My dog rides other dogs: why and what to do?


The overlaps between dogs are often badly perceived by the owners because they see it as a disturbing sexual behavior in society and sometimes even very early in their puppy.

In order to remove annoying behavior, you must first understand it, know where it comes from, find out how it was born and especially why!

I therefore invite you to find here some tips that can explain the behavior of your dog towards his congeners. There is no single reason and even less a quick fix, you have to know how to observe your dog, understand him and find a solution that will suit him.

The reasons which push a dog to ride his congeners

Your dog rides other dogs following a rise in hormones

It is dogs that reach the age of adolescence (variable age depending on the dog) that are affected by this cause. Besides, in the majority of overlapping cases due to hormone surges, it is not only the other dogs that pay the price: your leg, a cushion, or any object on which your dog can let off steam.

It should also be noted that this behavior concerns both males and females.

Your dog rides other dogs to demand attention

A dog which does not manage to attract the attention of its congeners (valid also for behaviors of overlap towards the humans) will find a thousand and one tricks to achieve its ends. The overlap therefore remains the last attempt which will, normally, certainly have its effect.

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And even if the feedback is “negative”, the dog that rides will be satisfied with this response, which is exactly what he wanted: to be taken care of.

Your dog rides other dogs because he is too excited

This behavior is often observed during play sessions between several dogs with the same energy. The tension and excitement are such that the dog has no other solution than overlapping to evacuate its overflow of energy.

So fear not, this behavior is absolutely not bad, as long as all the dogs manage to communicate with each other on the possible refusals in the face of overlap, no need to intervene: they will know how to “say” things to each other.

Your dog rides other dogs after too much stimulation

This goes a little with the previous cause, but it also includes a negative emotion, such as stress, for example. This can be a way for the dog to get out of a situation in which he is not comfortable, be it positive or negative excitement.

This behavior is observed when the overlaps follow a well-marked trigger (the arrival of guests, another dog or the birth of an environment rich in stimulation, etc.).

Your dog rides other dogs because he wants to play with them

This cause is similar to that of overlap to attract attention. A dog which meets another dog and which will ask him to play will make him understand by having a posture of play (with flat stomach, buttocks in the air), by barking, by nibbling, and also by overlapping it.

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As long as this behavior is accepted by the other dog opposite, and your dog manages to stop and move on quickly, I do not see any concern that this behavior occurs punctually.

Your dog rides other dogs out of desire / need for breeding

This is certainly the most obvious reason, and yet the least frequent. Indeed, I observe daily dogs that overlap other dogs but absolutely not for the sake of breeding. More often, it is indeed dogs that overlap for reasons of lack of expenditure and therefore of too full of energy.

However, it is obvious that if a bitch in heat rubs your dog, it will be difficult for him to hold back. And be aware that, even if your dog is neutered, if the operation was done a little late (that is to say after his 1 year), the overlap reflex can still persist.

I have also experienced this with my dogs: I took my whole dog for a covering and I naively took my neutered dog, not thinking that this would be a problem … Now, my dog ‚Äč‚Äčnot neutered didn’t care about the¬†female in heat¬†and my neutered dog only had eyes for her.

What attitude should you adopt when your dog overlaps his fellow dogs?

  •  You must first understand why your dog does this and this will go through observing his reactions to different contexts, understanding the triggers, but also by observing the dogs that your dog “attacks” ¬Ľ(Their character, their gender, their general attitude, etc.).
  •  Never make the shortcut of thinking that an overlapping dog is a dominant dog! It is a well-established idea, but it is nonetheless completely obsolete. Intra-specific dominance is much more complex than that it is not only reduced to overlapping on congeners, it is accompanied by many other behaviors.
  •  Your best ally will be prevention and anticipation. If you have observed the different moments that triggered your dog, then intervene before these moments arrive and redirect your dog to a more suitable activity.
  •  Reinforce the basic indications that will help you stop your dog in his behavior: basket, stop, etc. Clearly, teach your dog how to give up. You must nevertheless teach him that to give up is to win, and to do so, you must always follow an order to give up a positive activity for the dog.
  •  Spend your dog well, be it physically, mentally and in an olfactory way so that he can evacuate his possible overflow of energy other than by riding his fellows.
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