How to stop a dog fight?


Even if your dog is the sweetest of doggies, he is not immune to conflict with another of his fellow dogs. Indeed, fights between dogs are frequent and if they aim above all for everyone to impose themselves as the strongest in order to hide their vulnerability, they can lead to serious injuries to opponents. It is therefore better to be vigilant before the threats escalate and be ready to act as necessary to end the fight if it could not be avoided. Let’s take a look at this case.

How to stop a dog fight?

Why do dogs fight?

A fight between dogs can start for many reasons. The main factors that can cause this type of conflict are:

  • exclusive behavior with food, toys, the master or various objects that the dog does not want to share;
  • the will to defend itself if the animal feels in danger or attacked by the proximity of another dog;
  • the will to defend its territory when another dog enters its home;
  • the need to assert one’s hierarchical position within the group;
  • conflicts between males during breeding periods when it comes to obtaining the favors of a female;
  • conflicts between male and female dogs.

These reasons for fighting are the most frequent, but it is also not uncommon for a dog to be a fight for other reasons which can be traced back to a lack of education or socialization. Indeed, a puppy that has been separated from its mother too early or that has not been well cared for by her may not have acquired the basics of socialization and good canine behavior, which can push him to be more aggressive insofar as he does not know how to behave in front of other doggies or understand them. On the other hand, an abused and abused dog tends to be naturally more aggressive, because he can deduce that aggression is a normal means of communication.

Avoid dog fights: how to do it?

It is always better to avoid a conflict than to have to interrupt it, especially between two dogs. Luckily, there are some simple tips to achieve this.

  • Be sure to socialize your dog well from an early age by allowing him, any young puppy, to be in contact with his congeners regularly and in peaceful and positive conditions. Maintain a regularity in these meetings over the years so that your dog keeps the habit of this contact and these exchanges.
  • When walking or leashing your dog, do not let him approach another animal. Indeed, he will tend to feel threatened, being unable to flee, and he will be aggressive to hide his feeling of vulnerability. Also, if you pull on his leash, he may assume he is in danger and become more aggressive.
  • When you meet a dog, your attitude can be important. Indeed, if you yourself are stressed or worried about the idea that your animal may fight, your dog will feel it and he can be aggressive. If you pet him when he sniffs a dog or growls at him, he may think you’re reassuring him and that he’s right to feel threatened.
  • The best thing to do when you come across a dog is to carry on as if nothing had happened.
  • Teach your pet the recall order from an early age. It is essential if you feel that your animal is threatening or that it may be the victim of an aggressive doggie.

These tips can help you avoid a fight. Nevertheless, sometimes the tension mounts quickly and it is important to act quickly so as not to let the conflict take hold. A fight is a game for dogs. Generally, for them, it is above all a question of imposing themselves by showing themselves as the strongest to avoid being threatened by the other. The ritual of this confrontation is generally always the same and is divided into several phases:

  • The dogs begin by observing each other from afar, each from their position. If one of the two doggies yields, the conflict stops there.
  • Each pooch seeks to intimidate his rival by showing aggression.
  • Appeasement then occurs in a third time. When the argument is over, the doggies can even lick each other’s muzzles.

It is always best to separate doggies before a fight breaks out, because even if your little companion is very gentle by nature, he can become particularly aggressive if he feels threatened. Also, you don’t know the dog’s reactions to it. Caution is therefore called for.

Stopping a fight between dogs: what to do when the conflict breaks out?

Despite your precautions, a conflict can break out. In this case, it is necessary to act quickly to prevent the animals from seriously injuring themselves, but not just anyhow. You have to manage the fight between dogs, here are the steps to follow.

Step 1

Stay calm, as much as possible, so as not to make the dogs even more excited and aggressive. No need to yell to make yourself heard, as the doggies won’t hear you, but they may feel encouraged to continue.

You can try a “stop!” strong and firm, but success is not guaranteed.

2nd step

Do not stand between the dogs and never put your hands near their mouths, because you can be bitten, including by your usually docile little companion.

You must act quickly and effectively to put an immediate end to the conflict. For this, here are our solutions:

  • spray the doggies with a bucket of cold water (or water bottle, water jet, etc.) to surprise them and divert their attention;
  • blind the dogs by throwing an opaque blanket or a jacket over them in order to encourage them to try to free themselves, which will distract them from the fight;
  • make a sudden loud noise to get their attention (whistle, trash can lids, pots, etc.);
  • stand behind the biting dog and grab his hind legs to unbalance him and push him to let go of his grip. Be careful never to grab a dog’s tail or testicles, as the sharp pain will cause him to seek to bite you.

Step 3

Once the conflict is interrupted, make sure to get the two opponents away as quickly as possible. It is useless to scold your animal, but allow him to let off steam to evacuate the aggression and the stress which have accumulated in him.

What to do when the conflict is over?

When you have been able to put an end to the fight, you must very quickly establish a climate of calm in order to prevent the two congeners from looking for each other again. Each of the masters must attach his dog to his leash and they must move away in opposite directions.

Go to a calm and safe place to allow you to reduce tensions. Examine your dog and if he is injured, take him to the vet.

If all is well, allow him to let off steam freely to release all the tension that has built up and the stress of the fight.

As for you, as a master, you need to play down the argument. Calm down, breathe and act normally. Avoid trying to cuddle or pet your dog, as you may cause him further anxiety and give him the impression that you are condoning his behavior. It is also useless to scold him. On the other hand, ask yourself about the origins of the conflict and think about the solutions to be put in place to prevent it from happening again. In addition, it may be wise to think of other means of encounters between dogs to allow your little companion not to stay on this event and to develop a stronger fear of his congeners.


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