When Do Male Dogs Start Humping?

If you’ve seen a male dog humping another dog or a human, you might have wondered when this behavior started. Contrary to popular belief, male dogs don’t begin humping only for sexual reasons.

So when do male dogs start humping, and why do they do it? Male dogs may start humping as early as 3-6 weeks old for non-sexual reasons and six months for sexual reasons, but it usually begins at one year. Six months is the average age male dogs reach sexual maturity and begin to lift their legs to urinate.

This article will discuss dog humping, aka mounting behavior. Read on to uncover why dogs mount, when it’s a problem, and what you can do about it.

Why Do Dogs Hump?

Humping is a normal part of canine sexuality seen often during playtime or when your dog is trying to assert dominance, to release pent-up energy or excitement, especially if he’s been frustrated or restrained.

Dogs that are anxious or stressed may also hump as a way to self-soothe. For example, if your dog is nervous about meeting new people, he may start humping to calm himself down.

Certain medical conditions can also lead to increased mounting behavior. For instance, if your dog has a urinary tract infection, it may start humping as a way to relieve the discomfort.

Why Do Dogs Hump? | How to Stop Dog Humping/Mounting | EveryDoggy

When Is Dog Humping a Problem?

In most cases, dog humping is normal behavior and isn’t cause for concern. However, there are certain situations when humping can become a problem.

For example, if your dog starts humping people’s legs or invading their personal space, it could signify aggression. This signal is especially true if your dog accompanies the behavior with growling or snapping.

If your dog starts humping objects in your home, such as furniture or toys, it could signify separation anxiety. This habit is your dog’s way of trying to comfort himself with the scent of your presence.

Do Female Dogs Hump?

While people mainly recognize humping in male dogs, female dogs may also hump for the same reasons.

Female dogs don’t typically hump as often as male dogs for sexual reasons; however, they may hump just as often for:

  • Play
  • To assert dominance
  • To release pent-up energy

How To Stop a Dog from Humping

If you’re concerned about your dog’s mounting behavior, you can do a few things to curb it.

Talk to a Vet

If your dog is humping excessively or if you’re concerned about his behavior, talk to your veterinarian. They can help you determine if an underlying medical condition or behavioral issue needs to get addressed.

Provide an Outlet for Energy

If your dog is humping because he’s full of energy, ensure he’s getting enough exercise. Dogs need at least 30 minutes of moderate exercise daily, but this may vary depending on:

  • Breed
  • Age
  • Size

You can also provide your dog with mental stimulation by teaching him new tricks, playing interactive games, and giving him puzzle toys.

Ignore the Behavior

In some cases, you may be able to stop your dog from humping simply by ignoring the behavior. If your dog is humping for attention, it may eventually give up if it doesn’t get the response it wants.

Of course, this won’t work in every situation, and you may need to try other methods if your dog doesn’t stop humping on his own.

Use Positive Reinforcement

You can try using positive reinforcement if you want to discourage your dog from humping.

For example, you can give your pup a treat whenever your dog stops humping or redirect his attention to another activity.

It’s critical to avoid scolding or punishing your dog for humping, as this may only make the behavior worse.

Consider Training

Sometimes, you may need to train your dog to stop humping. This training is often necessary if your dog is humping people or objects out of aggression or anxiety.

Consult a professional dog trainer to get started. They can help you create a customized training plan based on your dog’s needs.

Avoid Stressful Situations

If your dog is humping because he’s stressed or anxious, do your best to avoid situations that trigger his anxiety, which may mean avoiding dog parks and social gatherings.

You can also try desensitization training to help your dog become more comfortable in stressful situations.

When To Seek Help

Most of the time, dog humping is normal behavior that isn’t a cause for concern. However, there are certain situations when humping can become a problem.

If your dog is humping excessively or if you’re concerned about his behavior, talk to your veterinarian. They can help uncover whether there’s an underlying medical condition or abnormal behavior that needs addressing.

Why do dogs hump other dogs

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are a few commonly asked questions about when male dogs start humping and dog mounting behavior.

Is it normal for a three-month-old puppy to hump?

Yes. It’s normal for a three-month-old puppy to hump. At that young age, it’s most likely due to excitement and play than frustration or sexual reasons.

Should you let boy dogs hump?

Yes. There is nothing wrong with letting boy dogs occasionally hump, even if neutered.

If the humping is becoming obsessive, disturbing to guests, or concerning for any other reason, talk to your vet or a trainer about potential next steps.

What age do dogs usually hump?

Dogs may hump for non-sexual reasons as early as 3-6 weeks old, but for sexual reasons, they typically start humping between 6-8 months old.

How long do dogs continue to hump?

This innate behavior is linked with play, strength, and social standing and may last throughout the dog’s lifetime.

Neutering your dog might decrease the extent to which they hump, but there is no guarantee that neutering alone will eliminate humping for good.

Final Thoughts

If you’ve ever wondered when male dogs start humping, we hope this article has provided helpful information on the subject.

Dog humping is a natural, instinctive behavior that can start very early because it’s linked not only with sexual behavior, as it may seem, but also with dominance, social standing, play, and anxiety.

There is usually nothing to worry about when it comes to dog humping, but there are steps to take and resources to rely on if it becomes a problem for your dog.

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Nadine Oraby

My name is Nadine; I am a passionate writer and a pet lover. People usually call me by the nickname “Joy” because they think that I am a positive and joyful person who is a child at heart. My love for animals triggered me to create this blog. Articles are written by vets, pet experts, and me. Thanks for visiting. Your friend, Nadine!