For those who have multiple dogs living under one roof, it can be a great experience because more the merrier, right? Right! But what happens when those dogs don't get along and fighting ensues? It can be harmful for both dogs and can create an unhealthy living environment. We want our dogs to all live happily and healthy under the same roof. Understanding what's causing the fighting and when it's happening can help you take the right steps to resolve the issue.
What causes it?
When multiple dogs may be too equal in rank amongst each other, the unclear hierarchy creates tension and competition and the dogs will try to claim the higher status, especially in the owner's presence.
When does it happen?
Let's say there are two dogs named Spot and Fido and Spot demonstrates dominant body language when the owner is present. This body language causes Fido to growl resulting in Fido receiving punishment. Once Spot sees Fido being punished, Fido's confidence is boosted which triggers alpha aggression and the fight begins. Recognizing this instance is important and can help stop the dog's from fighting.
4 Ways to Stop Your Dogs From Fighting With Each Other:
- First, lower the status of both dogs by doing leadership exercises and emphasize lowering the status of both dogs before giving any privileges of rank to the alpha.
- Determine which dog will have a higher status than the other.
- If neither dog is neutered or spayed, neutered or spay both dogs or at least the lower ranking.
- Give the higher ranking dog privileges of rank
If you don't see any improvement by implementing the above steps, we recommend to consult with a professional. If your attempts to give one dog privileges of rank causes an increase in fighting, you may have confused the rank. Reverse the ranks, start over and be very obvious to get your message across to both dogs.