Let your dog be a dog.

Best friends, Harlee & Mabel
Best friends, Harlee & Mabel

People that follow our dogs on Instagram will know Harlee and Mabel, pictured above. This moment was at the start of this summer. Harlee and Mabel are best friends and love play fighting together.

I remember the moment well, it was the most gentle play fight I’ve ever witnessed. I also remember it because that I couldn’t post it on Instagram in fear people would think the wrong thing. Just by looking I can see how people would automatically think that Harlee and Mabel were being aggressive and out of control. People, this is beautiful dog behaviour.

How wrong a picture can seem to be. If you still find the above image disturbing, I advise you to stop humanising your thoughts on dogs.

Dogs play fight with compassion and respect for each other. They show their full teeth and put their heads and necks in each other’s mouth unconditionally. One needs to understand dog natural behaviour. Natural dog behaviour is a requirement for owning a dog from the RSPCA website.

It is important to allow the dogs to express their natural behaviour so they have the respect of each other and encourages well-balanced behaviour.

A BRIGHTON DOG ADVENTURES NOTE: Play fighting should always be in a private place where no other dogs are about. Play fighting between dogs is a natural behaviour but should never be encouraged by humans. We always limit play fighting to less than a minute in any situation – sometimes not at all with some dogs that can be too rough with each other.

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