Why Do Dogs Like To Smell Other Dogs?

Perhaps dogs smell each other to communicate, inquire, or judge other dogs. Dogs are quite sensitive in terms of smell, so they want to understand each other by their smell. We humans cannot imagine smelling each other as it might be disgusting for us, but it is a whole new thing for dogs. In this article, we will tell you all about why dogs like to smell other dogs.

Dogs have five senses like humans including; touch, taste, hearing, sight, and smell. But their most brilliant sense is smell leading in the canine world. Dogs can smell many more times in advance compared with humans.

Dogs are gifted with an extraordinary sense of smell because they have 150 million olfactory receptors compared with just 5 million of their human owners. This unusual smelling ability makes them 100,000 times more capable and sensitive to smell than humans.

In addition, the brain also plays a vital role in recognizing smell; humans only dedicate 5% of their brain for smell identification, while dogs use 30% of their brain for olfactory purposes.


Jacobson’s Organ

Dogs have an enhanced sense of smell due to an additional tool called ‘Jacobson’s organ. This tool is present in dogs’ nasal cavity, which opens in the mouth behind upper incisors. This amazing organ is used by dogs to identify what we call ‘undetectable odors”.

In addition, this tool also acts as a secondary olfactory system, which dogs often use for chemical communication. In contrast to the nerves in the olfactory tissue of the nose, which respond to familiar smells, the nerves from Jacobson’s organ travel directly to the brain.

Dogs Smell Each Other For Communication

When two humans meet, they usually socialize by body language and gestures like handshakes, hugs, and verbal greetings. In addition, facial expressions and tones of voice also play an essential role in the communication of two humans.

Dogs do not hug or verbally communicate with each other. Instead, they socialize by judging teh body language. Dogs have an advantage over people in that they can detect essential details about a new canine acquaintance using their keen sense of smell and a visual assessment. By using the biochemical compounds that dogs emit as the basis for chemical communication, their keen olfactory senses improve communication.

Moreover, by smelling each other, dogs can know various things, such as whether the new friend is male or female, they can also judge the mood like happiness or aggression, and whether the other dog is healthy and fit or ill. With a general sniff, dogs are able to get the most out of the information, but for more detailed and precise information, dogs usually come close to each other and get more personal.

Dogs Smelling Each Other And Communication

Some dog owners are astonished that dogs only smell the rear parts of each other why not some other body parts such as feet or ears? This is because the rectum contains two tiny sacs called anal glands that secrete a smelly substance into the rectum through two small openings. When the muscles in the rectal sphincter contract during a bowel movement, the glands are naturally emptied.

We, humans, cannot identify the odor of these glands as the scent is undetectable by our noses and is mainly covered under the stool smell. In some dogs smelling each other can be a way of relieving stress.

Additionally, dogs can recognize other canines they have not seen in a long time and the dominant canine in a pair due to their keen sense of smell.


Dogs smell each other due to their strong sense of smell, which they use to identify other dogs as male, female, aggressive, or friendly. Dogs also smell each other as a way of communication through a special anal gland whose smell is not noticeable by humans. Dogs also use scent as they are equipped with power smell detecting organs such as Jacobson’s organ, which can help them smell things far from humans.

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