Why do dogs have to do this?

You're late for work. It's pouring buckets of rain, and your dog doesn't seem to mind as he spins in circles to find the proper direction to poop.

Sure, he doesn't have a job to get to, but he should at least be quick doing his business in a downpour, right?

There are several different theories about why dogs do this act when going to use the bathroom. Let's start with one of the more unusual possible causes:

Your Dog Is Aligning With The Earth's Magnetic Field

There could be some science behind your dog's odd, but perfectly normal behavior.

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A 2014 study suggested that dogs who spin in circles before pooping are trying to align themselves with the Earth's magnetic field. The belief is the dog is trying to be inline with a north-south axis.

The study included 70 dogs who openly avoided defecating on an east-west axis.

Your Dog Is Finding The Best Spot

Don't overthink this, because your dog is probably doing enough contemplating for the both of you.

The American Kennel Club says that dogs spinning in circles before they poop is similar to what many of them do before finding a place to lay down.

Finding the "best spot" might not always mean the most comfortable. The AKC says this can be traced back to dogs being in the wild and checking the ground for potential predators or disturbances.

Dog thinking about his upset stomach
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Your Dog Is Trying To Keep Things Moving

And by "things," we're not talking about the daily routine of going outside to start the day. This is all about digestion.

Canine Journal believes the movement stimulates intestines to keep the poop moving right on out. The spinning my increase or become more aggressive if the dog is having trouble going.

Consider checking in with your vet if you feel this is the case.

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