Why does my dog stand over my other dog? A Step-by-Step Guide

What it means when dogs stand over other dogs

Dogs communicate a lot more than some people realize. Just because they do not talk does not mean they are not saying anything. Dogs relay messages are through barking, whining, and growling.

Their primary mode of communication is through body language, which is easier to understand if you are more familiar with the animal.

Typically, when a dog stands over another dog who is lying down, this is a sign that dominance is being asserted. The dog may also place a paw or chin on the lying dog’s shoulder.

Sometimes, the dog will attempt to raise themselves onto their tiptoes to appear larger than the other.

One dog standing over the other dog could be a sign of aggression, but there may be other factors to consider. It may be a sign that the ‘dominant’ dog is accepting the ‘submissive’ dog into their pack.

In the wild, there can only be one alpha leader of the pack, so they are establishing the roles. The alpha is taking on the role of protector, determined to take care of their pack.

Sometimes, it will be the smaller, female dog who is the submissive one, and the larger, male dog will be the alpha. Usually, both dogs will accept the hierarchy, and there are no future problems.

Another reason this occurs is that one dog wants to take control of the current situation. This is commonly seen among older dogs who are trying to control rowdy puppies.

However, it can also happen where puppies are trying to seem bigger and taller so that they feel they are controlling the situation in their way.

Why does my dog stand over my other dog?

When to be worried about standing behavior

If you notice signs of aggression and dominance in dogs, you may need to step in.

Assuming that one dog backs down and quietly accepts the dominant and submissive roles, the problem should resolve itself and you do not need to worry.

However, if both dogs are equally dominant, they may start to fight each other. In this case, you should intervene before the problem gets worse.

Why does my dog keep standing over my other dog?

Most experts who have weighed in on the topic of a dog standing over you, or another dog, seem to agree that this is an act of dominance. Your pooch might be trying to establish himself or herself as the Alpha in the pack. Again, this goes back to their primal instincts from their days of living in the wild.

Dog Aggression Towards Other Dogs Put a Stop to Dominant Behavior & Dog Aggression NOW!

Your dog may be standing over your other dog as a way of asserting dominance. Standing over a dog that is laying down or placing its chin or paws on another dog is a form of showing a higher social ranking in the “pack.” Turning their side towards another dog is a way of showing they have a lower social hierarchy.

Keep reading to learn more about how your dogs communicate dominance to each other and some tips for how to level the playfield so your dogs see each other more as equals.