Controlling Rough Play

There is nothing I enjoy more than watching two dogs playing nicely together. When you take your dog to the local park or the beach and he finds another dog to play with, it is essential that you make sure that your dog learns not to play too rough.

I would suggest you stop the play if your dog:

  • Uses his teeth to hang on to the other dog’s skin
  • Grabs and or shakes the other dog
  • Mounts the other dog
  • Pins the other dog to the ground repeatedly 
  • Body slams the other dog
  • Growls threateningly   
  • Raises his hackles and stands over the other dog

To stop the play, call your dog to you. If he does not respond immediately, go and fetch him. Get your dog to sit or lie down next to you until he is completely calm and relaxed. You can then let him continue playing.

Breeds originally bred for fighting or ratting can have a short fuse and play can quickly spill over into fighting. You will need to be extra vigilant if you have one of these breeds.    

Always keep an eye on your dog when he is playing and learn to read his body language and energy.  This will help you to prevent an incident.

3 Responses to “Controlling Rough Play”

  • Chris Roman says:

    One must also be careful about the dogs that you allow yours to play with as the other dogs might be a bit unstable themselves which can cause your dog to also get anxious or defensive.

    Calm dogs are always the best ones to let yours play with as this can prevent unnecessary roughness.

  • nick says:

    Hi my name is nick , iv just gotten a husky puppy , he is now 10 weeks old , I understand huskgs are alot of work , one of my main problems are that he is too rough with our other 2 dogs , a poodle and sosage dog , I tried your trick to call him ovrr and lay him next to me but nothing is working , he is actully hurting the other dogs with his sharp teeth , by jumoing on them and biting them , I domt know what to do

    • julie says:

      Hi Nick
      Your pup should be separated from your older dogs for a while until you get better control over him. Introduce the pup gradually, keeping him on a lead. Always supervise all interactions between your dogs – never leave them together unattended. Huskies have a very strong prey drive and are know to kill small animals – cats, squirrels etc. it is important that your pup learns good manners from day 1. I would also suggest you sign up for a puppy class as soon as possible. The techniques in this article are more suited to adult dogs who have had some training.

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