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Whenever I see a person come to a forum wanting another German Shepherd and they have a female, they always say they want a male. They say they don't want two females because of fighting. So my question is if a person owns two females is there more of a chance of them fighting than two males? Or is it other factors other than the gender that really creates the fighting?
 

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There are always exceptions, but in general a female/female pairing is more likely to fight than either two (neutered) males or a male and a female. I'm not experienced with non-neutered males so that's why I didn't address those.
 

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Bitches are nasty,lol I've had two neutered males and 2 un-neutered males without issue, but two females...not a great idea honestly. My girl can not play with her mom anymore- they fight though she is still good with one of her sisters. She fights with the other sister and strangely has never had an issue with a strange female dog out and about, but then again they weren't in our house:)
 

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I got a female after my male to help ensure there would be no fighting. My parents have 2 females (boykin spaniels though), and they live mostly peacefully, but I think thats because the younger is very much submissive to the elder... they do occasionally get into it.
 

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I think IN GENERAL having a male/female (or female/male) helps make sure the dogs get along. Specially cause alot of newbies are clueless about making sure they get dogs from responsible breeders who raise dogs with a solid temperment AND/OR clueless about the training and socialization we need to do to help make our dogs good when with others.

That said, I've only owned female dogs, as many as 3 at a time and NEVER had issues with them among themselves..... To help, I only get one at a time, train and socialize to really 'know' how they are with other dogs (about 4 to 5 yrs of that) before carefully working with a breeder to add the next!
 

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Lol I don't know. I've just always been told to keep male and female. I've never tried two of the same sex either male or female so I don't really know.
 

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What has been posted reflects my thoughts, and adding a male to my home was the plan.....but selecting a puppy is an entirely different thread....anyway, against my plan, I have brought home a second bitch.

To me, the issue is in regards to risk. Risk of incompatibility and fighting....and that assumes the circumstance poses a problem for your lifestyle. If you kennel because you're a trainer or breeder that employs that method, then this is much less an issue, but if you're like me and you have two bitches, and ah a wife in your bed at night....everyone has to get along!!!! Every so often my four year old daughter works her way into the mix, so bitch fights would be a real problem for how I elect to live with my dog!!! Worthy to note I am a SchH trainer/helper, so these are a bit more than just companion dogs as well.



So here I am dispelling my own concerns on this very topic as I live with my 3 year old spay female, and her 16 week old "little sister" as we call her (that we plan to keep intact).

There were some resource guarding and tolerance issues initially with the older dog toward the pup, but we worked through that with some focused training on sharing the water bowl, and just being together. If the older dog reacted poorly, I would scold, if she was tolerant, I would jackpot with praise and treats. Spent hours with this type of interaction, and what I can tell you after two months...they LOVE each other and my fears are gone. I anticipate some jockeying for position as the pup matures, but we'll cross that bridge when we come to it.

I would expect the risk of incompatibility is significantly greater when introducing older dogs, say if you foster or rescue. Here the issues may have to be address with significantly more behavioral work that others may be more qualified to comment on......

Interesting to note, the reason I have a show line, is that I was concerned about having a working line dog around my children. My pup is a working line to the exponential level and she is fabulous with the kids....another myth/"old wives tale" shattered.

Best of luck.
 

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Two neutered males will usually get along, although might be a scuffle now and then. An intact male and a neutered male will also usually get along, the intact male is usually the "man" and will let the other one know that maybe a short scuffle.
Female and males, whether intact or not almost always get along fine. Even an intact male and a female in heat will get along most the time, especially if the female lets the male know in no uncertain terms that SHE is the boss at all times, even when in heat(although I don't suggest keeping them together when in heat :) ) most males unless completely dense, will get the hint and show all respect to the female.
Female and female can get along, but not very often with complete certainly. A female/female fight is usually nasty, long and causes lots of damage. They just don't want to give up alpha and will fight and fight and fight over and over.
Of course there are acceptions to every home and pack.
 

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Some breeds are much more prone to same sex aggression and GSDs are one of those breeds. While it is more common for two bitches to fight, same sex aggression can be a very real problem with males too. Having same sex dogs who are close in age increases the risk that you'll have issues.
 

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Is this true? females fighting

I have had a multiple dog household since 1994 and have only had one male at a time, however, I have had as many as eight females and the one male at a time. Every single one of my fights in the past 16 years has been two females and they are vicious. My breed for AKC conformation and obedience showing has been a medium-sized sporting group spaniel breed and I have had a spayed female Standard Poodle and a spayed rescued female Rottweiler with the spaniels. My Rottweiler never started a fight, but if one started, she always wanted to join in. First priority was always to get her separated and fast. I have had females that can get along beautifully for years and then, all of a sudden, they can no longer be in the same room.

I now have a neutered rescued GSD adult male in a pack with five of the spaniels (one neutered male, three spayed females and one intact female) and one rescued neutered mutt. The two males are recent neuters and both are tolerant of eachother, but not warm and fuzzy about the other's presence. However, they can hang out together and be in the same room or yard together. I am hoping that the decreasing testosterone levels will help as time goes by. Two of my females (one spayed and one intact) can not be near one another wihtout a fight.

I am a pretty skilled dog owner and still have to be vigilant to body language and stay on top of the dog to dog relationships within my pack. I use crates and babygates to rotate my pack in groups that get along as well as doing training individually. For a novice dog owner friends, I will always recommend opposite sex groups as I have lived with a multiple female household for many years. I do find, however, that my females have "generally" gotten along better once they were spayed.

Shannon
 

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Males fight for breeding rights, females fight for breathing rights. My females generally do not get along and the queen of mean has never welcomed another bitch in the household. It can complicate management.
 

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Ditto what MaggieRoseLee said.

I've always had mulitple females and never had an issue but I'm very careful in my puppy selection, do proper training, and keep an age difference.
 

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There are SO many variables. I have had littermates raised together that have been pretty good together, and littermates raised together that are not good together. All other things being equal.

But it depends on leadership, and I am not into all that NILIF stuff or alpha dog stuff, so I am a poor example in some ways.

If you have two bitches, and are careful about selection and have enough space in between them, and get the younger as a puppy, you may be fine. But if one of them has the green monster gene you are just out of luck. There is going to be a fight, and it will be nasty.

Boys fight, especially intact males, but usually one comes out on top and that is the end to it. They do not usually KILL each other. People have even suggested letting them go on with it, so that pecking order will be established. I cannot do that. And NEVER do that with bitches. The results might very well be one dead bitch and another that needed to be put down.

It is ALWAYS a risk whe you add a dog into a family with another dog. My opinion would always be for an eight week old puppy of the opposite sex, after the first dog is a minimum of two years, better four years old. But I certainly do not live by that rule.

Choosing to have two females, means having to have a plan in case animosity happens. Hopefully, that plan is not euthanize or rehome one of the bitches. This is a problem that should have been considered when the decision to bring in another dog was made. If you have multiple females, you have to be prepared to keep them separated for their own good. And keeping them separated as regular thing when eating, training, and when you are not home or able to supervise as a preventive measure just makes sense.

If you are not willing or able to play musical crates or kennels, then do not own multiple females. Or do it with years in between and a good emphasis on exercise and training and leadership, do not put up with a single wordy derd between them. It is certainly not for just anyone to manage.

Anyone wanting to be a breeder really has to be able to keep dogs separated, and not only just because male and female may produce a litter, but because a female in whelping and raising her litter needs to have a stress-free/reduced stress atmosphere, she may kill her puppies if she feels threatened, and it is not a good atmosphere for pups to be raised in to have a female constantly worried or flying at other dogs in the home.

And then, there is always the possibility that someone who has purchase a pup from you, down the line needs to return it. You have to be able to keep balance in your home. If you inject an older puppy bitch or adult bitch into a home with multiple bitches, chances are there will be repercussions. So you have to be prepared to keep everyone separated and safe. And that way, you should never need to put down a bitch for dog aggression.

Lastly, I have found that bitches who act like they want to KILL their pack members, do not have that problem out and about with outside dogs or bitches. It is totally a pack thing. The best way I can describe it is if a young newly wed man told his young wife that his recent previous girlfriend or x-wife is going to come and live with them for an extended period of time. It just sounds ugly doesn't it.
 

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Agree with everyone else. The predisposition to fight is sort of genetic and is recognized to not be uncommon in the German Shepherd breed. The personality of the dogs and the leadership is important. Careful selection of temperament and a clear understanding of dog temperament can keep you from having serious problems...but the problem tends to be that when you get a puppy...you really don't know what you have until it grows up.

In our multiple dog household we have 1 female and 4 males-all intact. Female gets along with everyone and they take ALL kinds of crap from her. The boys are more intolerant of each other. Most of them do get along. Ike is the exception since he was brought in as an adult he doesn't have much tolerance for the older boys. However, I would never leave them unattended together (which how most people with pets do leave their dogs...). They will squabble- and it usually doesn't happen until a younger one reaches an age where they feel like challenging. So 2 dogs that have been together since the youngest was 8 weeks and gotten along for almost 2 years suddenly bump into each other and it's on. Like others have said...it's never really serious but it's sure sounds/looks pretty ugly and it's certainly not something I would let go on.

So if you get 2 same sex dogs...you need to know that it's certainly possible that you could have a problem and might need to separate.
 

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I have two females. One is my dog, Dharma and then I brought my foster Tessa home about 2 months ago. At first there were issues as Tessa wanted to establish herself as the alpha and Dharma really did not have a clue how to defend herself and would cower. After a few weeks thought they were best buddies. And now they adore each other, for the most part. I have had some issues with Tessa resource guarding, mostly me. She would jump Dharma if Dharma came up for attention while she was getting loved on. We have worked hard on that and have not really had an issue (knock on wood) in a few weeks though.

The only time a I have a problem now is when they are playing and Dharma inadvertently gets to rough and hurts Tessa (Tessa is old and has pretty severe arthritis and dysplasia). Tessa will jump Dharma then. Only now Dharma doesn't just take it anymore, she has learned to fight back and will get Tessa pinned pretty quick. Usually before I can get to them and break it up. And last Sunday morning in the melee my jewelry armoire was knocked over and the leg broken. Plus I had the added bonus of picking up a hundred or so pairs of earrings out of the carpet.:mad: But even that doesn't happen very often, Dharma seems to try to be more careful of Tessa now. They tend to lay on the floor and mouth each other more than anything else.

Other than that, they really are best buddies. Tessa even gets upset if another dog messes with Dharma at the dog park. A few weeks ago when we were there another dog chased after Dharma and nipped her, she yelped, stuck her tail between her legs and ran over towards me. He decided to follow her. When he got close and barked at her (not in a very friendly way) Tessa got up and cut him off and gave him a big talking too. Dharma came over and laid down next to me and anytime he tried to come close Tessa stopped him before he could get anywhere near her. She has become quite protective of her little sister. :D
 

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Discussion Starter #19
All right, so it's more common depending on the breed and two females is generally not a good idea huh. Okay, I will definitely remember this for if one day I decide to own two German Shepherds or just two dogs in general.
 
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