Main Reasons Why Do Female Dogs Hump

Main Reasons Why Do Female Dogs Hump

Author WDF Staff


Dogs can sometimes be weird, and their behavior can be baffling to their owners. One of these odd behaviors is humping, especially when a female dog does it. You would be surprised how often that happens, and rightfully, many dog owners ask themselves, “Why do female dogs hump?” Here is what you should know about this behavior.

Reasons female dogs hump

If you encountered this type of behavior, you might have wondered why female dogs hump things or other dogs. There are many reasons female dogs can do that, and we bring you some of the main reasons female dogs hump.

Reaction to stress or excitement

For some female dogs, the natural reaction to stress or excitement is to hump. If a dog gets really excited when meeting a new dog or a person, her natural response might be to hump them or something close to her. In this case, it is an outlet that helps her deal with the situation.

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Sexual behavior

Even with female dogs, humping can be a type of sexual behavior. You can recognize it because it is usually accompanied by “flirtatious” behavior such as a raised tail, play bows, and pawing. Humping can be considered as part of regular play, but some dogs get a little too excited and aroused.

Dominant behavior

Both sexes can hump other dogs as a way of establishing dominance. According to Peter Borchelt, Ph.D., a certified applied animal behaviorist from Brooklyn, female dog humping can be attributed to prenatal masculinization. According to PetMD, “prenatal masculinization occurs in mammals that give birth to multiple offspring where the males outnumber the females in the litter and a hormonal transfer occurs during prenatal development.”


Dogs can develop behavioral issues if their needs are not met. Female dog humping can be a way your dog is letting you know she needs attention. This happens if your dog is not satisfied with something. Perhaps you are not giving her enough activity or training.


Compulsive behavior

Female dogs can start humping things because they are reacting to stressful situations, and humping became compulsive. If your dog cannot process a new situation or something is lacking with her socialization, humping might be how she tries to deal with this issue.

Medical issues

Some medical issues can cause your female dog to hump. If you ruled out all of these previous reasons, a trip to your vet could help you determine if this might be the cause of humping. Things like skin issues, urinary tract infections, priapism, and incontinence might be the reason, and the good news is, they can be resolved.

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What to do about female dog humping?

While humping is considered a normal part of canine behavior, it can be embarrassing, especially if it happens in the wrong place. Some owners don’t like their dogs behaving like that, so they will do anything to prevent them from acting this way. Here are a few things you can do to stop your female dog from humping;

1. Ignore the dog

If your dog is humping for your attention, you have to let her know it will not work. Your dog’s goal is to achieve interaction with you, and if you simply ignore her, the behavior will eventually stop.

2. Leave it! command

One effective way to get your female dog to stop humping things and other dogs is to teach her the command “Leave it!” If your dog listens to you, she will stop the behavior that you are not happy with. Plus, if you include dog treats as a reward, you will speed up the process and help put an end to humping.

3. Shift attention

If you are battling with your dog’s humping behavior, you have to keep an eye on her and learn the signs she is exhibiting before humping. When you learn those signals, you can react and shift her attention to something else. An effective way to do that is to ask your dog to perform basic tricks like sit, lie down, or shake. Make sure to reward her with a treat.

4. Spaying

In some cases, spaying a dog helped with putting an end to the behavior. Spaying should lower her humping desire, especially if you notice it happening when your dog is in heat or in the company of other female dogs. Talk to your vet and ask for their opinion and advice. If you want to know more about spaying, check out this article - Should I spay my dog?

World Dog Finder team

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