Chihuahua Territorial Marking


Chihuahua Territorial Marking is a natural behavior,  every dog marks its territory, it’s a primal instinct. They tend to pee at anything to do so.

So when a chihuahua begins marking within the house, it can be frustrating for an owner. The house starts smelling like dog urine. Stains of pee seem to be everywhere.

If you want your chihuahua to stop urinating in the house, it’s important to know the difference between whether the dog is marking or accidentally peeing. Because full-on urination will be clear as you can notice a puddle where the dog has finished peeing. However, Marking is just a squirt usually near something vertical

To simply say accidental peeing means your chihuahua doesn’t know the housebreaking rules.

There is a rule you have to take seriously before you take any further action: if your dog had received correct potty training and recently he is emptying his bladder in the house, he might be ill and you need to take him to the vet.

chihuahua marks his territory near a tree

source: google images

Marking Vs Accidents

Urine amount

When marking, a typical dog won’t empty their whole bladder but will spray some urine. They move from place to place and spray out a little amount of urine wherever they go.

Urine only

Whenever chihuahuas seem to mark, it is because of issues related to behaviors.  They want to declare the territory. So they usually know the rules if you have taught them beforehand.

Marking doesn’t include bowel movements since it’s done outside. You know there is a potty training problem when your chihuahua both pees and poos inside the house.

chihuahua Territorial Marking Signs

white chihuahua

source: pexels

It’s usually males who are the ones with alpha characters. Since marking seems like an alpha-male thing to do you might think only male chihuahuas are liable to mark the territory but both genders mark. However, males often mark more than their gender counterparts.

Adult chihuahuas (1-7) years old often mark while young pups won’t have their urge developed strong yet. It means claiming territory and leadership hasn’t developed so far.

Nearly all senior chihuahuas don’t have marking issues as they are very well settled in a household.

It is possible that marking is limited to an area or through the household. Blocking the area won’t do anything because they will find a new place. Some of the well-known places are near doorways or certain objects.

Most of the time, marked spots are vertical in nature such as standing lamps, sides of sofas and chairs, and table legs. If there is a puddle left on the floor, it doesn’t count as a marking.

If you want to fix the marking issues, it is important to know the reasons for them. They do it for several reasons.

Reasons behind chihuahua Territorial Marking

Improper hierarchical understanding

Don’t mistake chihuahuas for their size, they are very energetic and have got animal instincts too. In the dog’s world, there is a pack that always has a leader and the rest of the pack are betas.

If you think that your chihuahua has developed an awful marking habit, it’s because he thinks he is the alpha male or at least competing for it.

There is a common misunderstanding about chihuahuas peeing on the owner’s bed or items. Many people think that their dogs are mean or even funny. However, that’s not the case because your little chi might be acting on leader instincts. Basically, it thinks it is protecting you from outside threats.

Response to other dogs or animals

chihuahua and a dog

source: pexels

Chihuahuas may mark territory in response to other dogs in the household or the dogs in the neighborhood. Some Dogs even mark in response to wildlife if your house is located near the woods. Animals may include squirrels, deer, possums, wild hares, etc.


Any breed of dog mark due to stress and because a lot of them are prone to the stress-induced environment it’s common they will.

Their stress level may arise due to reasons such as moving, additional family members or pets, losing a family member, and a chaotic atmosphere.

Mate calling

When female chihuahuas are in reproduction urgency, they mark areas so that male chihuahuas can locate them. Obviously female Dogs mark when searching for a partner.

Other Causes

When chihuahuas mark inside the house, the above reasons are obvious but there might be additional reasons. They may have some health issues such as

  • UTI: Frequent urination, dribbling urine, licking of the genital area, and blood in the urine are the signs.
  • kidney and bladder stones
  • canine diabetes among others.

These problems cause their bladder to be weak.

How to stop Chihuahua Territorial Marking

Marking problems can be annoying. So if you think you need to address the marking issues forever it might as well take your time and effort.

  • Researchers have found that most chihuahuas if spayed or neutered, will stop marking activities thereafter. However, some breeders noticed that even after being spayed or neutered some dogs can’t stop marking activities, but those activities were reduced significantly.
  • Make sure your chihuahua knows you are the main leader of the household. It doesn’t simply mean showing aggressive behavior but loving and caring can also do. The solid way to do this is to teach your dog the basic commands, and if necessary ask for help from a professional trainer.
  • Also, if you have a cat help them both distinguish their own areas like their own eating and playing locations.
  • Ensure that your chihuahua can get enough potty breaks and a regular schedule for outside breaks.
  • Chihuahuas have a lot of energy, therefore you must ensure that they are getting enough stimulation.

Other Tips

  • A new person in the house can trigger chihuahua anxiety, as a result, the dog can pee on the person’s bed to manifest itself. If you notice that the cause is a response to the new visitor, tell that person to make a good friendship with your dog. If the new visitor is a kid or a baby give the dog plenty of treats, and attention when the baby is around.
  • When you bring new animals to your house. Try to introduce them to your chihuahua in a safe way.
  • Before bringing other animals to your house you have to respect the first step. Which is to introduce them to each other on neutral territory.
  • Concerning temporary visitors such as workmen, move anything that can represent a target.
  • When you notice your dog is about peeing hold him gently and take him outside, then reward him with food.
  • You can consult an animal behaviorist to ask for help
  • stop uring marking using treats, There is a rule that all the dogs respect, which is a dog never pee where he eats. So in order to use this fact to your side put treats in places where the dog has marked. Being consistent is required in this process because as soon as you’ve deleted one area as a pee spot, your dog will find other new places. The process may take a very long time until your dog realizes that all the areas in the house are not allowed to use as toiles.

To Summarize: 

You can limit the marking by cleaning the marked areas effectively. It will be a difficult job as some dogs have incredible smell sense receptors. If you leave it like that your canine might think it’s the toilet area. Use high-end enzyme cleanser products to wash the spots. There are many out there in the market.

You May Also Like:

Understanding Chihuahua

Understanding Your chihuahua’s Body Language-Sounds And Movement


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