Jo and Andy rang me to see if I could help with their two Collies who seemed to want to fight each other all the time, but only in their home. These two were siblings (brother and sister) and Jo had received advice
FREDDIE & DIZZYthat it had been a mistake to get siblings as this almost always ended in trouble.

They had been advised that the only real solution was to part with one of them, a decision that they just weren’t ready to make.

As it happens, I don’t agree with this often voiced view that it is a disaster to have sibling dogs and at one time I had three sibling Rottweilers without any problems whatsoever. For me, it’s more a matter of understanding canine rank and psychology rather than worrying about sibling rivalry. Clearly, it is much harder work to rear two puppies at the same time but this applies whether or not they are siblings.

On visiting them in their rural home, I witnessed a potential fight straight away as we entered the house. The dogs were playing happily together in the garden but as soon as they were called in, they started to show aggression towards each other as they came up the garden path. Jo advised me that this always happened and would usually escalate into a fight, the nearer they got to the house.

Obviously I ensured that their behaviour ceased and the rest of the assessment passed without incident. Jo advised me that the dogs would fight each other several times a day and had been doing so for over a year. The fights had become more intense and although they had not caused serious injury, Jo and Andy had been bitten whilst trying to separate them.

A few weeks later, I saw Jo and the dogs again for an environmental training session and a delighted Jo told me that there had been no further problems.

“Since you came to see us there have been no further fights, or anything remotely approaching a fight. We have had the very occasional grumble but nothing we couldn’t control and the atmosphere in the house is much more relaxed now. There was always a concern that not only might they hurt themselves, but also us when we tried to separate them and we also have a young child, so our concerns were very real. We had started to think we may have to re-home one of them, but that won’t be necessary so we are delighted with the help you have given us. Thank you
so much.” JO.