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Updated on Aug 8, 2018. Posted on Jul 31, 2018

Why Does Your Dog Stare At You While Pooping?

It's your ~doody~ to know the truth.

Look. We're all friends here, so let's cut right to the chase: Have you ever noticed your dog staring at you while he or she takes a shit?

Well, my parents just got a puppy, Cosmo. He is a very good boy, and (not here to judge!!!) I've noticed that he REALLY likes to keep his eyes on me whenever he's doing his business.

my baby weirdo

So one day, after a particularly intense poop-staredown with the lil' guy, I whipped out my phone and started googling. And as it turns out, those long looks are just another example of ~EVOLUTION~ at work!

Buena Vista

Many experts believe dogs do the poop-stare because taking a dump makes them feel vulnerable — and they want to make sure you're keeping them safe while they do it.

"The pooping position is a vulnerable position for dogs," a dog behavior expert named Mary Friedman told The Dodo in an interview. "The feeling of being vulnerable is left over from their wild ancestor, the wolf, who still has to fend for himself in the wild."

"I think dogs are making sure we have their backs while they're in that vulnerable position for an extended period of time."

And veterinarian Dr. Kathryn Primm also believes this theory. As she wrote in a blog post for I Heart Dogs:

If your dog watches you during this time, it is because she is depending on you to give her a body language signal or “heads up” if she should be afraid. She may also be looking to you to possibly defend her should the need arise.

Am I the only person who thinks this is all kind of cute??? DOGS NEED US TO PROTECT THEM WHILE THEY POO.

Oxygen

So what can you do to make your dog feel safer while they shit? Well, just keep in mind that they might be feeling a little defenseless while they're in that squat. Stay calm, and avoid any sudden, jerky movements — your pup will likely interpret them as a sign of danger.

NBC

It's also worth noting that every dog is different, and both Primm and Friedman list alternative reasons why your pup might be staring you down mid-poop, besides feeling vulnerable.

Ralchevdesign / Getty Images

For example, some dogs might be asking for treats, some might be looking for validation, and some might be imploring you for a lil' privacy. At the end of the day, you just have to follow your dog's lead!

The more you know!

NBC

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