Puppy Forum and Dog Forums banner

1 - 5 of 5 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
11 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey all. Haven't posted in a while but had something happen that really startled me and wanted to see if this is a bigger concern or just a tiff.

I have two Bernese mountain dogs. Rocky we got at 8 weeks. He's now turning 7 actually next week. Been a great dog. Super gentle giant. We go anywhere with him around dogs. Not always the best manners with other dogs. Never aggression more so just being right in there face thinking he's a Yorkie and wanting to play. Which is common with most Berners. Every dog who has ever been aggressive with him he normally turns his back and ignores. I've seen it happen at the vets where he doesn't even react to dogs who are losing there minds barking at him.

Few years ago we had a breeder use rocky as a stud. And we took pick of the litter for the deal. That is where Cosmo came in the picture. Cosmo is now 2.5. Also intact. The two of them have been best friends since day one. Cosmo came to us at 8 weeks as well and it was funny watching rocky raise him. As Cosmo got bigger we noticed lots of typical wrestling and playing. Never any teeth shown, or growling etc. Not at feeding time nothing. They sleep in the mudroom I made them a house that has two seperate sides divided by a divider. But if they come out of the house there is a common shared area for them. They literally never spend any day time in there. Just typically around 10pm when I send them to bed. Then all day they are free outside with us on the farm.

Well it's midnight here as at around 11ish I woke up to what sounded like other dogs were in my house having a royal rumble . obviously it was not other dogs it was my two dogs. I quickly came over opened the door which stopped the fight. But from when it woke me up then for me to make sense of the noises then run over there. It was at least a minute or two. And it was loud the entire time. When I came in both dogs looked like it was a blood bath. But after closer inspection it looks like they both had some open skin with blood. But with the long coats it looked like the side of each of their faces were soaked in blood. But it was in fact lots of saliva I guess mixed with some blood as the cuts are quite small. I was able to treat them both and have them sepereated right now.

I am concerned. Was this the younger dog taking over from the older dog? Is one of my dogs maybe stressed about something? I have no idea how to take this. Again neither dog has never ever shown any aggression to people or dogs before. Nevermind each other.

Thanks
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
2,639 Posts
I'm really sorry you're dealing with this, it sounds awful, and I'm glad the injuries were fairly superficial!

Unfortunately the chances of figuring out what exactly triggered the fight are pretty slim, unless it happens again while you're watching. Maybe the older dog has some sore joints and the younger dog stepped on him in a way that really hurt. Maybe the younger dog is being more of a jerk now that he's reaching sexual maturity and the older dog had enough (we've had a couple altercations between my boys now that my youngest is old enough to start asserting himself more, though usually over high-value food or chew items). Maybe there was an upsetting sound or smell from outside (or a mouse or something inside?) that got them worked up.

Splitting them up when you can't supervise is a good idea for a while, just to prevent any escalation if there is rude or inappropriate behavior happening when you're not watching. I'd also want the vet to check both dogs over for hidden issues like joint/muscle pain or anything that might be physically stressing them. I hope it was just a fluke one-off occurrence and things settle down for everyone.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,289 Posts
^^^ I agree with DaySleepers. A thorough vet check and strict supervision and separation when you can't supervise is in order. I would also advise that you be prepared to institute a permanent separation protocol if they start fighting while supervised. There are some dogs that are prone to same sex aggression, no matter what.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 3GSD4IPO

·
Registered
Joined
·
713 Posts
I'm probably on the conservative side in these things since the likelihood I'll be alone with two big dogs when they get into it is high - as is the chance I'll be unable to separate the dogs or get hurt myself (older woman).

Anyway, the fact is I live with two Rottweiler bitches who are permanently separated because of aggression from the older. Yet the fact also is there's never been visible blood after an attack. The most I've found are scabs at the site of the holding bite days after the incident. However, since I've seen all 3 attacks (and my carelessness is responsible for the 2d and 3d ever happening), I know the intention of the attacker is to do major harm. A friend was present for the second attack and our conversation afterward included something like the following:

Me: There's no doubt Story wants to kill.
Friend: Yeah, and it's a good thing she's not very good at it.

The problem, of course, is Story got better with each try and would eventually get good enough to do real harm. Also, it probably made things less bloody because Teagan is a total coward and never did anything but cower and scream.

It's also true, which sounds similar to your situation, that Story, the aggressor, is a serious dog, and Teagan, the victim, is an idiot who behaves in a manner highly likely to provoke a serious dog.

All of which is to say, in your shoes I wouldn't try to convince myself what happened was an isolated incident. Yes, vet check and all that, but I'd never leave these two alone together again, and you might want to seriously consider what you're going to be able to do if two dogs the size of Berners get into a fight under your nose.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,816 Posts
Separate them, especially when you cannot watch.

Why, (unless a physical reason that has a medical cure/management) is unimportant. Aggression typically escalates over time. Hurt dogs and vet bills are not worth the risk.
 
1 - 5 of 5 Posts
Top