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Why Do Dogs Living Together Fight? Understanding and Prevention

“Why do dogs living together fight” is one of the first questions that comes to the mind of pet parents who have recently adopted a new canine companion, and this new friend doesn't get along with their good old buddy. If you find yourself in a similar situation, the first thing to know is that conflicts between two dogs are not solely about territoriality; they can also be related to the routine each dog is accustomed to and their level of sociability, which is influenced by both genetic background and upbringing. Additionally, paying attention to home conditions is essential to avoid fights between two dogs living together.

But, relax! This article will tell you the main reasons why two dogs living together might fight, and it will also share tips to prevent these conflicts and promote good cohabitation in your home. Keep reading!

How to Tell If Two Dogs Are Fighting or Playing?

Dogs have different ways of expressing and interacting compared to humans. Sometimes, two dogs are just playing in a very dog-like manner, but their humans get alarmed by their rough movements and perhaps a nip or two. They might try to separate them, thinking it's a fight. This is quite common and usually happens when a pet parent is not familiar with the body language of dogs. A dog that has a friendly behavior while interacting with another dog shows very different body signals compared to one that is upset or angry.

So, the most efficient way to determine if two dogs are fighting or playing is to pay attention to their posture, gestures, or actions while interacting. In the article “Dog Postures and Their Meanings,” we discuss in more detail the calming signals indicating that a dog is trying to defuse a situation that bothers them, as well as the main signs that precede a direct attack on another dog. To help you quickly identify when a conflict is brewing between two dogs, here are the main signs of defensive and offensive behavior in dogs:

Defensive Posture in Dogs:

Offensive Posture in Dogs:

Reasons Why My Dogs Are Fighting?

Now that you've learned how to differentiate between two dogs playing and fighting, if you notice that yours are not getting along, it's time to ask yourself why these conflicts are happening. Identifying the reason two dogs living together are fighting is the first step to act appropriately to make them get along. Let's see, then, what the main causes of conflicts between dogs sharing the same territory are:

What to Do If My Dogs Living Together Are Fighting?

When two dogs living together are fighting, your action plan should be aimed at calming the situation, not aggravating it by increasing stress and anxiety levels inherent in a conflict. So, forget about yelling, scolding, or punishing your dogs. Keep calm, and if the fight has already started, try to implement these tips to separate two dogs fighting.

On the other hand, if we are talking about a conflict situation that has not yet evolved into a fight, we recommend doing the following:

Preventing Conflicts Between Dogs:

Tips to Separate Two Dogs Fighting:

If your dogs are already in the middle of a fight, here are some tips to help you separate them safely:

Understanding and addressing the factors contributing to conflicts among cohabiting dogs is crucial for fostering a positive and peaceful atmosphere. By implementing preventive measures and seeking professional guidance when needed, you can ensure a happy and harmonious life for your canine companions.

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Alberto Pardal, As an expert in the dog world, I provide valuable information about dog breeds. With years of experience, I offer informative articles to help owners better understand their pets and promote a healthy bond