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I need some advice. We have 2 female beagles, 20 weeks old, from the same litter. We thought they would be good company for each other. Things were great until a few weeks ago. Up until then, they would engage in the typical wrestling and hte occasional dominance battle.
Lately it seems to be almost non-stop battles to the point where blood has been drawn. They can be fine and then the one will attack the other. The one dog, Mastouche, seems to be the aggressor. for example, last night I was sending them out to pee before bed. Tinky (my son named her)kind of slid off the couch and did an endo on her back. Mastouche immediately jumped on her and attacked. Tinky bled. My wife threw water on them but it did noting. I grabbed the quilt, and covered them, then layed on them. Mastouche was relentless, sqirmed out and tried to attack again. I had to threaten to kick her while laying down to keep her away from Tinky.

We put her outside, while we cleaned up Tinky. As soon as she came back in, she sought out Tinky, literally hunting her and attacked her again.
They were separated through the night but this morning it happened again. Poor tinky is so afraid that she is peeing when attacked now. She used to try to fight back but Mastouche is bigger. No she just yelps and tries to get away.
I was bitten by Mastouche a few days ago while trying to break up one of these rows. I am very concerned for the safety of our small children.
Does anyone have tips on what is causing this and what we can do. We have made an appointment next week to take Mastouche to the Humane Society, but if we can fix it, we'd rather try that.

Thanks,
Tom
 

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It sounds like Mastouche is displaying dominance issues in this case. Have you established your family as the pack leaders yet? Some cases of agression can be attributed to the puppy or dog asserting claim of dominance over the pack.

Here are some resources to help you reclaiming your Alpha role...this might help Mastouche realize that she cannot act like she rules the roost:

http://dogs.about.com/cs/basictraining/a/alternatives.htm
http://www.smalldogsparadise.com/dog-behavior/how-to-establish-yourself-as-the-alpha-dog/
http://www.canismajor.com/dog/alpha1.html

Of course, you'll have to take what works for you from these sites. Keep in mind this isn't an overnight effort and will take some time. Puppyhood is a good time to start especially since they tend to test their position in the pack. Any signs of aggression must be corrected and addressed quickly. Again, I'm not entirely sure this is the issue with Mastouche, but it could be a start. Good luck!
 

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Great links! It's really unusual to have two pups from the same litter so aggressive and at such a young age.

From about 8 weeks old Bodie would play with our neighbor's beagle Patches. They both played very aggressive including what I perceive as play bitting. But neither dog has ever yelped or drew blood. So I think aggressive play is normal. The question is how do you distinguish that sort of play from fighting. Do the dogs growl or bark at each other? Also, you said everything was cool up until a few weeks ago, is there anything new in the house or to their routines?

Just a final thought. I'd really avoid the actions you took to try and stop the fighting. Putting a blanket over then while lying on it and then exhibiting a kicking motion is not good. You're a much bigger intimidating figure and your actions will probably only scare them and make them fearful of you. The best approach, no matter how hard, is to separate them immediately and put them in different rooms, crates, etc. Take a breather and then figure out your next step.
 

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I have a friend at work with golden retriever sisters who similarly would fight to the point of drawing blood when puppies, but they survived and worked it out and four years on they are the best of friends. I agree with Java that the key is for the humans to establish that you are dominant over both of them... I don't think there is an easy solution, unfortunately.
 

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Are they fixed? I would assume not yet at their age, but they are getting to the point where they can be and I would suggest that. Not that it is a cure, but it may mellow our the aggressor.

Best of luck!
 

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Originally Posted By: ZookeeperAre they fixed? I would assume not yet at their age, but they are getting to the point where they can be and I would suggest that. Not that it is a cure, but it may mellow our the aggressor.

Best of luck!
Oh, I forgot to mention in my post that my friend's sister puppies did seem to mellow after being spayed. That is still a while away, but is something to keep in mind.
 
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