Why do dogs scoot?

If you own a dog or spend a lot of time around them, you have probably seen one scoot their bum across the floor.  The first time you see this you will probably think it looks incredibly bizarre?  Why would they do that?  It looks pretty funny too, in all its weird glory.  It could be an embarrassment too if your dog decides to do it in front of your dinner guests. Why do dogs do this?  Well, they do it to relieve themselves of an irritation around their anus.

Dog ScootingContrary to popular belief, worms are not the only cause, or even the most common cause of  dogs scooting.  There are several reasons and causes for why your dog could be irritated.  Most of the time, it has to do with their anal glands.  They usually empty when a dog poops, which is a way for them to mark their territory, but if they become clogged or fail to empty, your dog may experience great discomfort from it.  So they will scoot, to relieve the glands and help the irritation get better.  If your dog has any dry stool still on them, it can also cause an irritation and make them have an itchy anus, and they will try to relieve the itch and clean their butt by scooting across something. Skin allergies are also known to cause this kind of irritation in many dogs, especially seasonal allergies.   And, of course, tapeworms can be the cause of great irritation, which will also cause an itchy bum which your dog will try to relieve via scooting across your floor.  Some scooting, like a singular episode, should be considered normal in dogs, it happens; but if your dog is doing it consistently or recurring you should definitely take them to the vet to get them checked out.