My dogs, a lab/GWP cross bitch and a castrated teckel are normally perfectly happy with each other. The bitch I've had from a pup and is 2 in March, the teckel came to us earlier this year but is older, almost 4. They interact well normally, although the teckel is often quite aloof and won't always play with the bitch nomatter how playful she tries to be. This will sometimes end in a quick snap from the teckel if he really isn't interested. He will often take a toy off the younger one and she usually just gives it up or might play keep away with him. Again, he occasionally snaps or grumbles at her and she usually will give up what she has. This doesn't extend to food, she will growl if he comes near while she's eating, but he rarely does and always gets the hint.
Twice in the last couple of weeks they've come to blows. The first time I wasn't there to see what it was about. I pulled them apart and the wife and I took them to separate rooms for five minutes. They were cautious with one another for a while but within 24 hours were back to snuggling together on the sofa and following each other around as they normally do.
Then tonight the bitch had a new toy she was playing with. Trigger (the teckel) went to investigate, and she turned away from him and ran off. He lost interest for a while, but then approached her again.
And all hell broke loose!
She had him by the scruff and he was yelping like a pro but she didn't let go. I ended up taking her by the scruff and prizing them apart for fear that she'd end up injuring him (being over twice his weight).
I took her one way and he ran off by himself to hide in the corner. A hard stare from me soon had her looking submissive to me. I left her in the kitchen and checked the teckel who was still in the corner and bleeding terribly from what turned out to be a pretty minor cut on his ear.
Poppy tried to approach him very sheepishly but he grumbled at her and she kept her distance. Both dogs are now asleep, one with me and one with the wife at the opposite end of the sofa.
Should I be concerned about this, or is it just a reshuffle of the hierarchy which will settle? The dogs have previously been fine together as I say, and can regularly be seen licking each other and sleeping curled up together.
Neither dog is aggressive towards other dogs or to people and both are generally very good natured and tolerant. The bitch is normally quite submissive to strange dogs and Trigger mostly ignores them.