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Training & Behaviour

Hostility between dogs

How to make your dogs get along?

It is always a possibility that dogs who stay together might not get well along. Sometimes, some very serious wounds are caused in such encounters. So how can one take control of such a situation? 

As is the case with wolves, social relationships between dogs are based on a strict hierarchy. When two dogs live together, there is always a dominant and a dominated dog. And if you want to maintain the peace between them, you will need to respect this hierarchy even if it may mean denying your natural instinct.

Following are a few things that you can keep in mind while you put the hostility between your dogs to ease.

1) Pay extra attentions to female dogs

It is a common belief amongst owners that having two dogs at a time is an advantage. They can enjoy the company with each other and also have a play mate always. Regardless of what people think, it is found that female dogs are more involved in aggressions than males and their fights are more difficult to resolve.

2) Give priority to the dominant dog

Dogs have a pack mentality and need to have a clearly-defined position within a group. For a dog, being dominated offers a form of security that is preferable to not knowing what role he should play.

Dog fights generally occur at meal times, there is an element of rivalry between them. At such times, give priority to the dominant or aggressive dog for if you do otherwise, it’ll only worsen the situation.

3) Different treatments for dog fights

Before it becomes difficult for your dogs to stay together, make sure you consult your vet. As well as advising you on behaviour therapy, he may prescribe anxiolytic drugs, if needed. Such treatments are usually successful, but should always be managed by a medical professional. 

Royal Canin tip:

To identify the dominant and dominated dog

It is difficult to identify the difference between the dominant and the dominated dog. Follow are a few pointers that’ll help you make out the difference:

- The dominant dog will try to intimidate the other dog by giving him a fixed look. He may test the dominated dog by putting a leg on his neck or back. If the second dog accepts these advances, he will then put all the front part of his body on the back, as if riding a sexual partner. Finally, he may lower his head and nibble the neck of the dominated dog.

- The dominated dog avoids looking directly at the dominant dog. His ears remain low and his tail will stay between the rear legs. When he wants to show his submission, he will whine, lie down and show his belly and /or neck.

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