Why does my dog walk backward?

Dogs are fascinating creatures that are very expressive in conveying their feelings or sentiments to their owners. There are many ways to express themselves, like when they run in a circle, shake their tails, and lick their master’s body; it means they are excited or happy. Similarly, when they are angry, they bark or bite. Each sign of a dog has its acceptable meaning. Like all these behaviors, dogs can also walk backward. It seems weird, but yes, it does.

But why do they do so?

It is not a big deal if your dog is trained to walk backward. However, if it is not prepared to do so, it has some meaning, which we will try to convey to you in this blog.

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Like human beings, dogs have their own emotions, which they express according to their nature. Walking backward is also one of them. Maybe your dog is suffering from fear or anxiety that needs to be removed ASAP. Or does he have some neurological disorder in this regard or something else? The blog will provide a detailed description of why your dog is behaving as it is.

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The logical argument behind the dog’s way of waking backward

Dogs fascinating creatures, and their way of expressing fear are also quite distinctive. According to veterinarian experts’ dogs usually walk backward if they feel a rage of fear inside of them. The fear can be of anything. It can be from other animals or someone who does not treat him appropriately. If you want to know whether the backward running is due to fear or the act of previous training, you must investigate the other activities of your dog.

Sometimes it is a sign to convey his problems to the master, like “See, he is threatening me.” For a dog owner, it is not difficult to understand. After keen observation, you can determine what your dog is trying to communicate. Dogs generally keep their backs on the person or animal they perceive as threatening. Some other expressions in this regard include;

  • Watery eyes
  • Barking
  • Keep their ears down
  • Stiff their tail

Sometimes it is due to whether your dog is not adjusting to their new home or environment.

Neurological disorders:

Aside from the reasons mentioned above, if your dog walks backward uncontrollably, there is a 70% chance that he has a neurological condition. This unusual behavior may be due to the following.

If there is some disease in the dog’s spinal cord, he may act abnormally and show weird behaviors. One of these behaviors is walking backward.

Seizure: Walking backward can occur in a dog suffering from a seizure, resulting in the dog’s unavoidable backward walk. The dog walks a few steps backward and then suddenly falls to the ground.

Cognitive decline:

Besides wobbling and lack of proper coordination, a dog also runs backward while suffering from a decline in cognition. This neurological disease usually occurs in old dogs.


According to a detailed investigation conducted in 2004 by some expert veterinarians, it was concluded that flexibility in dogs’ movements allows them to reduce the effects of sudden trauma and pain. For example, if your pooch is stunned after seeing something unnatural, he starts moving backward. This allows them to reduce the effect of that sudden stun.


Your dog’s walking backward may be due to the injury he suffers on his hind limbs. He is probably walking in reverse because doing so can decrease pressure in his limbs. It occurs when the pooch suffers from arthritis.

This needs a thorough investigation in this regard. And if such an injury occurs, it needs to be cured as your poor four-legged friend is in extreme pain.

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Why do baby puppies run backward?

The young puppies, less than one-year-old, have no sense of walking or running. They are somehow messy with a lack of coordination sense. Like a baby who has just started to walk, their legs are also out of control.  So that is why, during excitement and fun, they lose control of their legs and start walking behind.

No need to worry if your little pooch walks in reverse. It is like a child running his bicycle backward while operating it for the first time.

Some frequently asked questions by people

1.      Why is my pooch walking in a circle?

Besides some abnormality, moving in a circle may be due to excitement and a wave of pleasure inside your pooch. A dog can run in a process if his master meets him after a long time.

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2.      How to train your dog to walk in reverse?

Like other competitions organized for dogs, running backward also occurs at a national or international level. For this purpose, they usually train their dogs to run backward. To prepare your dog, you need to follow the below steps:

  1. First, decrease their movement and teach them how to walk backward.
  2. Assign a word that will command your dog to move backward.
  3. Whenever your dog does so, give him a treat.

3.       Can a dog walk behind due to a health problem?

Yes, he can do so because of injury and other neurological disorders. Sometimes his limbs are badly injured. Besides these reasons, a dog can walk in reverse due to anxiety and a wave of fear.

4.      Can all dogs move backward?

All dogs are OK to move backward but walking back is genetic. That’s why not all dogs can efficiently run backward.

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5.      Why do dogs put their ear back?

If dogs put their ear slightly back, it means they are engaged, able and friendly with you. However, if he tightens the ear backward, your dog is scared of something.


It is hard to know whether your dog is facing some problem or he is walking in reverse as a quirk. Still, you need not be careless in this regard. Observe your dog’s behavior. If he is showing any of the symptoms mentioned above, immediately consult the expert. Your dog is mourning some abnormality. Moreover, look after him as he probably faces some fear, so remove his insecurities in this regard.

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