A white Jack Russell Terrier puppy stands sideways in a rack. Man's hand hold the puppy by tail.

Why Do Dogs Chase Their Tails?

What Causes Dogs to Chase Their Tails?

The following are some of the most common causes of dogs chasing their tails:

• They’re having a good time and acting silly.

This is especially prevalent in pups who are just starting to explore their surroundings and body.

Happy young adult woman looking at her Dalmatian dog and being forehead to forehead in nature

• They’re uninterested.

To keep in good physical and mental shape, dogs require a lot of physical activity. If they’re bored, their tail could appear to be a fun toy.

Golden retriever dog puppy playing with toy

• They have a medical condition that has to be addressed.

Compulsive tail-chasing can be a symptom that your dog is suffering from a medical problem. Your dog should be evaluated by a veterinarian in this case.

Vets in medical uniform examining dog with stethoscope

Usually, simply refocusing your dog’s attention will help them quit biting their tail. Give your dog a basic command like “sit” or “stop” if you notice them beginning to bite their tail.

However, if your dog chases his tail obsessively, the compulsion may worsen over time. In many situations, they will begin chewing their tail as well.

Chihuahua Dog Sitting On Cushion Indoors

What causes dogs to chew on their tails?

Dogs will chew on their tails when they are bored or inquisitive about them. A dog chewing its tail can sometimes be an indication of something more serious.

Here are a few of the most common causes of dog tail chewing:

Man's hands hold the puppy by the tail and chin. Concept of dog training, preparation for the show.

• Pain.

To provide alleviation, dogs will chew on a painful region of their tail.

Dog with broken leg

• An allergic response may occur.

A dog’s tail may be chewed to relieve itching or discomfort caused by an allergic response.

The doctor examines the dog's Boston Terrier Allergy.

• Fleas.

Fleas are microscopic insects that can cling to dogs and cause them pain. • Intestinal parasites. Tail chewing could indicate that your dog has fleas.

Close-up of a tick on the hand. An animal tick taken from a dog

If your dog has a worm infection, he or she may chew on his or her tail to relieve the discomfort.

Toy caterpillar with smile, to illustrate concepts of infant intestinal health.

• They’re worried.

If your dog is nervous, they may lick or chew their tail. This is especially prevalent when you have new visitors or when there are thunderstorms.

nervous dog Angry Aggressive Mad Dog Running On Camera
• A traumatic injury to the tail or spine.

A dog who chews his or her tail or spine may have internal harm that isn’t usually visible at first.


In other cases, a dog biting its tail could indicate compulsive behavior.

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