What are Belly Bands for Dogs?

Since he was a puppy, Zed’s always been consistent… when it comes to peeing on my stuff. He’s never grown out of it. And I tried everything. I thought it would get better after he was neutered – nope, no luck. I’ve had to get rid of a carpet I loved; I bought an upholstery cleaner and tried all the training techniques – but nothing worked. He just kept peeing inside and marking his territory. It was time I turned to belly bands. Is this the first time you’ve heard of belly bands for dogs? Let me take you through what they are and if they’re the solution for you and your pupper. 

What exactly are Belly Bands for dogs?

A belly band is a piece of material, outfitted with Velcro or snaps, that wraps around the waist of your male dog, covering his wee willy. It serves as a solution for various urine-related issues, such as incontinence, territory marking, or persistent urination problems. Belly bands prevent dogs from marking at home and when exploring new environments. Some dogs may stop urinating altogether when the band is on, while others might continue to mark. Regardless, the band assures your dog is not damaging carpets and furniture with urine stains.

Do belly bands for dogs really work?

Yes, they absolutely work! They turned out to be a life saver (well, a furniture and carpet saver) for me and Zed. 

What do you use inside of belly bands for dogs?

You can buy dog-specific pads from Amazon and other pet retailers, but these can be pricey. I use disposable feminine hygiene pads or bladder protection pads instead. These stick to the material of the dog belly band—simply place one in the middle of the band and wrap it around your dog. You can change them every few hours without switching out the entire belly band. 

Why would a dog wear a belly band?

Here are just a few reasons why you’d want to use a belly band on a dog:

  • Senior dogs experiencing incontinence: Like people, some dogs may lose bladder control as they age. A belly band can solve your elderly pet’s struggle to get outside on time. 
  • Overly excited dogs. Is your furry friend prone to excessive excitement when visitors arrive? While you’re in the process of training them to control this behavior, a belly band can be a useful tool to prevent them from peeing on your guests.
  • Submissive urination: Some dogs may urinate submissively to placate other animals or humans when they feel scared, such as when being greeted or reprimanded. Distinguished from excited urination, dogs who urinate submissively often show signs of fear, like a submissive posture or flipping over. Belly bands can help manage the mess for dogs that display submissive urination.
  • Spot marking: If your dog has a habit of marking inside your home, belly bands can prevent them from dirtying furniture, carpets, and other household items you prefer to keep clean.

How long can you leave a belly band on a dog?

You should replace the pad in your pet’s belly band every three to four hours or immediately if it becomes dirty. Leaving urine on your dog’s skin for an extended period can lead to infections and discomfort, which we all want to avoid. If your dog does develop a rash or sores from the belly band, try a wound cream such as Tevra’s Hot Spot + Wound Ointment for Pets – it cleared up all of Zed’s ouchies in a couple of days. It’s the best one I’ve found, and the spots have yet to return. 

Do belly bands help potty train dogs?

Yes, especially if you can’t watch their dogs every minute, use belly bands as a housebreaking aid. Belly bands serve as an effective housebreaking tool for dogs, deterring them from urinating indoors by creating discomfort when they do. They often lead to reliable house training for many canines. For dogs that continue to mark their territory indoors, belly bands are a valuable aid in maintaining a home that smells fresh, stays clean and is free from urine.

Can a dog wear a belly band overnight?

Belly bands for dogs are not intended to absorb large amounts of urine and can potentially leak or cause discomfort to your dog if worn for prolonged periods, like overnight. That’s why they shouldn’t be left on your dog during long periods of absence or overnight. I don’t leave a belly band on Zed at night because I like that area to breathe and dry out from a day of peeing.

Are belly bands ok for male dogs?

A primary use of belly bands for male dogs is to stop them from marking their territory. Marking is a typical and natural behavior for both male and female dogs, although male dogs engage in this behaviour much more often. This behavior is most prevalent in unneutered males, who mark their territory to assert dominance and deter other unneutered males.

How do you care for your belly bands? 

Easy-peasy – throw them in the washing machine! If your pooch has a little overflow, just spray and soak until laundry day. You can put them in the dryer, but I prefer to let them air dry on the line.

Related: How to stop a dog from peeing in the house

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