You're bound to witness some odd behavior in your dog from time to time. Dogs sniff butts, lick unpalatable surfaces and they're even known to drink out of toilets. And dogs sometimes "scoot," or drag their butts across the floor. Scooting isn't a typical sign of heat, but of some sort of anal irritation.
If your dog's rubbing her butt on the carpet, she may have irritation or feces stuck in the area, probably due to diarrhea. Clean the area and make sure she is drinking plenty of water. An injury, skin condition or infection or an anal sac problem also may be to blame. Tapeworms, other intestinal parasites and their eggs also cause irritation around the anus and butt dragging. Less common causes include rectal prolapse -- when part of the rectum protrudes from the anus -- and tumors. Ask your vet about your dog's scooting.
Signs of Heat
Female dogs begin going into heat at puberty, which they typically reach between 6 months and 2 years of age. Most dogs go into heat twice per year for about two to three weeks. Visible external swelling of the vulva is often the first sign of heat, but it's not always noticeable. The bloody vaginal discharge is much harder to miss. After about a week, the blood content diminishes and the discharge becomes more pink and watery. Other signs include increased urination, seeming distracted or more alert, behavioral changes and elevating the hind legs near males.
By Jon Mohrman
About the Author
Jon Mohrman has been a writer and editor for more than seven years. He specializes in food, travel and health topics. He attended the University of Pittsburgh for English literature and San Francisco State University for creative writing.