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Pawsitive Training for Better Dogs

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Disclaimer: The material provided by Bailey on this web site is designed for educational and entertainment purposes only. The information presented is provided with the understanding that Bailey is not engaged in rendering medical or professional behavioral services. Such information should not be used as a substitute for behavioral advice provided by a qualified canine behavior therapist.

Please remember that Bailey's advice, comments, or opinions are solely Bailey's, and do not necessarily reflect those of the staff here at Pawsitive Training for Better Dogs.

Pawsitive Training for Better Dogs is not responsible for actions taken based on the advice provided herein.

Only Dog No More

Hi Bailey...

I have two Miniature Pinschers.  One of them, Bosco, is 6 years old and I've had him for almost 2 years.  He has always been a good dog. Since we've had him neutered, he will only hump a stuffed animal every now and then (maybe once a month). Our new dog, Gabby, is only 2 1/2 yrs old.  She is a very quiet dog and has been very well behaved for us since we got her. 

Bosco has been constantly humping Gabby since she walked in the door.  She doesn't like it and she tells him by growling and snapping at him.  She has not hurt him at all, but how do we stop him from doing this? Bosco acts very jealous anytime we pick Gabby up or mention her name.  Is this normal? Will it go away with time?


Bailey's Reply:

Dear Territorial,

Bosco has most likely had the good life of an "only dog", getting 100% of your attention, and never having to share treats, toys, or the couch. Then one day, Gabby walks in. Now he has to learn how to share everything. Some dogs don't care about this kind of thing. But for Bosco, it's turned his world upside down!

So Bosco sees Gabby, and says to her, "Hey, you may be new, but I'm Top Dog in this place!" The mounting behavior is common in displaying status in the "pack". Gabby's reaction to the mounting indicates that she's not too thrilled with his assertiveness. She doesn't intend to harm him, but rather give him a strong signal that she won't tolerate his mounting.

“The mounting behavior is common in displaying status in the 'pack'.”

This constant mounting displayed by Bosco should be taken seriously. If you find that the behavior does not let up, or gets worse, you should intervene. Break them up and redirect the dogs to other separate activities, such as unstuffing a Kong, or basic obedience exercises (such as "sit-stay" or "down-stay"). You also may want to consider giving each of the dogs their own special one-on-one sessions, so that there is no competition for attention from you.

Whenever you are lavishing attention on Gabby, make sure Bosco has something better to focus on- such as a stuffed marrow bone filled with warm salmon and his favorite treats. If he gets something extra special when you're spending time with Gabby, he soon won't mind sharing his "parents".

Check out the book, "Feeling Outnumbered? How to Manage and Enjoy Your Multi-Dog Household" by Karen London and Patricia McConnell. It's got some fantastic tips on living with your fur kids. Good luck with your dogs, and keep me posted on how things go.



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