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Common Behavior Problems

Don't Get Along with Other Family Dogs

Does your dog want to “be the boss” of the other dogs in your family? Is one of your dogs a “bully” and gets grumpy if the other dog just looks at him wrong? Do your two female dogs get into nasty fights with each other?

These are just a few of the many types of problems that can develop between dogs who live together. Traditional wisdom labels all these problems as “dominance problems”, but this is simply not true and is dangerously misleading.

Supporting one dog’s dominance over the other can sometimes be helpful, but can also actually cause an increase in conflict, because it is the wrong thing to do. Many dog-dog problems are not about dominance.

Many fights sound worse than they are, and often neither dog is injured. This is a good sign, but you should seek expert help to prevent the problem from escalating. If one dog has already been injured, you may be better off separating them until you can consult with a certified behaviorist who can help you.

Using the right techniques to introduce dogs to one another can prevent some fighting problems. Avoid just putting the dogs together and “letting them work it out”.

If your dogs’ fighting problem has escalated to the point where they cannot get along, one dog is afraid of the other, or either dog is being injured, we recommend a consultation immediately, to avoid further injury and to improve the quality of life for both you and your dogs.

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