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What do you call it when your dog takes off like a rocket and does a few laps around the house or yard at Mach speed?” Zoomies!”

All dogs take off running in circles occasionally. It’s exciting, and it makes them happy. It usually makes us happy too; I always smile when my dog does it.

Probably the most common reason dogs zoom is to instigate play, especially a game of chase with another dog. Puppies do it with their littermates. They may try to get us to do it, too, but of course we can’t possibly keep up!

golden zooies

The zoomies often follow a play bow, a daring “come and get me” look, and then the launch. Off he goes! A fast sprint might be followed by another play bow and a launch in the other direction.

Some breeds, sighthounds such as Greyhounds and Whippets, in particular, seem to experience great joy at their own incredible capability for speed. Given the space and opportunity, they often enjoy a bout of zoomies.

dachshund zoomies

Even senior dogs get the zoomies after a bath. Most dogs do everything possible to avoid a bath in the first place, and even if they tolerate it well, they usually don’t really like it. Maybe the zoomies are a way of alleviating the stress of the bath. Maybe it’s a fun, instinctive way to dry off and increase body temperature, as getting wet and cold out in the wild wouldn’t have been ideal for their ancestors.

Zoomies are not something to worry about. They never last very long and are a good outlet for your puppy or dog. Be sure she is in a safe place, either in a fenced yard or on a carpeted area in the house where she won’t slip and fall. If you need to stop your dog for safety, stay calm so as not to encourage even crazier running. Use a treat or toy to distract her and get her to a safer place. Before a bath, close doors to the rooms where you display Grandmother’s collection of china figurines. Let your dog get it out of her system, and you can towel her off afterward!

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