How to Keep Your Dogs From Fighting & Safely Break Up Fights

Precocious pups can go from playful to aggressive in a moment. As a pet owner, you need to know how to keep dogs from fighting at home so you and your canines can live in peace.

Turn to the most trusted dog training experts in NJ if you experience issues with dog fights or other aggressive behaviors.

Understand Triggers

Dogs react to stress by fighting. Understanding what triggers their stress is key to preventing future scuffles at home.

Consider any new changes to the dog’s normal environment. Introducing a new dog to one that’s already established territory in your home can be stressful on both canines. Dogs also notice when your routine as an owner changes and may respond poorly.

Your dogs may be overprotective and resort to fighting as a way of guarding you or their possessions.

Examine Body Language

Are you curious about how to keep dogs from fighting before the first pounce? Your dog’s body language conveys when it is stressed, scared, or borderline aggressive. Signs that your dog is stressed include:

  • Pacing
  • Vocalizing
  • Tucking their tail

Pinpoint these signs and try to calm your dog to ease stress.

If your dogs are playing, look for body language and behavior cues to tell the difference between dog playing and fighting. When you know the cues that precede a fight, you can employ training tactics whenever your dog exhibits them.

A dog that freezes in its tracks is usually ready to fight. The fur on its back standing up indicates another common sign of aggression, along with giving a hard, locked stare.

Use Distractions

When your dogs’ playful wrestling escalates into full-fledged fighting, use noise to distract them. Giving verbal commands, clapping, or whistling are the first steps you can take to break up the fight. If those prove ineffective, try louder sounds such as an air horn.

Sprays serve as good distractions too. Keep a bottle of strong-scented lemon juice or vinegar spray nearby and spray it in between dogs to keep them from attacking each other.

Separate Dogs

If a smelly spray or loud noise doesn’t halt aggression, you need to intervene by physically separating the dogs. Be mindful not to reach for their heads or collars or place yourself in the middle of multiple dogs during a fight. Instead, prioritize your safety and use a household item to separate the animals.

You can place a chair, laundry basket, or even a blanket between the dogs to keep them apart. Another technique worth trying is the wheelbarrow method. This entails grabbing a dog’s hind legs, lifting them into the air, and walking as if they are a wheelbarrow.

Upon successfully distancing them, lead one dog away and place them in separate rooms.

Professional Dog Training

Even with these tips, dogs and owners alike will benefit from professional dog training. Courses that teach obedience and socialization can prevent aggressive behavior and fights among your dogs.

Learn how to keep dogs from fighting and spot signs of alpha dog behavior with the Dan Gentile Dog Training Center. Call (732) 938-5040 to start training your dog.