Why does my dogs mount other dogs?

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One reader is worried about her young female labrador mounting dogs she meets on walks, a Your Dog expert explains some of the reasons this may be happening and offers possible solutions to the problem.

Male dogs mount females when mating so mounting or humping is often thought of as a purely sexual activity. However, mounting can be done by females too, and might be due to a dog feeling excited, anxious, or frustrated. While it is often unwelcome, especially when they attempt this with humans or other dogs, it is part of normal dog behaviour, although it isn’t expressed by every dog. 

It sounds as though there is a pattern with your Lab, as it’s always with other dogs following an energetic encounter, and especially unfamiliar dogs whose general behaviour she might not be able to predict. 

You can help her out by practising your recall so you feel more confident about calling her away before she would normally start mounting. 

Training lessons with an accredited instructor, such as those sourced through the Association of Pet Dog Trainers, or Dogs Trust’s Dog Schools, could be an enjoyable way to give you both confidence and practise valuable skills, including teaching her to interact with other dogs confidently, knowing she can come away to you if things are feeling a little too much. 

You could also help her to focus on different activities with you, such as playing hide-and-seek games with toys and treats, so she can have fun without the need to interact with other dogs.  

Finally, it would be worth having her checked over by your vet as well.

Sometimes, mounting might be a way for a dog to alleviate pain or tension, so it is well worth getting her checked over to rule out any discomfort.