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Why Does My Dog Roll On His Back: 7 Most Common Reasons!

Have you noticed your dog casually rolled over on its back lately? Well, don’t be worried! This behavior is very common in dogs even though it looks uncomfortable for them.

Why does my dog roll on his back?

There are many reasons for your dog’s rolling on his back. Most commonly he’s asking for affection or portraying trust and confidence. Alternatively, your dog could also be suffering from itching or skin irritation. It’s also possible that anxiety or obsessive disorder is at the root of this issue.  

But, this is just a summarized concept of the entire idea. We’ve written a detailed article going through all the reasons and what you can do to help. If that interests you, read along!

So, without further ado, let’s get right into it!

2 Things to Consider!

Fortunately, being closely associated with human beings, dogs are easy to prepare. 

So, we’ve jotted down some points of consideration. This will make it easier for you to determine the reason, which I’ll cover afterward.

When is Your Dog Rolling It’s Back?

An important factor to look out for is the timings of these rollings. Is your doggo only doing it around you, or only around other dogs. 

Perhaps they’re rolling incessantly. Taking notes of this might help you get to the root of this behavior. 

If your dog is only rolling around in front of you, don’t worry. It’s probably asking for a nice warm belly massage or affection. Speaking of affection, treating your dog blackberries can also get the job done. 

But if your dog is doing the same only around dogs, this could indicate submission. 

But, the problem arises if your dog’s rolling is not subject to company. Instead, he rolls on his back continuously. 

This could be a sign of struggle or distress. This indicates that you need to take action. We will cover this later in the article.

How is Your Dog’s Body Language?

An underlying lying reason behind a man’s love for dogs is readability. You can very easily understand when a dog is happy or stressed out. 

If a dog seems excited, wagging its tail when rolling, play with them. Maybe throw it a belly rub. 

If it looks to be in pain, panting and frowning, it could be itchy. Your dog might have fleas or worms. Looks like you’ll have to invest in good dog shampoos. 

With that being said, we can now proceed to the reasons!

7 Reasons Why Dogs Roll on Their Backs!

A dog’s need to roll on its back goes beyond belly rubs. During these rollings, sometimes it may even be annoyed if you try to touch it. So, we must understand all the reasons before making a move. 

Let’s look at the 7 most common reasons behind this behavior of your furry buddy.

Reason 1: Seeking Attention 

This is by far, the most common reason. Your furry buddy craves your affection. And as avid dog owners, we must deliver. 

If your dog rolls on its back around you, wagging its tail, waste no time! Jump straight into adoring it with massages and rubs. 

Try giving them treats. Feeding dogs carrots should do the trick!

This will ameliorate your bond and help them relax. 

Reason 2: Scratching an Itch 

Unfortunately, your canine buddy lacks the mobility to reach every part of their body. This means in case of an itch, they are unable to scratch it themselves. 

Hence, they find textured surfaces to roll their backs on. This usually gets the job done.

Dogs will often rub their back on grass fields or carpets. Alternatively, you can help your dog yourself. 

If you see your canine friend rolling on its back, go scratch his back! He will love you for it.

The degree of itchiness can vary though. Some can be simple and temporary, others can be painful and persistent. Some common causes of skin itchiness in dogs are listed below:

  • Skin Irritation
  • Allergies
  • Dry Skin
  • Parasites

This can be fixed by buying anti-flea shampoos, oatmeal baths, etc. 

Dogs are normally allergic to wheat and gluten. So, feeding dogs Graham Crackers can cause allergic reactions. 

Reason 3: Regulating Body Temperature

In Summer, the atmosphere can get warm. Like human beings, dogs will also try to cool off and lay back. Dogs might roll on their back to cool their belly. 

Alternatively, you may have noticed that tiles remain cold. Your dog might be rolling on tiles to cool its entire body. 

Reason 4: Showing Trust And Confidence

If your dog is sleeping on its back, rest assured, it trusts you completely. Your dog will roll on its back to show they feel very safe and secure. 

It indicates that it will be taken care of when asleep. 

This poster portrays its confidence that no danger will come its way. So this is actually a positive sign. 

Reason 5: Portraying Submissiveness

Some dogs are submissive by nature. They like to remain in the background and not cause too much of a ruckus. 

These dogs roll on their backs to portray their submissiveness. This is an instinctual trait. This is done because they don’t want to challenge the authority of the dominant dog or person.

Reason 6: Luring Prey 

This behavior is very common in anxious or overactive dogs. Yes, chihuahua owners, be very careful. If your dog maintains eye contact lying on its back very stiffly, do not approach. 

It is waiting to growl or lunge at you. It may even bite you. 

Dogs suffering from anxiety or hyperactivity will do this to assert dominance. This can be a problem especially with guests who are easily frightened. 

Reason 7: Suffering from Obsessive Disorder 

Some dogs build the habit of rolling for itchiness or other reasons. But in some cases, dogs don’t stop rolling even after the problem fades. It becomes an obsession. 

This disorder can be recognized if a dog is rolling regardless of place, time, situation. This is also called Canine Compulsive Disorder.

What to Do to Prevent Your Dog from Rolling on Back?

Your Dog rolling on its back to ask for affection clearly isn’t a bad thing. In this segment, we’ll talk about what you can do about reasons bearing negative repercussions.

What You Can Do About Itchiness?  

Fortunately, there are a couple of known remedies to this. They are:

Give A Herbal Tea Bath

Herbal Tea like Chamomile or green tea can soothe irritated skin with their properties. 

Soak herbal tea bags in your tub for 3-4 minutes. Let your dog bathe in this tub.

Spray Some Apple Cider Vinegar

Apple cider vinegar has innumerable benefits that dogs can derive. Its antiseptic and antifungal properties can cure a dog’s itchiness. But don’t apply it on wounds or cuts.

Administer in spray form consisting of 50% water, 50% apple cider vinegar. Here are some recommendations we have for apple cider vinegar:

Product 1
Product 2

These should make for a perfect remedial spray for your dog.

Add Oatmeal to Bath

This is an age-old remedy. Most hypoallergenic shampoos use oatmeals too so it’s safe for dogs.

Grind oatmeal into powder form and sprinkle them on your dog’s bath. Leave it for 15 minutes and Voila! The bath is ready for your dog. 

What You Can Do About Behavioral Disorders?

These instructions are applicable for dogs suffering from the following:

  • Anxiety
  • Hyperactivity 
  • Obsessive Disorder

This is a tough nut to crack. The best course of action is to hire professional trainers. If you want to train your puppy yourself, consult a veterinary behaviorist for training methods.


Question: What are some submissive dog breeds?

Answer: French Bulldogs are popular easy-going dog breeds. Besides that Pugs, Irish Wolfhounds, Standard Poodles are examples of calm submissive breeds. 

Question: What can be used to control fleas at home?

Answer: Using Fipronil spray will massively help to control fleas at your home. Flea infestations normally cause painful itches on your dog’s back. This is a vet-recommended spray to help with this problem.   

Question: How to recognize allergies in dogs?

Answer: Common allergic reactions in dogs are vomiting, nausea, and dizziness. Contact your local vets if the reactions get too intense. Check if your dog is allergic to wheat or dairy products. 

Final thoughts

That’s all we have on ‘why does my dog roll on his back’

Remember, there’s nothing wrong with it and patience is the key. Instead, throw in some approving remarks and let your dog know you’ve got its back!

We hope your article has been of value to you. If you’ve enjoyed this article, feel free to look through our other dog-related articles.

Take care of yourselves, and of course, your furry friend!