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Discussion Starter #1
Hello,
I have 2 dogs - Lucy and Lily. Lucy is 13 months, Lily is 7 months old. Lucy is a sweet dog, and "plays well" with other dogs (we go to a dog park).

However, now that we have Lily, and whenever I bring her with Lucy to the dog park, Lucy sometimes will get in fights (growling, tussling, showing teeth) with other dogs (not Lily). I hate to blame Lily, but it only really started when we got her. But she's not the one fighting.

Also, at home, Lily is alpha (which surprised me -being she is younger and smaller than Lucy).

I don't understand this new fighting at the dog park. I guess the only thing I can do, is to bring my dogs seperately?
 

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Older dogs will often protect the younger members of the pack if they perceive a threat. That has nothing to do with 'Alpha'. You're really better off tossing that whole idea out and just concentrate on the behaviors.
Dog parks are only as good as the owners and their dogs. If the owners know what good play looks like, what bullying looks like, can recognize a fearful dog, have great recalls/control and are diligent about shots and health then, it can be a good place.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thank you. i appreciate your responses. It would be great if we could know our dogs' thoughts and read their minds for even one minute!

I may just bring them seperately to the park and see what happens.
 

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It could also be that Lucy is now maturing and sometimes when they hit that age there behavior takes a turn for the worse. Continue to socalize as much as possible but only for a minute at a time and treat and praise for all good interaction, then move on.

By continually having good, short interactions she should soon again preceive meeting new dogs as a good thing.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
It could also be that Lucy is now maturing and sometimes when they hit that age there behavior takes a turn for the worse.
Hmm...that was in the back of my mind, but I didn't want to think it! She's always been welcome at both dog parks we frequent.

I'll try to bring her alone, however, sometimes that means she'd be the sole dog at the park. It's hit or miss around here with doggy attendance.
 
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