Can Dogs Smell Human Periods?

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You know your dog is in tune with how you're feeling, your emotions, and even sometimes what you're thinking (it seems) - but did you know that your dog is incredibly aware of all of your physiological changes? That's right, they know exactly what's going on in your body, most of the time.

Because dogs are super in tune with their owners, and because they have incredible noses, they can detect when something different is going on - yes, ladies, that means your dog can tell when you're on your period. Your dog definitely knows when you're on your period, when your hormones are imbalanced or when you're experiencing female-specific physiological changes. 

How can you know when your dog knows, though? Is it possible to train your dog to be a little more comforting in your time of period-need, especially if you're dealing with some brutal hormone swings and a dose of puppy love would do wonders? 

We've got you covered. Check out our guide below on how to tell if your dog knows about your physiological changes, how you can train your dog to give you extra love, and any other period-and-my-dog questions that you might have! Read on! 

Introduction of Can Dogs Smell Human Periods?

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Signs Your Dog Can Sense Your Period

Because your dog has an insane sense of smell, they're going to be hypersensitive to any physiological changes that are happening to you - that includes hormonal changes when you cycle onto your period. To put it bluntly, your dog, with his or her acute sense of smell, can detect menstruation - even before it happens - by both odor (even if you're unable to smell it) and by the scent of your hormonal levels. 

While your dog probably doesn't fully comprehend what exactly is happening to you, they're well-aware that something is happening to you, and that it smells a little different than normal. 

If you've ever been sick and your dog has given you an exorbitant amount of attention, you can expect similar treatment when you're on your period. Your pup will probably forget personal space altogether and sniff, lick, and nose around you like crazy. 

You can also probably expect your dog to forget his or her manners and try to get a better whiff of the physiological changes they detect, so, don't be afraid to give your dog a gentle shove away if they're getting all up in your hormonal zones. It's also possible your dog will nuzzle, kiss, lick, and give you a bunch more affection than normal.

Body Language

If your dog is detecting some physiological changes in you, look out for signs like:
  • Alert
  • Sniffing
  • Raise ears
  • Tail up

Other Signs

Look out for other signs like:
  • Snouts where they don't belong
  • Comforting behavior
  • Ignoring personal space
  • Extra attention

The History of Dogs Detecting Menstruation

History of Can Dogs Smell Human Periods?
Dogs derive from wild animals, right? In the wild, dogs were expected to hunt, kill, and mate to survive. If they were unable to repopulate their pack, what was the purpose of survival, to begin with, right? So, dogs are gifted with the acute sense of smell to know when their female dogs in the pack were in heat, or rather, when they were menstruating and ready to mate in order to reproduce. 

While dogs and humans are different - obviously, the psychological changes that occur in nature for reproduction are relatively similar. Because of their acute smell and their instinct to sense when other animals' hormones are changing, you dog is more than capable of sniffing out when you're menstruating, too.

Science Behind Dog Noses

Science of Can Dogs Smell Human Periods?
Dog noses are far superior to human noses, meaning they're able to sniff out things we'd never even be able to dream of - this includes tiny, physiological, or hormonal changes in our bodies. Dogs have close to 300 million smell receptors on their noses, while us humans have a mere 6 million smell receptors. Partner that with the fact their olfactory cortex is about 40 times the size of ours and you've got super-hero level sniffing. 

Dogs are able to smell specific odors in parts per million, so while your pup can certainly smell that delicious dinner you're whipping up, they can also separate the small scent of your hormones mixed up in that delicious waft of smell. 

When our hormones change, micro-chemicals are released. Although we're not able to smell these changes, our dogs certainly can. So, even if you're not aware that you're experiencing, or are about to experience your menstruation cycle, you better believe your dog knows. 

Training Your Dog to Detect Things with His or Her Nose

Training of Can Dogs Smell Human Periods?
You can train your dog to detect tons of things like drugs, bombs, weapons, and even illnesses, but if you're looking to do that, we certainly recommend working with a certified professional to help properly train your dog. Not only will they have the proper techniques for such serious business, they'll also be more likely to have access to things like drugs, strains of illnesses, and other scents that your dog will need to be properly trained.

If you're looking for your dog to sniff out things at home, though (a more casual approach to scent detection), we certainly think you can train your pooch. First, we suggest helping your dog to understand the idea of play and a certain toy as their reward for doing something correctly. Every time your dog does something well, consistently reward them with a specific toy. 

Next, once your dog understands play as a reward, introduce their favorite toy with the scent you want your dog to be able to detect. Hide the toy with the scent somewhere, getting progressively more difficult as the training proceeds. When your dog finds the toy and the scent, reward them consistently with the toy. 

Gradually take away the toy and have your dog track down the scent. Train your pooch to give you a certain signal when they locate the scent. Reward them with their favorite toy.! 

How to React to Your Dog Sniffing Out Your Menstruation Cycle:

  • Don't get mad or frustrated with your dog for alerting you to your changes.
  • Control your dog's rude sniffing habits.
  • Allow your dog to comfort you.
  • Work on training your dog to avoid sniffing and licking you or others excessively.