7 Reasons Why Do Dogs Hump & How To Stop This Behavior

7 Reasons Why Do Dogs Hump & How To Stop This Behavior

Author WDF Staff


If you are a dog owner, most probably you witness your dog humping. Your dog could hump other dogs, people, and even you. But why do dogs do it? Is humping a sign of dominance, or is it something else? Although this is considered normal and inherited dog behavior, it could be embarrassing and undesirable if your dog does it often.

Many owners get stunned when they see their female dog starts to hump, but the truth is that both male and female dogs can show this behavior. There are different methods to stop this dog behavior, and we will explain them later. In the meantime, let's find out why dogs hump.

Why do dogs hump?

If your dog hump, you can relax because this is normal dog behavior, and you are not alone. Many dog owners have reported that their dogs started to hump at some point in their life. As you may think, humping is connected with showing dominance and sexual nature, but these are less common reasons why dogs hump. Let's look at the main reasons why your dog will start humping.

1. Dominance

Most dog owners will tell you that dogs hump because they try to show dominance. With recent studies, this theory is not so likely. Dogs could start humping to establish dominance, but this is not the main reason in most cases. Not much evidence suggests dogs will hump because of power; until we get some, we will leave this theory aside.

dog looking at owner

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2. Sexual

For unneutered dogs, is it completely normal to hump females because of their hormones (especially if the female is in heat). This is their natural instinct, and there is nothing wrong with their behavior.

However, if your male dog tends to do it a lot, you could have problems controlling the dog, and your daily walks could become a nightmare. If you have this problem, we suggest you seek professional help.

3. Playing

If you are in a dog park and your dog starts to mount out of the blue, it could be because he is happy because they are playing. While playing, dogs could exhibit all kinds of different behavior, and most of them are harmless.

dog humping owner

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4. Attention seeking

Some owners reported that their dogs started to hump different objects when bored. With humping, they will try to get your attention to start playing with them. This is especially true with puppies. Puppies will demand constant attention; if they don't get some, they could begin to hump and mount.

5. Excitement

If you own an energetic dog breed, he could start humping and mounting because of excitement. Active dogs could get overly excited when you let them play or do anything else they love to do, and while expressing their excitement, they will start humping.

This is normal behavior for these dogs; you don't have to worry.

6. Stress and anxiety

Did something change in your dog's routine? Did you move to a new place? Did you rescue a dog from a street or a shelter? Many dogs have a problem with stress and anxiety, and since they are all different, they will express their problem differently. If your dog started to hump it could indicate that he is stressed or anxious.

If this is the case with your dog, contact your vet and ask for help. You could help your dog battle stress and anxiety in many different ways. You can try and give him some calming dog treats.


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7. Medical problem

If your dog didn't have a tendency to hump and now you caught him humping, some medical problem could be a reason. Dogs with dry and itchy skin will rub and hump different objects to relieve themselves. Also, humping could indicate that your dog has bladder problems, but this is rare.

Either way, if you catch your dog humping and mounting and you can't think of a good reason why he does it, some medical problem could be a reason, and you should contact your vet and arrange the appointment.

Why do puppies hump?

Puppies can also exhibit humping, and the reason for that behavior can be the same as for adult dogs. However, in most cases, if you catch your puppy starting to hump, there are two main reasons – playing and attention seeking.

Puppies are curious creatures and will try to interact with you as much as possible. If your puppy suddenly starts to hump, he may be seeking attention from you to start playing with him. This is not dangerous behavior, and there are no reasons why you should stop it. All it takes for this behavior to stop is for you to play with your puppy and provide him with enough daily physical and mental activities.

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How to stop dog humping?

If your dog starts humping, you first need to rule out medical problems, stress, and anxiety. If this is a case of humping, your vet could help you and your dog, and after the treatment, your dog will no longer show this behavior.


If these are the reasons for your dog humping, you will have to fix this dog behavior. Providing your dog with proper and correct training can help you with these problems. You can consider signing your dog to the training class.

If your dog is well trained but still shows this behavior, your next step is redirecting. Every time your dog starts to hump, you must shift their attention and award your dog for good behavior. By doing this, your dog will learn that humping is bad and will not be rewarded if he does it.

When to ask for help?

If you tried everything mentioned, and your dog still shows this behavior, maybe it is time to ask for professional help. Besides your vet, getting a good dog trainer can help you greatly. They have much more experience and will know how to properly work with your dog. By doing this, you can be sure that your dog will stop humping and mounting.


Dog humping is considered normal dog behavior; for the most part, if your dog does it rarely, you have nothing to worry about. However, if you catch your dog humping more often, first, you will have to rule out the medical problem and then focus on fixing this behavior. If you don't know how to do it, it is always a good idea to hire a professional that will guide you all the way.

Dogs will hump you primarily because of excitement, which is not connected to a specific body part such as an arm. When they see their favorite person, they can start humping your arm.

Dogs will hump you primarily because of excitement, which is not connected to a specific body part such as a leg. When they see their favorite person, they could start humping your leg since it is the closest to the dog.

Dogs tend to hump people primarily because of the excitement. They are excited that they see their favorite person, and they will hump them. Also, if a dog humps a person, it could indicate stress or anxiety toward that person.

Dogs could also hump kids, and the reason for that will mostly be because they want to play. However, this could be a problem, especially if you own a large dog, because it could unintentionally hurt the kid.

If you punished your dog in the past for humping people, objects, or other things, he might be unsure if he can hump, so the dog could start humping the air next to the person or other animal he wants to hump.

If your dog starts humping the cat, it will be invitation to play. Animals tend to hump to show other animals they are ready to play.

If you catch your dog humping the pillow, it could signify anxiety. However, some dogs will hump the pillow out of our fun and try to entertain themselves.

World Dog Finder team

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