Why Do Male Dogs Hump Each Other?

Why Do Male Dogs Hump Each Other?

Dogs hump each other and do other strange and embarrassing things, but often there is a common reason behind this kind of behavior. Although humping is a natural behavior most of the time, it doesn't stop it from being an unpleasant sight.

Dogs can hump each other when they are still in the puppy stage, and they do it naturally without any sort of reason. This behavior can become a habit, or it could be a critical medical issue on a very rare occasion.

There are several possibilities why male dogs hump each other; most commonly, humping is considered to be a sexual behavior for dogs. Some other reasons for this behavior are:

Unless dogs are trained, and this goes for both male and female dogs, they will hump anything nearby. This even goes for canines that are sterilized and intact. If you have been around a dog for any length of time, you will notice that dogs will hump anything, from couch pillows to stuffed animals, from table legs to human arms.
The simple reason is that dog brains are involuntary about their humping. Male dogs hump other female and male dogs. On the other hand, human beings accredit ethical or moral structure to everything, including having a large range of contradictory conceptions of sexual propriety. That is why people think humping is odd or bizarre or sometimes laughable that sexual activity might happen outside of our own mental frameworks.

The Main Reason for Dogs Humping Other Male Dogs

Not just adult dogs', even puppies hump each other for pleasure. The range of answers to why male dogs hump each other should let us understand our questions about this behavior.

One of the main questions people have is wondering why female and male dogs continue to hump each other, toys, people, blankets, and a range of different things, even after they have been ''fixed''. Simply, mounting is a learned behavior that starts when dogs are small puppies.
Humping and mounting behaviors may appear in female dogs, male dogs, and puppies, and this behavior starts six weeks after birth. Once they get control of their tiny legs, they start humping each other. It is said that this kind of activity by dogs performs a series of functions, including exploration, play, and social hierarchy among the litter. Depending on the breed, size, or mix, once they fully grow and reach sexual maturity level, which may take between six months and one year of age, they start humping each other. Humping increases in its sexual element as they get older.

In general, humping is strongly correlated with sensual activity. It is less to do with reproduction and more to do with satisfaction. Female and male dogs, fixed and intact, hump because they learn that rubbing their sex organs has a gratifying feeling when they are puppies. As time passes, it develops into a habit, and an embarrassing one at that, if you are in public. If they are not trained when they are puppies, then it becomes more difficult to break this habit of humping and rubbing.

So Neutered Dogs Still Hump?

Sterilizing or spaying may reduce the sex drive in neutered dogs, but these procedures do not remove completely the joy stimulus, and this operation does not eradicate the functions that make dogs hump. Male dogs hump even after getting sterilized as they still might have an element of the proclamation of supremacy or social organization. However, sniffing, fighting, and territorial marking still take a larger role in dogs’ humping behavior. However, fixed male dogs hump other male dogs for various reasons, but most of the time this behavior can be controlled through training, distraction, or attention.

dog allergy

Other Reasons for Humping

Dogs Hump Each Other Due to Anxiety and Stress

In general, when dogs feel anxious or stressed, they yelp, bark, dig, howl, or rip out everything in the house. When dogs are not trained as puppies, this humping response can also be one way they show their distress. This humping might become the primary approach to stress relief with some dog breeds. This kind of behavior sometimes causes awkward situations or inconvenience on dog walks, and further, it could lead to fighting. This is not because your dog is being unruly; it is perhaps just very anxious. For unsocialized dogs, this is especially true.

Before you start discouraging your dog from humping, the best thing to do is to find out why your dog is exhibiting such behavior everywhere. As mentioned earlier, it can be tough to find out the precise reason, but first, you want to dismiss medical issues that might be causing this behavior. Urinary tract infection, priapism, skin allergies, or urinary incontinence could all be possible reasons for such behavior in your dog. If the humping happens infrequently, think about whether it is really a big deal.

If your dog's humping behavior worsens and becomes a concerning issue, you must start discouraging your dog's behavior. Distracting your pet dog with a game or toy when he starts mounting should be the first port of call, but if all else fails, then it may be time to get your pooch neutered.

Medical Issues

If your dog is showing excessive humping behavior and a lot of biting or licking at their genital area, it could be caused by some internal health issues. If your dog was humping sporadically, but now it is doing it frequently, it is an indication that your dog might have some allergies or UTI issues. Difficulty in urination can make the male dog find relief in whatever way, including humping.


In conclusion, male dogs hump other male dogs or toys, blankets, and many other things sporadically. If this is the case with your pooch, then it's likely nothing to worry about. It is a normal action that most male dogs perform; even neutered male dogs hump other dogs. If you have observed this behavior in the puppy stage, you can take a practical step by giving your dog positive training that helps control the humping. It will also help to prevent damaging and aggressive issues. If this behavior emerges later in life and becomes frequent, get a veterinary appointment as it could lead to a medical problem. 

About the Author

Kirsten Heggarty
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Kirsten created The Pet Handbook with the aim of sharing her knowledge about pets, pet food, healthy habits, and more. All of her advice is based on years of her own experience with her pets, and feedback that she has received from grateful readers about her tips. If you want to know more please read the About Me page.