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Domination

cassingermany
April 18th, 2011, 03:10 PM
Anna keeps trying to hump our new puppy and show her whos boss. Do I let this happen or should I put a stop to it? So far, I'm putting a stop to it by just saying "Aaaaaaaaaaanna" in my motherly voice. Which means the way I say it also means "and just what do you think YOUR doing?!?!? HMMMMMMM?". She puts her head down and just walks away. I've owned 2 dogs before but Anna left Sookie alone. She really wants to dominate the puppy! If I let her, could she turn violent with her?

mikischo
April 19th, 2011, 02:16 PM
Don't know what to advise you on this, cassingermany. I'm just bumping this thread back up so our more savvy dog people don't miss it. :)

GalaxiesKuklos
April 19th, 2011, 07:49 PM
Anna keeps trying to hump our new puppy and show her whos boss. Do I let this happen or should I put a stop to it? So far, I'm putting a stop to it by just saying "Aaaaaaaaaaanna" in my motherly voice. Which means the way I say it also means "and just what do you think YOUR doing?!?!? HMMMMMMM?". She puts her head down and just walks away. I've owned 2 dogs before but Anna left Sookie alone. She really wants to dominate the puppy! If I let her, could she turn violent with her?

humping is actions
showing her who's boss is abstract.

You are correct about the first, not the latter... unless she is using graphs? Some organizational charts perhaps?

Choochi
April 19th, 2011, 08:11 PM
I would continue to do what you're doing especially if it's working. She is not necessarily trying to dominate the pup. Humping can mean lots of things, some times it's nothing more then a physical outlet of frustration. Maybe the puppy isn't playing enough with her or she's just unsure of what to think of her yet and is testing her out.

cassingermany
April 20th, 2011, 03:51 AM
You are correct about the first, not the latter... unless she is using graphs? Some organizational charts perhaps?

What? Everything I've looked up as to why she would be doing this points to showing dominance. It's got nothing to do with sarcasm (but thanks for trying) but a way that dogs work in packs. Nothing tells me though that she could turn violent if Lily doesn't "fall in line" so to speak. So being a pet forum, I know someone else has dealt with this and what they did or what happened in the end.

Thanks to everyone who replied. :-)

Bailey_
April 20th, 2011, 09:15 AM
Everything I've looked up as to why she would be doing this points to showing dominance

Humping is not neccessarily a sign of dominance at all. It can be a reaction out of stress, and it can also be a sign of play. There are many websites that you can read, books on dog behavior, that can further explain to you the reasons and causes of humping.

In your case, the important thing to ensure is that the puppy is not being oppressed by the older dog, as can sometimes be the case in these situations.

Continue to monitor and discourage the act, but be careful not to punish.

cassingermany
April 20th, 2011, 09:44 AM
The way she does it is why the websites and books say its a show of dominance. She grabs her and pulls her back to her and Lily is the only dog she does it with. She is around other dogs and does not do it. I know that humping could be a sign of being excited or anxious...it's a lot of things. But it being the way she does it and only with one dog, from what "they" say, it's most likely dominance. Anna has been by herself in this house for well over a year so I can see that she sees Lily as maybe an intruder and someone to say "HEY! This is my house!" But we are working on it and I see improvement already. I guess its hard to remember to put every little detail in online.

I also did finally read today that to keep letting her do, it might just become habit so I definitely will keep stopping her without punishment.

Thank you for replying! :-)

millitntanimist
April 20th, 2011, 01:44 PM
I find it helpful not to assume an agenda for the dog - we can never truly know what her intentions are - and, regardless, management is your best option. If it's easy to disengage her from your pup as it is, I would keep doing so (you can always have her drag a short leash so that you can gently re-direct her). Keep them separated when you are not around so that she never has the opportunity to mount her outside of your supervision, this will continue the behavior.
With a little time and patience this problem will solve itself. Once the puppy hits adolescence she will very likely start retaliating (as an adult would) and it should stop.
Spaying will also probably help.

I know it's a bit of a frustrating and silly problem, hang in there :thumbs up

Here are a few articles that deal with dominance theory, maybe they will also be of some interest?

http://www.dogwelfarecampaign.org/why-not-dominance.php
http://www.theotherendoftheleash.com/the-concept-formerly-described-as-dominance
http://www.nonlineardogs.com/socialorganisation.html

Criosphynx
April 20th, 2011, 03:34 PM
The way she does it is why the websites and books say its a show of dominance


because its a romanticized notion that humans identify with and like. That and your reading the wrong books! :)

Its not true though. Its the web, you can find people who think they are fairies and can read minds....the true, good, dog trainers and behaviorists say humping is sex, play, and perhaps a few other minor things, but not dominance. :)

this is the best article I've found thus far

http://www.dogsincanada.com/oh-behave-love-and-mounting

Shaykeija
April 20th, 2011, 11:39 PM
Very good read...:thumbs up

cassingermany
April 22nd, 2011, 12:23 PM
Ok, I understand that but how do you know it's not? The websites I read are for her breed. Basically that Jacks can become very aggressive and dominating to other dogs if allowed. She is a mix but the jack gene must have taken over as she looks like a tall jack russell to the T. She is not a Parson jack russell.

Maybe it's just the Jack Russell website that have me leaning towards this as a start to aggressive behavior but even if it's not, the results will still be the same as they say that if the act is allowed on another dog, it could just become habit which could get her bit by the wrong dog some day. Better for me to watch for aggressive behavior than to think it's nothing and be caught totally off guard.

I appreciate everything. :-)

I will look at the website, thanks!

Bailey_
April 22nd, 2011, 01:12 PM
Ok, I understand that but how do you know it's not? The websites I read are for her breed. Basically that Jacks can become very aggressive and dominating to other dogs if allowed. She is a mix but the jack gene must have taken over as she looks like a tall jack russell to the T. She is not a Parson jack russell.

Maybe it's just the Jack Russell website that have me leaning towards this as a start to aggressive behavior but even if it's not, the results will still be the same as they say that if the act is allowed on another dog, it could just become habit which could get her bit by the wrong dog some day. Better for me to watch for aggressive behavior than to think it's nothing and be caught totally off guard.

I appreciate everything. :-)

I will look at the website, thanks!

Just something I want to clarify...Aggression is one thing. A dominant dog is another. Be careful not to get the two confused, because they are quite different.

cassingermany
April 22nd, 2011, 01:32 PM
Thanks for pointing that out. I am mixing the two when I shouldn't be. She is not aggressive. I was putting the idea of the act in the same basket as aggressive. I guess maybe since reading this site and looking up how jacks react with other dogs through google, I see that jacks don't have the best reputation and I've never worried about it until we got Lily. I think my mind is in more of a paranoid setting that she's just going to become a different dog than she is. I need to snap out of it and know that any behavior is up to me and my state of mind. If I'm on edge, she will be too.

millitntanimist
April 22nd, 2011, 11:31 PM
I need to snap out of it and know that any behavior is up to me and my state of mind. If I'm on edge, she will be too.
Well, yes and no :).
I think it's always a good idea to avoid a negative emotional reaction to behavior, and that being calm and positive will be of some help in any situation.
That said, I feel that it is an unfair expectation (of yourself or your dog) to hold that your behavior will dictate their personality or emotional response. Dogs are autonomous, sentient beings. They have their own likes, dislikes, fears, and silly superstitions that you can influence, but not alter.

In working with dogs, I am always intrigued by their personalities in contrast to those of their people. More often than not, shy or nervous folks come in with more confident dogs, while the outgoing social butterflies show up with the wallflowers - not for any particular reason, it's just who they are. :)

MyBirdIsEvil
May 8th, 2011, 08:34 PM
Thanks for pointing that out. I am mixing the two when I shouldn't be. She is not aggressive. I was putting the idea of the act in the same basket as aggressive. I guess maybe since reading this site and looking up how jacks react with other dogs through google, I see that jacks don't have the best reputation and I've never worried about it until we got Lily. I think my mind is in more of a paranoid setting that she's just going to become a different dog than she is. I need to snap out of it and know that any behavior is up to me and my state of mind. If I'm on edge, she will be too.

I think that's it. Several people have stated that the humping isn't necessarily a dominant behavior and you don't seem to want to accept it.

I've seen VERY submissive dogs hump other dogs. All of my dogs will hump each other at some time or another during play, and I discourage it mainly because I find it distasteful.

Many people try to strictly relate humping to dominance because they believe adult wolves display dominance by humping. However, dogs are NOT wolves anyway. Dog's have been bred to keep many of the puppy behaviors that wolves lose once they reach maturity. Adult wolf behavior is not that attractive to humans because adult wolves are generally pretty reserved and often shy. Wolf puppies, however, are very playful, outgoing, and more likely to try and appease a human, so dogs have been bred to keep those traits even as they age. You will see wolf puppies doing all kinds of things to each other that wouldn't be acceptable to the adults of the pack between each other. Dogs, since they keep puppylike behavior through adulthood, may hump simply as part of their play activity, or physical interaction, with no dominance intended. It establishes boundaries (What will the other dog let me get away with?). A fairly dominant dog may actually let a submissive dog hump them to show trust or acceptance (I don't see you as a threat, so go ahead!).
And that's only scratching the surface.

Don't believe that humping is strictly dominant behavior just because a lot of web articles state such. These articles are lazily written and quoting each other most of the time, so the information is flawed. One article is written with flawed information, and 10 other article writers copy the information from that article, and so on and so on. This can also be the case with books, where an "expert" stated something who knows when and a bunch of other books quoted them. Eventually it's hard to break that misinformation because it's been quoted so often, when new, more accurate information comes out it's flooded out by the old stuff.


She is around other dogs and does not do it. I know that humping could be a sign of being excited or anxious...it's a lot of things. But it being the way she does it and only with one dog, from what "they" say, it's most likely dominance. Anna has been by herself in this house for well over a year so I can see that she sees Lily as maybe an intruder and someone to say "HEY! This is my house!"

The reason you don't see your dog doing it with other dogs, is because dogs that don't know each other as well generally have more strict boundaries than dogs that do, or dogs that live together (same with humans. You'll give your friend a hug. Will you go up and give a stranger a hug? Uh...probably not). A dog that has learned proper behavior around other dogs isn't just going to go up to a new dog, or a dog they don't live with, and hump them. Just like if you ran up and hugged a stranger, you'd probably get an aggressive reaction from them.
When you watch dogs meet, it will generally go from sniffing, to play bowing, to physical interaction. You don't generally see something like humping until the dogs are well acquainted with each other. A dog that just goes up to other strange dogs and starts humping them, would kind of be a social misfit. They dunno how to behave properly in social situations :p

If the dog that's being humped doesn't seem to mind, then don't worry about it. Even if it IS a show of dominance (and like others said that doesn't = aggression), it's not something to worry about. Your dogs will establish a pecking order whether you discourage humping or not, through other body language. One dog is likely going to be more dominant than the other, and this is often the dog that lived in the household the longest.

cassingermany
May 9th, 2011, 05:57 AM
Mybirdisevil,

Just as parenting goes, when you know your kid, you know. I'm not very good at explaining the situation on a forum but I educated myself about it from several different sources and had figured this is what was going on even before I read up on it. I'm not one of those people that take anyone's word for gospel, and just as everyone else, you take advice from different people/sources and make it your own. Which is why lots of advice is great. People can point out that humping isn't always a dominant form of behavior, and I DO get that, most of the time it might not be! I just don't understand how you know for sure that one expert is wrong while another is right. It's all a choice of who to believe, isn't it?

We have lots of dog friends who we are around often and we dog sit for all the time for a day or two, they are not strangers and she did not do it with them. Just wanted to address that. Hard to remember to put in every detail but lesson learned.

I know that a lot of people tend to believe that all dogs should love other dogs and people and sometimes that's just not the case. Don't get me wrong, Anna is an amazing dog but I fully believe that she was and even still is trying to establish a pecking order but she's slowly backing off after I decided not to just let her do it when she got worse with more aggressive acts. It was just her first tick that made me think "Theres just something not right with that". So I let her do it instead of going with my instincts and sure enough, Lily wasn't allowed near the dog bowls when she was eating even though they had separate bowls among other things like even getting near the couch. Lots of growling and several nips and yips (yipping on lilys part). She's calmed down a lot since stopping all behavior and lily is free to drink out of the same water bowl now at the same time.

It's hard to come back and give updates when so many people think they know every breed and characteristic inside and out over a forum and will tell you how you're wrong. That you are looking at all the wrong information and that only their information is the correct one. I don't know anywhere near what other people know about other breeds and how other dogs behave. I just know my babies. Aren't all pet parents like that? If they act strange for who they are, don't you question it and wonder what's up and not act as though it's no big deal? I even know when she doesn't feel good. She's got this way of cuddling that differs just slightly from the norm before she stops eating when her stomach is upset. I just know her and I know that her action wasn't playful, it was the not so nice side.

At the end of the day, we are dealing with it incalm termas. Everyone is adjusting and all of us are quite happy which is all anyone can ask for.

millitntanimist
May 9th, 2011, 11:09 AM
but I educated myself about it from several different sources and had figured this is what was going on even before I read up on it.
I think where we got antsy was when you mentioned several posts back about reading from websites - as Criosphynx mentioned websites tend to be terrible sources of scholarly information. The articles that some of us suggested to you are written by animal behaviorists (some people call themselves "behaviorists" unfairly, to be a true behaviorist you must be a vet and then take additional training) and Ph.D research scientists who have also several books on dogs and dog training. The reason we are making our assertions against "dominant" humping is because of the work of those authors. Have a look at the credentials of the people who are writing the articles you are reading. Are they research scientists or have they "been working with dogs for 20 years." I do believe that experience is an excellent teacher, but experience and empirical evidence are two very different things. Many 'dominance' exercises (i.e., eating before your dog, never letting your dog on the furniture, always going first) have been tested in laboratories under controlled conditions with hundreds of animals and have been proven to have absolutely no effect on dog behavior - other than altering the dog's expectation in those situations.

So I let her do it instead of going with my instincts and sure enough, Lily wasn't allowed near the dog bowls when she was eating even though they had separate bowls among other things like even getting near the couch. Lots of growling and several nips and yips (yipping on lilys part). She's calmed down a lot since stopping all behavior and lily is free to drink out of the same water bowl now at the same time.

The problem with "dominance" theory is that it is a superstitious belief. We see correlations of behavior and conclude that 'dominance' was the problem when we think that we changed one thing and the rest fell into place. But correlation does not equal causation. You mention many of Anna's undesirable behaviors extinguishing once you started re-directing her humping, but my guess is that you were also re-directing the other undesirable behaviors you saw (maybe you are saying this with "all behavior," sorry, i wasn't sure :) ). Regardless, dogs do what works. When those behaviors stopped being rewarding (she stopped getting access to resources when she behaved badly) she stopped exhibiting them. Not because you "demoted" her socially.

At the end of the day, we are dealing with it in calm terms. Everyone is adjusting and all of us are quite happy which is all anyone can ask for.
Absolutely. No one is questioning your bond or expertise with your dogs. You sound like you are doing a great job :)

millitntanimist
May 9th, 2011, 09:25 PM
But it being the way she does it and only with one dog, from what "they" say, it's most likely dominance. Anna has been by herself in this house for well over a year so I can see that she sees Lily as maybe an intruder and someone to say "HEY! This is my house!"

Also, they way (it sounds like) your sources are labeling dominance is incorrect. The behavioral dynamic of dominance and submission is not a character trait (in the context of a group of animals it can be used as a label for social organization - in most instances, though, that social organization is based on breeding and family structure i.e. father and mother are "dominant," they have the most social freedom - but not as a method for establishing a pecking order), it is a ritualized method of preventing aggression around resources.
In order for the mounting to be related to dominance specifically, it must be in regards to a specific resource. Dog's ideas of possession are different than ours. They do not see physical spaces as being "theirs," only objects or resources that they are touching, have in their mouths, or are less than a few feet away from. When your dog leaves the room, that bone she was chewing on is fair game for anyone, she has relinquished her possession. Dogs do not have a catalogue in their minds of all the objects they "own" the way we do (dogs don't have houses or keep possessions) and they do not use dominance to obtain resources in the abstract. Your dog will never use dominance (or submission for that matter) to actively control another dog or person, that's not what it's for. There are no absolutes with dogs, things are fluid. One dog may want first access to food, while another the prime sleeping space on the couch. By the definition of "dominance" each of them is therefore dominant in that context, regardless of "pecking order" but one is not dominant over the other and therefore in control of the other.
Using dominance as a synonym for control is a misnomer, it is simply one half of the dynamic. In fact, (as Mybirdisevil already mentioned) many animals utilize submission, not dominance, to gain access to resources (or "control"). There are two types of submission: active and passive. Passive submission offers distancing signals to other dogs, active submission entices or attempts to engage them. I know one very assertive Coonhound that practices extreme active submission that overwhelms our Shiba-Malinois who offers what are labled as "dominant" body signals (standing tall, ears and weight pitched forward, tail high). The Coonhound "submits" so vigorously that she can take any resource from Moro without any aggressive signals from either of them. The Coonhound is more submissive but she is pushier.
I think it's fair to put dogs in a category of pushy/assertive or shy/reserved because those are personality types, but both types can utilize either end of the behavior dynamic in social interaction with other dogs or to gain resources.

In my opinion, bad behavior is just bad behavior. When Anna was vocalizing or snapping at your pup around the food bowl (for example) it was just like a child throwing a temper tantrum ("back off, I don't want to share"). When you showed her that that behavior was unacceptable, it stopped working for her, it began to extinguish itself.

cassingermany
May 10th, 2011, 08:42 AM
Thank you, M. I really appreciate the way you layed that out for me. You have a way with words. :-)

Sorry for my typos. Stupid Ipad and auto correct.

millitntanimist
May 10th, 2011, 09:47 AM
Awww, thankyou :)
I'm glad it made sense, I don't always :P

MyBirdIsEvil
May 10th, 2011, 10:57 PM
I just don't understand how you know for sure that one expert is wrong while another is right. It's all a choice of who to believe, isn't it?

It's not a case of just picking one expert over another because one seems to make sense to you. It's a case of picking the expert that has the most educated and reputable background in whatever subject you're researching. And when you read an article or a book have you have to look at the citations and references and go directly to the source to see if the information was even quoted accurately.
Also try to pick the most up to date information possible. A lot of articles still quote information that is very old, outdated, and has been refuted by modern experts, because so many people interested in the subject remember that information and haven't looked at newer info lately. Plus, the old information is often easier to find, since the books have been published repeatedly and passed around, whereas the newer stuff will take awhile to gain notice by anyone but people studying that subject or people that neurotically research it (like me and some others on this board :p).

Just as parenting goes, when you know your kid, you know.

Obviously we can't know without seeing it. As stated, it MAY be dominant behavior (we don't see your dog, so we can't say it for sure is or isn't - we're just trying to give you info so you can accurately determine if it is or not), but even if it is, it is not necessarily something to worry about. Unless it turns aggressive or the other dog has an issue with it, it's not dangerous, just distasteful. And us humans OFTEN discourage behavior in our dogs that we find distasteful, even if it's safe or normal. So if you find it distasteful (as I do), by all means discourage it. Discouraging it is going to be about the same tactic whether it's a dominant dog, or just play behavior. Stop the behavior and redirect. Stop the behavior is soon as possible (if you see the dog even START To mount, stop them).
You can't really MAKE your dogs establish a different pecking order (and people that try to alter a pack's pecking order often cause more issues than they fix anyway), if one dog is more dominant to another dog, that dog will be more dominant. But you can discourage certain behaviors that result from the dog's personality.
You can also discourage certain behaviors by adding exercise in, making your dogs' routines more structured (dogs without structure often act out in odd ways), and engaging them in more play activities with YOU.
Left to their own devices they will try to make their own routine, find their own ways to release their energy (ways that are distasteful to us, like humping), and put their effort into things we DON'T want them doing. The more opportunities you give them to positively establish a relationship with each other and you, through play and activities that YOU encourage, the less they'll try to find their own ways.

We have lots of dog friends who we are around often and we dog sit for all the time for a day or two, they are not strangers and she did not do it with them. Just wanted to address that.

I didn't necessarily mean the dogs had to be complete strangers. But as an anology, you're going to act different with your brother or sister, or parents, in general, than a cousin that stays at your house, even if fairly often. You have different boundaries depending on the social situation.
Dogs are the same way. Dogs will act different with a dog that permanently resides in their home than dogs that just visit.
And also, as with humans, length of time they're around them isn't the only factor to what boundaries they have. You know how you sometimes really like someone right off the bat, and will open up to them easily, or don't like others? Dogs are the same way. He may just feel a certain way about the dog he's humping, and not feel that way about the others. Doesn't mean he dislikes the dog he's humping or wants to dominate it (though don't get me wrong, it COULD), it may just mean him and that dog as a pair have more open boundaries than him and other dogs.
And anyway, dogs will test each other, unrelated to dominance. The dog he's humping has been tested in other ways to see if they'll allow certain stuff, and eventually it worked up to the humping. The other dogs may have shut his advances down before it ever worked up to that point.
I know the last part is a bit confusing. Let me put it this way. You go up to your friend and put your arm around them. They are obviously uncomfortable with that type of physical contact, for whatever reason, or even tell you so. So in the future you avoid it, and you definitely won't hug them or something. Doesn't mean they don't like you, or you don't like them, but their boundaries indicated they were uncomfortable with that type of physical contact, so you never worked up to further physical contact.
Another friend comes up and puts their arm around you. So when they leave you decide to give them a hug and they smile and hug you back. Now every time you see them you give them a big hug and ask how they're doing. In this instance the friend indicated the initial physical contact was acceptable, so a hug seemed like it would be ok too.


So hopefully that made sense. The other dogs shut down any physical advances that would have led to the humping so it never got to that point. This particular dog allowed him to go further and further by not indicating any boundaries against such, so it worked up to humping eventually, and now it's kind of a habit/ritual. So you can instead take it into your own hands and indicate that this "ritual" is NOT ok with YOU even if it's ok with both of THEM and prevent it in the future (or as much as possible).
This is unrelated to whether the humping is due to dominance or something else, I'm now just talking about why it probably doesn't happen with the other dogs.

cassingermany
May 14th, 2011, 05:26 AM
Thank you, Mybirdisevil! :-) Nice name, btw.

3 Laughing Dogs
May 14th, 2011, 05:39 AM
It IS a sign of dominance and what your doing is correct but what I'd also do is "claim" the puppy also. This will show Anna that the puppy is not hers but yours. When this act is going on, continue what you do but then put yourself between the two with the puppy behind you and Anna in front of you. Gradually take steps towards her until she submits. Don't stop until she sits or lays down in submission but make sure you always infront of her facing her. Follow her if she walks away or ignores you. The second she submits though, walk away and continue with the day as though nothing happened!! Or you can reward the action with affection or a treat. I'd prefer the first cause in a doh's world, dogs don't give dogs treats for rewards. By doing this, you are re enforcing good, or positive, behavior

Stinkycat
May 14th, 2011, 02:51 PM
Depends on what is going on BEFORE she mounts her.

Dogs will mount in an excited mind state. And does NOT always mean dominance (scientifically proven).

DO NOT use corrections, this does nothing unless your correction is harsh enough to leave a lasting imprint in her brain - but this could also have a negative impression on the pup (which you don't want).

Keep track of your older dog's body language right before it happens, what is going on? Is the puppy doing nothing? Is the puppy running around?

You need to catch her JUST before she goes to mount the pup and use a positive interrupter (such as a low whistle, kissy noise). Please condition your dog to a positive interrupter http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TBvPaqMZyo8 .

SamIam
May 14th, 2011, 03:42 PM
My assessment of your situation is that this IS dominance. It is natural for the old dog to try to instill in the new one from the start that she ranks above the new dog. In the end, when both are adults, they will work it out between themselves, and sometimes it is the new dog who "takes over." Not all old dogs do it, not all new dogs initiate it, but no reason to worry that you are seeing it now.

Most likely you would see the behaviour when your new puppy is demanding or receiving something very valuable such as treats or attention. Humping is a normal and non-aggressive communication between your two dogs, and there are many other harmless displays of dominance and submission that you will continue to see displayed between the two dogs in play and throughout their lives.

Let dogs be dogs.

3 Laughing Dogs
May 14th, 2011, 04:16 PM
Depends on what is going on BEFORE she mounts her.

Dogs will mount in an excited mind state. And does NOT always mean dominance (scientifically proven).

DO NOT use corrections, this does nothing unless your correction is harsh enough to leave a lasting imprint in her brain - but this could also have a negative impression on the pup (which you don't want).

Keep track of your older dog's body language right before it happens, what is going on? Is the puppy doing nothing? Is the puppy running around?

You need to catch her JUST before she goes to mount the pup and use a positive interrupter (such as a low whistle, kissy noise). Please condition your dog to a positive interrupter http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TBvPaqMZyo8 .

Dogs will mount in an excited minded state. - excitement is a negative (dominant) sign that can be read by other dogs as an aggreessive dominance (evey situation brings different reactions). So that leads back to the domination position the dog is taking. Fight or flight are the FIRST things that a dog determines. Then it desides if its going to ignoee it or face it and which position it will take being dominant or submissive.

3 Laughing Dogs
May 14th, 2011, 04:36 PM
That being said, there is many different things that can be factoring in that you may not be seeing or things you may not think is relevant to the situation. A good thing to do is to educate yourself on canine body language. The web is a great resource and can be very helpful in getting you alittle more intune with what is going on with your dogs and others.

millitntanimist
May 15th, 2011, 09:18 AM
It IS a sign of dominance and what your doing is correct but what I'd also do is "claim" the puppy also. This will show Anna that the puppy is not hers but yours.
As I said earlier, dominance is not a synonym for control, dogs control resources not each other.

I'd prefer the first cause in a doh's world, dogs don't give dogs treats for rewards.
Dog's "in the wild" do not put leashes on each other, dictate each other's bowel movements, limit how they interact with their environment (e.g. chewing), or ask one another to perform arbitrary behaviors (like sit). Your dog knows that you are not a dog, it has evolved for for 15,000 years to treat you like a human.

SamIam
May 15th, 2011, 11:44 AM
They control resources, but they do not believe in private ownership of them. They establish a hierarchical relationship and top dog gets first pick of food, toys, resting area, etc. My concern is that is the dogs are prevented from displaying normal harmless communication and establishing a proper relationship between themselves it can turn nasty later. This is not a situation where two stranger-dogs are sizing each other up and about to start a fight, they are family/pack members who will both be more comfortable if they are allowed to establish a relationship. It is the equals who tend to fight one another. If you side WITH the more dominant dog, you will have a happier safer family.

Stinkycat
May 15th, 2011, 03:29 PM
Dogs will mount in an excited minded state. - excitement is a negative (dominant) sign that can be read by other dogs as an aggreessive dominance (evey situation brings different reactions). So that leads back to the domination position the dog is taking. Fight or flight are the FIRST things that a dog determines. Then it desides if its going to ignoee it or face it and which position it will take being dominant or submissive.

Excitement is not a dominant behaviour, excitement is considered a stressor in dogs (there is good stress and bad stress), over-excitement to the point where the dog cannot calm down is a negative stress as this can be redirected and turn into aggressive behaviour. This is usually if the dog has a past of any aggressive behaviours, it's very rare that a happy go lucky dog that is over excited will turn aggressive without a trigger.

Aggressive dominance is fear based - these dogs bite first ask questions later. The dog is not biting the pup.

The fight or flight reactions are used when the dog perceives a situation to be life threatening. A dog will act out aggressively (biting, lunging, growling) or avoid (flight).

SamIam - completely right, dog's do NOT try to take ownership of one another.

millitntanimist
May 15th, 2011, 07:22 PM
They establish a hierarchical relationship and top dog gets first pick of food, toys, resting area, etc.
I don't know if that's true. Dog social relationships are a lot more fluid than their wolf cousins. Dogs don't form packs like wolves, a wolf pack is a family unit. They are groups of monogamous hunters. The "alpha" male and female are the breeding pair and the rest is made up of their juvenile or adult children - all of whom work to raise the next generation of pups (in fact, since the pups are offered all of the best resources and have a great deal of social freedom, I think there's a convincing argument to be made that they are dominant ;)). A wolf hierarchy is naturally more rigid because otherwise offspring would start breeding with parents and that makes for bad genetics. The size of a wolf pack is also directly dependent on the type of game available. Wolves in areas that only support small game do not form packs, there is too much competition.
In contrast, domestic dogs are non-monogamous scavengers. They occasionally form loose associational groups but that is not their "state of nature" unless they are beholden to a food source that requires it. They do not form groups that pool resources to raise young. Since almost all feral dog populations exist around human settlements and garbage dumps there is no need for a hunting group to form - again, too much competition for resources.
My point is coming, I swear :P
It is my experience that dogs in houses function much the same way. They do not form rigid "pack" hierarchies. One may take preference in food sources (we feed out dogs from puzzle toys), one may take first access to toys, and one may get the best sleeping spot. It's more of a free-for-all and the order is always subject to change. No one animal commands all resources all the time even if one animal is deferred to more often because they are more assertive in claiming said resources.

If you side WITH the more dominant dog, you will have a happier safer family.
In our house the best behaved dog gets first access to resources - this means that everyone behaves very well :).

SamIam
May 15th, 2011, 09:58 PM
My dogs are a pack. They are, however, a pack of dogs and not a pack of wolves.