Why Do Dogs Walk in Circles?

My master is lazy; she just flops down to the bed without inspecting if there are scorpions, stones or broken bottles. If you are wondering why your dog walk in circles have you ever considered if the dog is wondering too why you do not? Walking in circles before lying down is believed to have something to do with the wild and primitive ancestry of the dogs.

The dogs behavior of walking around in circles before lying down is considered to be an evolutionary holdover. Primitive dogs that have to sleep in the snow, under the stars, and on the leaf covered forest floor would need to make their “nest” as comfortable as possible. They need to trample the underbrush, to make the snow formation comfortable for their bodies.

Another reason is self preservation. Dogs walk in circles before lying down to make sure that they are safe from predators as well as from small animals, snakes, spiders and scorpions that can harm them while sleeping. Walking in circles is an indication that the dog is about to poop. Owners should immediately take the dog outside to avoid accident inside the house. The dog walks in circles before pooping to avoid pooping in the area marked by the scent of other dogs.

A dog suddenly walking in circles without lying down or without pooping can be caused by a medical concern. Ear mite infestation would cause the dog to favor the irritated and infected ear thus walking in circles. Infection on the inner ear, one of the balance centers of the body would cause the dog to lose its balance. The dog may tilt the head, keel over or walk in circles. Although a medical concern, infection from ear mite infestation can be easily treated.

A dog that walks in circles may be afflicted with canine distemper, Systemic Lupus Erythematosus (SLE), neosporosis, brain tumor and neurological problems. These are serious medical conditions that would need immediate medical attention. The cerebellum is the area of the brain that controls the motor ability. Once a tumor is develop in this area, the pet will e confused and walk in circles.

Neosporosis, the disease caused by parasites in raw meat affects the spinal cord and the muscles. The infected dog would walk in circles with the head hanging on one side. Neosporosis is a serious disease, one that can cause brain damage and death of the pet.

One of the symptoms of SLE is walking in circles. This degenerative disease that cause arthritis and muscle weakness are most common in German Shepherd, poodle, beagle and sheepdogs.

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