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How to Calm a Sexually Excited Dog: 11 Vet Approved Methods

Written by: Ashley Bates

Last Updated on April 9, 2024 by Dogster Team

Female Dogs Hump

How to Calm a Sexually Excited Dog: 11 Vet Approved Methods


Dr. Lauren Demos  Photo


Dr. Lauren Demos

DVM (Veterinarian)

The information is current and up-to-date in accordance with the latest veterinarian research.

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Dogs are not-so-modest about some of the things they do. So if they have taken a shine to a couch pillow or one of your child’s stuffed animals, you might want to end the behavior once and for all—but that can be challenging.

Dominating inanimate objects can be a real problem for some dogs, but it is manageable. If you have a dog with specific sexual behaviors you’d rather keep tucked out of sight, try these methods to help the issue.

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The 11 Tips to Calm a Sexually Excited Dog

1. Make a Distracting Noise

Don’t let the behavior continue. Clap your hands very loud, shout out a command—anything you can to get their attention. When you break the concentration, you should momentarily halt the behavior and then have time to push your dog’s attention toward other activities.

Try not to yell, threaten, or spank your dog. However, make it clear that the behavior is unwanted.

Dog whistle training
Image By: Jari Hindstroem, Shutterstock

2. Channel Your Dog’s Attention

Once you’ve broken their concentration, it’s time to put them on to something else. Toss them their favorite toy to chase or a bone to chew on. Whatever it takes to get their energy focused toward another self-play option.

3. Strike Up Play Time

You might need to play along if you’re having trouble distracting them. That means finding an activity the two of you can do together. Take this time to have a miniature training session or play a game of tug of war.

Rearranging your dog’s thought patterns will interrupt the current action and put their energy to good use.

dog owner playing tug of war with his pet
Image By: thka, Shutterstock

4. Ignore It Completely

Some folks let their dogs do their business and stay out of it. If that sounds like something you prefer, remove yourself from the room so that your dog has some private time.

Make sure they don’t have any bedding, items, or belongings you don’t want to be destroyed.

5. Remove Your Dog from the Area

If your dog wants to get frisky, they can do so in its own area. You can put them in their crate or kennel, let them go outside in the backyard, or separate them into another room. This way they can do what they want, and you and your family can rest distraction-free.

labrador retriever lying inside dog cage
Image By: Parilov, Shutterstock

6. Get Your Dog Spayed or Neutered

Sometimes, decreasing sex hormones can eliminate this behavior. If you have yet to get your pet spayed or neutered, it’s a really good avenue to consider. Spaying and neutering have their own series of health benefits, all of which can help your dog live a longer and healthier life.

Speak with your veterinarian about the pros and cons and schedule an appointment. Most veterinarians recommend getting your pet spayed by 6 months to 1 year old. It will be different from dog to dog.

7. Keep Up with Daily Exercise

Exercise is vital to keep your dog fit and provides an excellent way to expel extra energy. Some dogs require more exercise than others. If your dog gets sexually excited frequently, it may come from a lack of channeled energy.

Get your dog out for a few brisk walks, make sure they’re getting enough time to run around, and keep them engaged and mentally stimulated as much as possible. Proper exercise often decreases the frequency of sexual excitement.

dalmatian dog on a leash walking with the owner
Image By: absolutimages, Shutterstock

8. Give Them a Treat to Divert their Behavior

Your dog might be excited about the teddy bear in the corner until they see the mouthwatering treat in your hand. You can divert your dog’s attention away from the stimulating behavior and satisfy their taste palate instead.

It’s important to make your dog realize in these times that they are not being rewarded for their current behavior. That is why you’ll need to snap them out of their recent activity and move their focus elsewhere.

9. Speak to Your Vet

Humping and similar behaviors are pretty normal. Therefore, your dog displaying some of these behaviors isn’t anything to worry about. However, if your dog doesn’t respond to any of the tips above, it may be time to speak with your vet. Your dog will benefit from a thorough examination and assessment. They may need spayed and neutered to help prevent some of these behaviors.

However, humping can also be a sign of anxiety and stress, as some dogs may do it to relieve stress. Sometimes, these behaviors can become compulsive—another sign of anxiety. In this case, your pet will benefit from a veterinary behaviorist to tackle their issues in the best possible way.

These behaviors may also be a sign of skin allergies or UTIs. This is rarer, as humping isn’t a typical sign of any illness. However, it is possible, so it’s always best to get your dog checked out if these behaviors are out of the norm.

veterinarian listening to father and daughter concerned about health of their havanese dog
Image By: Bear Fotos, Shutterstock

10. Separate Different Genders

Male and female dogs may react when a female is in heat. Your dog will know before you do if another dog is in heat, as they can smell pheromones that humans cannot. Therefore, if your male dog is suddenly acting sexually excited, you may need to separate the males from the females. You don’t want an accidental pregnancy, and their behaviors may diminish once they are separated.

Of course, males can smell an in-heat female from a distance. Therefore, if you only separate them with a door, your male dog may continue to display sexually excited behaviors. We recommend separating the dogs by multiple rooms or a separate home temporarily if you’re able to.

11. Clean Well

If your dog is suddenly experiencing a surge in sexually stimulating behaviors, we recommend cleaning up your home well. Dogs may react to pheromones or other scents on the surfaces. You can’t smell these, so it is impossible to know if this is the case or not.

Therefore, consider deep-cleaning the areas that your dog seems to be most excited about. This can help reduce the pheromones in that area.


Why Do Dogs Get Sexually Excited?

Sexual excitement in dogs can stem from a variety of factors, but it’s usually because they aren’t being stimulated enough in their daily life. It can also spawn from sudden excitement or stress they can’t articulate.

When dogs encounter these situations, they self-soothe by masturbating or mounting objects. While it can be a little embarrassing to us, this is quite natural for them.

an excited Siberian husky dog with its tongue out
Image By: Luis Quintero, Pexels

Don’t Negatively Scold Your Dog

If your dog is performing this action a lot, you will want to make them aware that the behavior is unwanted without overdoing it. You should never punish, spank, or use negative reinforcement tactics to correct the situation.

Regardless of how annoying or embarrassing it might be to you, this is still a very natural process for your dog, and not one they should be ashamed of. It’s not so much that you should try to eliminate the behavior entirely, but there is a time and a place for everything.

If you need to excuse your dog or put them in a separate room until they can calm down, these are definitely solutions you need to implement over harsh discipline. Disciplining in this manner can lead to fearful reactions, poor behaviors, and destructiveness.

Get Your Dog a Friend

As humans, we can only fulfill so many of our dog’s mental and physical needs. Sometimes, your dog could be downright bored and unstimulated in other ways, which can lead to excessive sexual excitement.

If you only have a single dog in the home, it might be time to invite another canine in that can match their energy. The two can spend time romping around to alleviate a lot of that extra tension.

You might notice fewer of these behaviors, and you have a playmate for your dog, so you can get some work done. There are plenty of rescues, shelters, and breeders with amazing dogs of any age. Just make sure to get the dogs fixed if they’re different genders and you don’t want any unwanted puppies, or get two dogs of the same gender instead.


In Conclusion

A sexually excited dog can be a real pain sometimes. But there are reasons for everything, and your dog is simply following something instinctual. There are ways to curb the behavior, or at least put it in its proper place.

Just remember to refrain from highly harsh punishments. Reacting out of frustration can cause fearfulness in your dog, resulting in worsening issues.

Featured Image Credit: Spik and I, Shutterstock

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