Having a four legged companion by your side can be an enjoyable experience. They give you unlimited love, thoroughly seem to enjoy your company, and will follow you around the house – even when you might want a little bit of privacy.
Having your furry friend follow you into the bathroom is a common occurrence. If you try closing the door, you’ll likely be met with a paw or nose sticking under the door, or some pitiful little whimpers coming from the other side of the door.
But why do dogs insist on accompanying you when you just want a little bit of privacy to take care of business? There are a variety of reasons, and some of it can depend on the specific breed of dog you have, as well as different psychological issues they may have. Let’s take a closer look at the various reasons you may have a bathroom buddy.
Some Breeds are More “Helpful” Than Others
There are a few different breeds of dogs where “being helpful” seems to be bred into them. This helpfulness means it is their job – at least in their own mind – to accompany you to the bathroom and protect you from any harm.
Breeds that are overly helpful are sometimes referred to as Velcro dogs, or shadows. These little shadows will follow you to the ends of the earth and love every step. When you go to the bathroom, Border Collies or other herding type breeds, Boxers, Dobermans, and Labradors will definitely fall into the “helpful” category.
In the case of herding breeds, they are bred to “herd” livestock to and from different areas. It’s not uncommon for a herding breed to “herd” you to the bathroom then wait anxiously until they can “herd” you back out of the bathroom.
Protective breeds such as Boxers and Dobermans feel like they need to keep you safe from any potential dangers that may be lurking in the bathroom. They will sometimes zip into the bathroom before you do, and will inspect everything inside to ensure you are safe from any toilet-dwelling monsters that may be hiding.
Labradors and other retrieving type dogs love keeping you in sight simply due to their eager-to-please nature. In the case of Labrador Retrievers, they are such social hams that any attention they get is good attention – even if you happen to be sitting down with your pants around your ankles at the time.
Dogs Love to be Social and In Good Company
Dogs are pack animals, so it’s in their nature to be social. They love being part of a family group and to them, you are their family. You’re not just another member of their pack, you are their leader and they look up to you constantly.
Dogs hate being left alone. Puppies will chase your feet through the house no matter what room you enter, and this behavior will continue throughout their adult life. To your pet, you are their whole world. The bringer of food, the provider of shelter, and a loving member of their family group.
Whether you walk into the bedroom, the kitchen, or the bathroom, your dog will happily prance along behind you. If you just want a few minutes of privacy in the bathroom and end up closing your dog outside, you may soon hear their complaints from the other side of the door in the form of sad whines, barks, or even scratching on the door to be let in.
Curious Dogs Love Curious Smells
Dogs are guided by their nose in pretty much everything they do. In a study performed with 5 Bloodhounds, the dogs were able to identify and track a single human through high-traffic areas with a success rate of 96%.
The scent abilities of dogs of any breed are so much better than humans, it is no wonder dogs love the bathroom. Afterall, it’s where some pretty strange smells happen. To you, it might not be very pleasant, but to a dog it could be a bouquet of olfactory stories about where you have been, what you have eaten, and other dirty little secrets.
If your dog is not into the whole scent thing, they may just want to check out the strange objects a bathroom holds. There’s nothing more fun than unrolling a roll of toilet paper, or knocking over a plunger. They may want to see what’s behind the shower curtain, or even enjoy looking at their own reflection in the mirror. Dogs are curious by nature, and the bathroom is full of plenty of things they can take a closer look at.
No matter what driving factor makes your dog accompany you into the bathroom, just know it’s in their nature in one way or another. They may just like to be near you, they might want to sniff some new smells, or maybe they just think it’s their job to ensure your safety when you are at your most vulnerable.
If you choose to lock your dog outside the bathroom door, be prepared for the most pitiful whining and complaints you have ever heard. If you decide to let your four-legged friend join you there, rest assured they will love you even more for including them in your everyday life as much as possible.