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When is it play and when is it fighting
Old 04-16-2012, 06:55 PM   #1
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When is it play and when is it fighting

Charlie and Lucy get along real well, I think. They chase each other and bark and growl, roll around on each other and mouth each other's mouths/ears/tails/feet, etc. My question is when I should step in and say, enough is enough. I cannot tell for sure, but sometimes it seems the growling and whinning turns from play to frustration/irritation. I'll step in and break it up, only to have the one I thought I was rescuing turn around and entice the other to start it up again.

Should I just stay out of it and let them solve any problems that may arise?
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Old 04-16-2012, 07:41 PM   #2
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my bet is play fighting. Here is where learning dog body language comes in. Generally a good sign of play fighting is when they come back for more . Here is a good artlcle on this. http://dogtrainer.quickanddirtytips....-fighting.aspx
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Old 04-16-2012, 08:06 PM   #3
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They'll work it out.
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Old 04-16-2012, 08:15 PM   #4
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You'll know when the fight gets serious.........the tone totally changes. I've experienced it many times. I'm happy to report that Brookie has mellowed, and it's a rare occasion now.
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Old 04-16-2012, 09:43 PM   #5
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I have found often with most dogs you can tell the seriousness of their intent by the lips and the set of their shoulders. When play fighting you will often see lots of teeth, but often when things go south you will see a lot of sneering or snarly lips, and their posture will change to make them look almost bowwed up, shoulders up, heads down, eyes locked on their target. These are not always signs, but can be a good indication.

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Old 04-17-2012, 12:52 PM   #6
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Let them work it out. You'll know when is serious and even like that, one of them will stop.
The one or two times it has gotten serious here (for a second or so), all I say is Hey! or Stop! in a loud voice and both my dogs stop on their tracks. (gotta love that Mommy is Mad voice!)

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Old 04-17-2012, 02:22 PM   #7
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I was told that if you are REALLY concerned, break it up, and see if the one who seemed to be getting the worst of it goes back for more, or if they run to hide. If it was a game, they will go right back for more.
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