Why Do Dogs Smell My Crotch? How To Stop It? Reasons + Tips

Why Do Dogs Smell My Crotch? How To Stop It? Reasons + Tips

Our pets engage in various actions that make us feel uncomfortable in public. It could be as basic as rolling around when you ask him to sit down or not listening to your instructions. But have you ever taken your dog out just to discover that he is sniffing everyone’s crotch?

So, Why do dogs smell my crotch? Let me start by saying that it is entirely normal for dogs to smell people in that way. This area consists of apocrine glands that secrete sweat. And sniffing this smell may give the dog somewhat of an understanding of that person’s gender, age, and mood.

Why Do Dogs Smell My Crotch?

Dogs, unlike humans, place great importance on smell since it helps them get a full picture of their surroundings. Let’s review how dogs and humans smell differently to help make the point more clear. 

They have 300 million smell receptors as opposed to our 6 million, giving them 10,000 times more olfactory strength. The Jacobson’s Organ, which is situated between the nose and the mouth, is another additional sniffing aid that they have.

It can recognize chemical signals called pheromones that provide many details about other dogs, people, and animals. That explains why dogs tend to smell other dogs as well. But if you are still wondering why dogs smell my crotch, we have listed some reasons. 

One of the most common causes is that your dog is accumulating information. We also do that, for instance, when we hug someone we love and notice their mood, how they feel, etc., similar to how your dog can get to know you better by smelling your crotch. 

Your dog is trying to find out whether you are joyful or depressed. Additionally, your dog will smell your crotch to see if you are his owner. This claim has been supported by research, which shows that dogs can identify their owners based on scent.

When smelling a person’s crotch, dogs can also tell whether you’ve met them before, your age, and your gender!

Now you might ask why dogs smell my crotch specifically. What is the reason behind it? Why don’t they smell other parts of my body? 

Dogs enjoy sniffing out different scents, but the chemical signals that catch their attention the most are those released by apocrine glands, a type of sweat gland found in the parts of the human body with the most hair.

We have the most hair in our armpits and groins, where there is also the highest concentration of apocrine odor.

But instead of armpits, since dogs cannot reach them because of the height difference, they will also go for the groin area. Additionally, the scent is covered up since so many people apply antiperspirant to their armpits.

Due to the protein contents in the discharge from these apocrine glands, it is only natural for dogs to detect smells immediately and continue sniffing your crotch.

The apocrine glands in our crotch create pheromones, a class of chemicals secreted by animals that function like hormones outside the body and influence the behavior of the receiving animals. So, it’s also possible that this is how your dog is trying to learn more about you.

But another one of the simplest answers to the question of “why do dogs smell my crotch” is maybe because they are trying to say hello to you! Have you ever witnessed two dogs sniffing each other’s butts? The situation here is similar to that.

The dog is making an effort to welcome and get to know you. Even though it might appear a little unusual to you, this is how they typically greet each other in dog language.

What Can Dogs Know After Smelling Your Crotch?

When asking why dogs smell my crotch, here are a few things you might not even have imagined that dogs might know (be prepared to be surprised).

  • Whether you own him.
  • Whether you are a stranger or someone they know.
  • Whether or not you had sex; because having sex causes an increase in your hormonal levels and pheromones.
  • Whether or not you are menstruating, there will be rises in hormone levels, and even the period will seem to have a different smell.
  • Whether you are pregnant or not: Some dogs can tell whether you are pregnant even before you realize it. Isn’t that surprising? When their female owners are expecting, dogs are protective of them.
  • Whether you are about to go into labor, this is because there is a difference in the hormone levels between when you are not pregnant and when you are about to give birth. In some cases, pregnant women have reported their dogs smelling their crotches curiously and then going into labor soon after!

How Do I Get My Dog To Stop Sniffing My Crotch?

Dogs have adapted well to living with people, but some tendencies, like their urge to smell crotches, seem to be unchanging. If you are constantly wondering, “Why do dogs smell my crotch?” It is time to change your dog’s behavior.

It is especially true when it comes to other people, such as when your dog goes about smelling people’s crotches in public.

So, how should you stop dogs from sniffing your crotch or anyone else’s? One of the methods you may start with is to teach your dog some fundamental greeting techniques, such as greeting when sitting or standing up, preferably with a paw, rather than smelling your crotch.

You’ll need some dog treats for this and a leash so your dog won’t bolt out of disinterest while being trained.

Professional dog trainers developed a technique called “target” your fist. When you and your dog get it correct, you won’t ever have to wonder again why dogs smell my crotch!

You should follow these instructions to teach your dog not to sniff people’s crotches.

Give the dog your right hand’s fist at eye level. As soon as it approaches the fist, give the dog verbal praise by saying, “good.” Then, with the other hand (the left one), offer your dog a pet treat. Keep doing this until your fist, and your dog’s nose comes into contact.

Additionally, it would help if you used a term that your dog understands, such as “touch” or another relevant phrase. And keep in mind to use your right hand’s fist away from the crotch area to distract the dog from that.

You should remember that this kind of training to stop previously learned behaviors can be difficult and takes time. Throughout the process, be patient and gentle with your dog.

Thank your for reading this post. Stay tuned with Jack Russell Owner.


  • Dominic Parker

    Dominic P. is a dog behavioral researcher who graduated from the University of Surrey and holds BVMsi (Hons) in Veterinary Medicine and Science. He has been around dogs since childhood and has unconditional love for dogs. It makes him become a researcher instead of practicing as a veterinarian. Dominic enjoys his work and likes to share his findings with dog parents to give them a better understanding of dogs’ behaviors.

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