable dogs who commonly failed one or more parts of the full assessment. The most sociable dogs hardly ever touched their anuses to me or any other place in the testing environment. Anal glands are known for scent marking in dogs, and it seems to me that a dog who swipes his anus all over the tester and furniture in the testing room, could, like graffiti, be tagging his signature, claiming ownership of all these things.

I was recently watching an episode of Meerkat Manor on Animal Planet, and was thrilled and astounded to see the first reference in any mammal, to anal marking. It was described as an ‘attack’ and considered part of a dominance take-over by one meerkat to her injured sister. Although there was no biting or actual injury, the one meerkat repeatedly anal-swiped and shoulder rubbed all over the other meerkat.


Associated Behaviors: Anus Touch, Anal Swipe