How to Stop a Dog from Humping and Mounting


*Discloser: This post may contain affiliate links, meaning, I get a commission if you decide to make a purchase through one of my links, at no cost to you.

how to stop a dog from humping and mounting

There are few things more frustrating, or occasionally embarrassing, when it comes to having a dog than humping.

Maybe you like having company over, but every time you do your dog starts humping furniture. Or worse—he starts humping your guest’s legs.

Or your pup seems to be desperately in love with about every dog at the dog park and mounts male and females equally.

Humping and mounting is frustrating behavior, so how do you stop it?

As usual, the trick to getting a behavior to stop is to figure out why it’s happening in the first place. So what are some of the reasons why your dog is humping?

In short, here’s why dogs hump and what you can do about it: Humping is most often a sign of stress or overexcitement. If your dog is humping you, turn away from him and take a position in which he can’t hump you anymore. Then, reward the good behavior or put him in another room for a short time out, if he doesn’t react to the rewards.

Okay, now let’s take a closer look.

Why Do Dogs Hump?

Whenever you try to change a particular behavior that your dog shows, it’s always important to first understand it’s reason. And often there’s more than one.

So, when it comes to humping and mounting, there are 7 possible reasons.

Stress

It might seem unusual, but many dogs hump because they’re stressed. In fact, stress or overexcitement are actually some of the most common reasons why dogs do hump. Humping usually doesn’t come from a dog’s sexual drive.

Humping can be a way for your dog to try and release some of the stress he’s been bottling up.

If your dog is humping out of stress, you’ll have to find ways to minimize the stressors in his life. More on that later.

Share it with your friends!

Overstimulation

Just like dogs will sometimes hump to release feelings of stress, if your dog is feeling overstimulated, he might start humping to deal with these feelings.

If your dog starts humping when you go to a dog park, or when you have company over, it could very well be because he’s feeling overstimulated. For him, humping is a way to release all this pent-up energy.

In case you struggle to understand your dog’s weird and annoying behaviors, make sure to get our free beginner’s dog training guide. This guide teaches you the various reasons for the 5 most common behavioral issues in dogs and how to easily solve them.

Dominance

It’s possible that your dog is humping as an act of dominance.

However, as Pet WebMD explains, not all dogs who hump are dominant dogs. Sometimes, a dog will hump another dog as a kind of experiment. In this case, the dog is trying to find its place in the social hierarchy by humping other dogs, and seeing who will accept it.

Unfortunately, this behavior can lead to dog fights, as not all dogs will appreciate this experiment.

Pleasure or Sexual Drive

This is most common among unneutered or unspayed dogs (yes, female dogs will hump too!).

If your dog is still a puppy and is humping, then he might be practicing for when the time comes to mate. In case your dog is neutered or spayed and humping, then he could be trying to recreate the feelings that came when he was still intact.

If your dog is humping out of a sexual drive, this is normal, especially if he’s still young.

Over time, as you correct the behavior and get him fixed, this behavior should stop and isn’t anything to worry about.

Habit

While humping in puppyhood is completely normal, sometimes this act can turn into a bad habit.  If you don’t correct the habit early on, your dog will bring the behavior with them into adulthood. This is when humping starts to cause problems.

It’s a lot like humans biting their nails. It’s a bad habit that, if you don’t correct it early enough, can last a long time.

If an adult dog is humping a lot, it has likely become a habit
If an adult dog is humping a lot, it has likely become a habit

Compulsive Disorder

But when does a habit turn into something more?

If your dog is humping excessively, then that could be a sign that there’s something wrong. Compulsive disorders like canine OCD can be difficult to deal with and manage.

Luckily, a good vet, and potentially a dog behavioralist, will be able to set you and your dog on the right path.

If you think your dog is humping excessively, it’s time for a trip to the vet. They’ll be able to diagnose any compulsive disorders your dog might have, and set you up with medication or a training plan.

Speaking of vet: have you ever thought about getting pet insurance for your dog? No? Then check out my article on the question “is it worth getting pet insurance for dogs?“. Or go straight to PetAssure for a cheap alternative to get 25% off each vet visit!

Medical Issues

If your dog is excessively humping, especially if this behavior comes on suddenly, then it might be a sign of a medical issue.

For example, urinary tract infections or UTIs are painful and uncomfortable. Your dog might start humping to try and relieve some of the discomfort. UTIs can also be a sign that something more is wrong.

If your dog is humping excessively, then take him to your vet right away to rule out any medical problems. If your dog does get a diagnosis, your vet will be able to get him medication and a treatment plan.

Share it with your friends!

How to Stop a Dog from Humping and Mounting—General Tips

Okay, with the theory out of the way, let’s look at the next step: how to stop a dog from humping and mouting.

In this section we’ll discuss some general tips. After that we’ll also go over some particular situations to show you specific solutions.

Find Out What Causes the Humping or Mounting

Since different reasons for humping will require different ways to stop the behavior, the first step is figuring out why your dog is humping.

Once you’ve determined the cause, you can work on the root of the problem. This will be the most effective way to get your dog to stop humping and mounting.

Neutering or Spaying Can Help

If your dog is humping out of a sexual drive, then getting him neutered or spayed should help. While it might not necessarily eliminate the humping problem, it will likely lessen the urge, at least a little bit.

If your dog is fixed and still humping, then that’s just because the humping has turned into a habit or he’s trying to reduce stress. We’ll discuss ways to help with this later.

Rule Out Medical Problems

If your dog is humping a lot, bring him to your vet.

They’ll check him out for any medical issues like UTIs, and they’ll watch out for any indicators of compulsive disorders. If it turns out that your dog does have a medical issue, then you can get treatment for it right away.

If there’s no medical problem causing the humping and mounting, then that means you can focus on the problem as a behavioral one. Plus, you’ll have the relief of knowing that your dog isn’t sick.

Reduce Stress or Stimulation

If your dog is humping as a reaction to stress or overstimulation, then removing the stimuli will help. This isn’t usually a long-term solution though, since not all stimuli can be completely removed forever.

Instead, use it as step one to desensitizing your dog to the stimuli making him hump.

Once you’ve removed the stressors, you can start slowly reintroducing them to your dog. With time and patience, you can teach your dog by counter-conditioning him to react positively to these stressors and stimuli.

If your dog is humping and mounting a lot, make sure to reduce stress and stimulation
If your dog is humping and mounting a lot, make sure to reduce stress and stimulation

Catch Your Dog in the Act

If you want to train your dog to stop humping and mounting, you’re going to have to catch him doing it. If you try to train your dog out of this behavior when your dog isn’t doing it, he’s not going to know what’s going on!

If you see your dog humping or mounting, then correct him right away.

Redirect His Attention

Once you’ve caught him in the act, you can get his attention focused on something else.

Do this by grabbing your dog’s favorite toy. Or you can follow professional dog trainer Victoria Stilwell’s example and toss some food or treats around the house for your dog to “go find.”

This is an especially good way to train your dog out of humping if the behavior is stress-based.

As Victoria Stilwell explains in her article, giving him another task like searching for treats around the room or house releases dopamine in your dog’s brain. It also removes the stress response your dog is experiencing.

This can actually be done with any kind of mental (or physical) stimulation. In case you need some inspiration, check out these articles:

If you want to take it one step further and actually train your dog through mental stimulation, I highly recommend getting Braintraining4dogs.

At $47 this in an incredible bargain for the amount of information you get. This course will help you train your dog from A to Z, so there’s no need to spend any more money on dog trainers or dog schools. And the best thing: you even get a 60-day money back guarantee, so there’s no risk involved!

Make sure to check out Dogpackr’s review to see if this is something for you.

Field Dogs 300 x 600

Reward the Good Behavior

As always with positive reinforcement training, you want to make sure that you reward your dog’s good behavior.

A huge part of positive reinforcement training is training your dog to make his own choices, and to make the right ones.

So if your dog starts humping your leg, turn around and walk away. Ignore your dog until he stops trying to mount you. And then once he’s stopping trying to hump you, reward him with a treat if he’s food-motivated, or a toy. Whatever is more your dog’s speed!

With consistency and patience, your dog will eventually learn the behavior you prefer. He’ll learn that the desired behavior gets him treats and affection, while humping gets him ignored.

Another way to get about it is to actually ask for a different behavior until your dog has learned what you actually want him to do:

If He Doesn’t React to the Reward, Give Him a Time Out

If your dog is struggling to follow through when rewarded for good behavior and continues to try and mount you, it’s time to give him a time out. You can use your dog’s crate for this.

But wait—shouldn’t your dog’s crate be a positive space for him? Why would you give him a time out in there?

Your dog’s crate does need to be a positive space, but it’s also a really good training tool. You don’t need to put your dog in his crate for long. 30 seconds to a couple of minutes should do it.

The important thing is that you do this in a completely neutral way. When he’s humping you, you just bring him to his crate without saying a word. Put him in there and walk away.

Time outs in his crate are only for your dog to calm down again.

If you don’t have a crate, yet, here are some articles that will help you get started:

If that doesn’t work then better use a small room for his time outs. Bathrooms work well. This isn’t place where he’s used to being in with a closed door. So, the time out should help him understand that his behavior results in his freedom being taken away for a short period.

How to Stop Your Dog from Humping and Mounting—Specific Situations

Now let’s look at a few common situations where dogs are humping or mounting. Depending on the situation, the solutions differ from one another.

Dogs like to hump different subjects: humans, objects and of course, other dogs
Dogs like to hump different subjects: humans, objects and of course, other dogs

Dog Humping Human

A dog humping a human is the classic, and most embarrassing, situation. All the tips listed above work well to deal with this behavior. Here’s another way:

If your dog is humping you, or worse—humping your guests, that can be incredibly frustrating and embarrassing behavior. To stop him, the ASPCA recommends pushing him off of you (gently), turning around and walking away, or positioning yourself so he can’t mount you.

If your dog stops, wait a few seconds and reward him for doing something else. Make sure you wait a few seconds at least, so that your dog doesn’t think he’s being rewarded for humping. If he doesn’t respond to this and continues trying to hump, then he can go into his crate or a quiet room for a time out.

Dog Humping Dog

This is a situation where you’ll want to make sure your dog knows the command “leave it.” The best way to teach your dog “leave it” is to take 2 treats, one or lower value in one hand, and one of higher value in the other. Have your dog sniff your fist with the low value treat, and say “leave it.” Once your dog finishes sniffing the treat, tell him “yes” or “good” and reward him with the high value treat.

Keep repeating this process until your dog stops sniffing as soon as you tell him “leave it.” You can then graduate to opening your hand with the treat and, eventually, tossing the treat onto the floor.

Here’s another way to teach it:

Once your dog has a good grasp of the command “leave it,” you can start using it when he tries humping other dogs.

As soon as you see him getting ready to mount another dog, tell him “leave it.” If he listens, reward him! If he doesn’t, then he just needs more practice with “leave it” around other dogs.

Dog Humping Object

You can use the “leave it” command in this situation too.

Another way to help is removing the object he wants to hump. Often, when dogs want to hump objects, it has to do with overexcitement. So another way to get your dog to stop humping objects is with classic counter-conditioning and desensitization to the stimuli that are exciting him too much.

Or simply provide some other way for him to get rid of his excitement. What works best is to give him a chewy or a stuffed Kong toy as chewing and licking has a relaxing effect.

Share it with your friends!

Conclusion

Humping and mounting can be incredibly frustrating behavior. This is especially true if your dog tries to hump your visitors when you have company over!

But once you’ve figured out why he’s humping, you can start taking the steps to stop him. If your dog is humping excessively, take him to your vet. Your vet will check him out for medical problems like UTIs, or behavioral issues like compulsive disorders.

Once you’ve been able to rule those out, you can determine whether he’s humping out of a sexual drive, or just because he’s stressed or overstimulated.

And as soon as you’ve figured out where the behavior is coming from, you can more effectively train him to stop.

That’s when you can get started with your positive reinforcement training. With patience and consistency, your dog will learn that humping isn’t acceptable behavior, and you can stop feeling too embarrassed to go to the dog park or have guests over.

P.s.: Don’t forget to check out Braintraining4dogs if you want to take your dog training game to the next level. It offers a 60-day money back guarantee, so you have nothing to lose.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recent Content