Why Won’t Your Dogs Play With Each Other? [Reasons + Tips]

two dogs stay close

Are you a dog parent of more than one dog? Then most probably, most of you might be wondering why your dogs won’t play with each other, is it? This might make you worried and confused often. 

Before digging into the deep waters, let me figure it out for you briefly.

Two dogs may not play with each other due to a lack of socialization, shyness, gender struggles, age differences, size differences, and temperament differences. Giving them sufficient space, positive reinforcement, taking them for long walks together, and consulting a dog behaviorist are solutions.

Knowing the reasons why your dogs don’t get along and knowing how to make them get along is extremely vital.

Why won’t your dogs play with each other?

Now, let’s dive into the deep waters.

1. Lack of socialization.

Dogs are said to be extremely socialized animals with joy in their hearts. Now, what do I mean by lack of socialization? Even though dogs are socialized animals, they are not all the same. 

If your canine friend has not been exposed to other dogs since you adopted one and was always with you, it might be hard for him to adjust with another dog which leads to “NOT” to play with the other canines or each other.

2. Shyness.

Just like humans, doggy’s might be pretty shy too. The dog may not have been with you since its birth. So if you have adopted one, it may also have a past.

If the past experiences are pretty bad, as in if they have been abused or maltreated in any way, that might tend the poor little ones to not to get along with each other. 

3.“Not my type”

Do you often get to see each of your dogs growling at each other and don’t even try to play? Then it might not be its type.

What I mean by this is that different dogs have varied ways of playing, their own unique ways. The “playing style” might be the reason for them not to get along with each other.

4. Gender struggles.

Now, this might be a real problem too. Are both your dogs female? Then this might be the place where the problem lies.

According to research, it has been found that female-female dogs have a low tendency to get along with each other.

So, maybe that’s why you see your doggy’s growling at each other instead of playing “WITH” each other!

5. “Damn, kid, I can’t play with you!”

So here go the AGE issues! If you have dogs with a huge age gap, as an example, one is like 2 years old, and the other is like 6 years old, they might really not get along with each other.

If one is even older than that, it might even have health issues like arthritis, Joint Problems, Dementia, Cancer, Heart Problems, and so on, which may lead to lethargy and prevent the oldie from playing with the other doggy’s.

Suggested Reading: Can puppies play tug of war with old dogs?

6. Imperfect perfect figure.

Yes, it’s about the size! One little doggy and a huge doggy put together, how hard would it be for them? The poor little one might accidentally be swiped away by the huge pooch! Another reason is they might not like to play with each other!

Now, the above are a few reasons why your dogs might not play with each other.

How do you make your dog to play with each other?

Now above all, let’s check up on how to make them bond! Let’s start from the beginning!

1. Give them their space.

Many people might think that just putting the dogs together at once will help them bond easily. But this might not really work sometimes.

If you try to give the same stuff to both of your doggy’s, you will make it complicated. They will feel like the other dog is a threat to their lifestyle. So giving their personal space is vital.

Let them see each other, but without any external force! Maybe a “baby gate” will help you in this case.

Then within a period of time, they might get along and play with each other to their preference. That’s what we want, don’t we?

2. Train them through “Positive reinforcement”.

Begin to train them from the start! After allowing each other to have private time, let some training begin!

Keep your doggy companions at one place and let them have a friendly glance with each other, and let them sniff each other.

Then maybe start saying, “you’ll get some treats if you play this game with me,” and then proceed with the “playtime”.

As a start off, you can just tell the doggy’s to fetch something or just sit by. Then they might get along with each other without any force.

3. Long walks.

Take your companions for a walk held by either side. Let your love be doubled for both, as in showing the same affection towards each other.

On the way to this long walk, they might try to get to know each other, which in turn will help them to play together in no time.

Suggested Reading: Can Basset hounds go on long walks?

4. Consult a dog behaviorist.

If you feel like none of your attempts work, the other best option is to consult a dog behaviorist and do accordingly. It will be a great way to get out of your trouble bubble.

With these remedies, hope you’ll minimize your trouble bubble!

How do you know if your dogs get along?

It’s pretty hard to know whether the dogs get along with each other, isn’t it? Let me help you to figure it out.

1. “Let’s sleep bruh!”.

If your blossom buddies get along together, they will snuggle and sleep with each other. These little fur creatures love a buddy hug too!

So if they really, really get along with each other, they’ll make sure to sleep happily with each other.

2. “I won’t keep a step out without him”

If you’re about to go for a walk, try out grabbing one leash and holding on to it.

So, if any of your blossom buddies look at you in confusion, maybe this fur creature needs his other buddy too. It’s more like the attitude of, “if here’s gonna come, I’ll come; if not, we are both gonna stay.”

3. Support one another.

Instead of growling and fighting, they’ll make sure to support each other. If their bond is strong, it even has a possibility to reduce anxiety for a while. That moral support of each other is on another level!

A little bit of a hard time does reveal the stuff, won’t it?

How long does it take dogs to get used to each other?

You might really be wondering how long it takes for these dogs to get along with each other.

Even though it’s not a precise value, usually, your old buddy and the new buddy might take three to four weeks to get along with each other. 

As I mentioned before, make sure you don’t force them in any way. If you do, it might get “topsy-turvy”.

There are also instances where the dogs won’t never, ever get along with each other, as they require the same energy and personality to get along.

Not to disappoint you, but it’s just who they are! But the happy news is, you can try out a few methods which were mentioned previously, who knows, it might work out!

Things to be aware of.

Now, let’s consider a few vital facts to be aware of.

1. Obedience training.

If you have trained the dogs from the day you adopted with the basics, it would be much more straightforward for you to get the dogs to get along with each other.

2. Growling and squalling.

If you are going to put the new buddy and old buddy together, make sure you have the time to intervene. Yes, dogs do growl at each other but to a certain limit.

If that limit exceeds, you’ll surely have to pour in your head. These instances can be,

  1. Your little doggy is squealing when each other play and the other one doesn’t stop playing.
  2. When expressions involving aggressions are present.

2. Giving a preference for a short time.

Just show that you care for the old one more than the new little fur creature just for a time period until both adjust. The jealousy of the old one might get reduced from this.

The above are a few things you should be really concerned about.


After all, I hope I guided you with all you wanted, especially hope I answered your question on “why won’t your dogs play with each other”! So, briefly, if your dogs get along with each other, they’ll definitely play with each other, cuddle each other, sleep together, go for long leash walks together, and so on.

On your side, during the time they try to adjust with each other, make sure you give attention to them. These fur creatures are like toddlers! They need love, care, and your time as well.

Stay connected with us to know more amazing stuff about your blossom buddy!

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