Puppies can be a lot of fun, but they can be quite a handful, too, especially when they're at their most playful and spirited. If you have two spayed female puppies, don't be surprised if you catch them attempting to mount each other. Not only do mounting behaviors appear in female dogs, they also even frequently appear in fixed ones.
Why Puppies Mount
Puppies mount objects, humans and random objects for many reasons. When they attain reproductive maturity, the action can be a result of intense hormones -- even if they're spayed. When a dog gets spayed, the surgery extracts a significant amount of her hormones, but not 100 percent of them. Outside of hormone-driven behavior, young puppies frequently hump each other when they're engaged in lively playtime, too. Canines in general, regardless of age, frequently mount individuals and objects as a means of expressing their high social status -- or dominance. Some dogs even mount as a way of getting others to acknowledge them. Others do so to strengthen their rapport with friendly dogs. While female dogs do sometimes mount, the behavior is more common in males, notes author Jolanta Benal in "The Dog Trainer's Complete Guide to a Happy, Well-Behaved Pet."
Mounting and Medical Woes
Some mounting behaviors in dogs are related to medical issues -- among them, urinary tract infections and skin allergies. Fixed female canines are particularly susceptible to urinary tract infections, the ASPCA website advises. If your pups' mounting behaviors seem ongoing, rather than occasional or simply a part of playtime, they could be due to health troubles. Bring your pooches in for a veterinary checkup immediately to assess this possibility. If the mounting is indeed the result of a medical issue, managing it could promptly eliminate or reduce the pesky behavior.
No Stopping Necessary
If your two spayed puppies attempt to mount each other a lot, you don't have to stop the behavior as long as you have no fear that aggression is about to follow, says veterinarian and author Sheldon L. Gerstenfeld in the book "ASPCA Complete Guide to Dogs." They might simply be playing. If neither puppy seems upset or irked by the mounting, you can leave them be. Mounting is a typical canine action, whether it serves to declare dominance or it is a simple curious playtime behavior. Since both pups are spayed females, the risk of possible pregnancy doesn't exist either.
If one of your puppies attempts to mount the other, and you detect a fight on the horizon, nip the whole thing in the bud immediately by interjecting. Look at the mounter and firmly say "Stop" or your similar command. Then teach her that the mounting behavior is inappropriate by separating her from everyone -- including yourself -- for a couple of minutes. By doing this, you'll teach her that mounting isn't a good idea and hopefully prevent future such scuffles between your pets. If one of your puppies ever tries to mount any humans in your household, stop the behavior by using the same technique. It's important for dogs to quickly learn that mounting people isn't OK. If your dog thinks she's in charge of the people in your home, you'll have behavioral challenges down the line. Remember, mounting is a key act of canine dominance.
- Your Yorkshire Terrier Puppy Month by Month; Liz Palika and Debra Eldredge
- Oh My Dog; Beth Ostrosky Stern and Kristina Grish
- Adoptable Dog; John Ross and Barbara McKinney
- The Dog Trainer's Complete Guide to a Happy, Well-Behaved Pet; Jolanta Benal
- ASPCA Complete Guide to Dogs; Sheldon L. Gerstenfeld
- Teach Yourself Visually - Dog Training; Sarah Hodgson
- Training Your Pug; Brenda Belmonte
- Village Veterinary Hospital: Boxing, Mounting, Rearing and Pouncing
- ASPCA: Mounting and Masturbation
- Dog to Dog Communication; Jamie Shaw
- Russell Illig/Photodisc/Getty Images