Understanding Dog Zoomies: What Every Dog Parent Needs to Know

Understanding Dog Zoomies: What They Are and Why Dogs Get Them

Have you ever witnessed your dog suddenly burst into a wild run, zipping around the house or yard like a furry tornado? We have experienced this with each of our dogs (yes, even Moses) and it's hysterical!  These moments of sheer exuberance are known as "zoomies", or, technically, Frenetic Random Activity Periods (FRAPs). While this sudden explosion of activity may seem chaotic, zoomies are a normal and healthy behavior for dogs of all ages and breeds.

What are Zoomies?

Zoomies are rapid bursts of energy where dogs sprint around unpredictably, often involving sharp turns, spins, and leaps. According to Cornell University's College of Veterinary Medicine, zoomies are a way for dogs to release pent-up energy and excitement. They are most common in puppies and young dogs but can occur at any age. Our Akbash Sammy would get the zoomies after he ate. We called it his happy dance!

Why Do Dogs Get Zoomies?

There are several common triggers for zoomies. As noted by Purina, dogs may experience zoomies after a bath, during playtime, after eating, or before bedtime. These episodes are often a response to excess energy or a way for dogs to express their joy and happiness. Our Anatolian Shepherd Moses is typically low energy - but bring him to the beach and he's a madman - dashing, running, and darting around in sheer joy!

Zoomies can also occur as a stress-relief mechanism. For instance, after being cooped up for a long time or experiencing a stressful situation, a burst of energy helps dogs shake off the tension.

Moses and Beach Zoomies

When Do Zoomies Happen?

Here are some common situations when dogs might get the zoomies:

  • After you arrive home from work
  • During playtime
  • After eating
  • Late in the evening
  • If they become overstimulated during training
  • After going to the bathroom
  • When something exciting happens
Are Certain Breeds More Prone to Zoomies?
  • Zoomies can occur in any dog breed, but some breeds might be more prone to these energetic bursts due to their high energy levels and playful nature. Breeds that often exhibit zoomies include:

    • Border Collies: Known for their high intelligence and energy.
    • Labradors: Playful and energetic, especially as puppies.
    • Terriers: Naturally lively and active.
    • Boxers: Enthusiastic and full of energy.
    • Dalmatians: High-energy dogs that love to run.

    However, any dog, regardless of breed, can experience zoomies, particularly when they're excited or have excess energy to burn.

Managing the Zoomies

While zoomies are generally harmless, it's important to make sure your dog is safe during these energetic bursts. If your dog is prone to getting the zoomies, the team at Daily Paws suggests creating a safe environment where your dog can zoom around without crashing into furniture or other obstacles. If zoomies happen outside, being in a fenced yard is ideal to prevent your dog from running into the street.

Regular exercise can really help in managing zoomies. The key is helping your dog expend energy in a controlled way. You can do this by providing your dog with plenty of physical and mental stimulation can help reduce the frequency of these frenzied episodes with activities like fetch, agility training, and interactive toys.

Is it Zoomies or Something More?

While zoomies are a normal part of dog behavior, excessive or extremely frantic episodes may indicate that your dog needs more exercise or mental stimulation. In rare cases, they can be a sign of underlying health issues. If you're concerned about your dog's behavior, it's always best to consult with your veterinarian.

Dog zoomies are a delightful expression of your dog's zest for life so next time your dog starts zooming, sit back, smile, and enjoy the show! Or maybe join in with them! :)

Live, Love, Bark

Leave a comment

All comments are moderated before being published