I know this behavior is somewhat normal within a pack setting. Dominence and all that jazz.....plus they most likely grate on each others nerves as much as we get on each others nerves from time to time. Inside is Molly the 8 yr old female, and Betsy the soon to be 3 yr old female who adores Molly and has since birth. One of the primary reasons we kept her. It has taken 3 yrs. But tonight Molly and Betsy had their first fight. Molly has never in her 8 yrs started a fight. Started off....they'd been out playing most of the day due to the warm weather. Betsy came in to find a bone and started chewing on it. (my bad as I usually have them put up) I was bogged down with homework...and Nichole didn't see the urgency in getting the bone put up because it was Betsy with the bone and Molly was nudging her way toward it. Well......things happened and Molly got the bone. Then of course Betsy wanted it. But Betsy goes submissive, exposes her belly to Molly while all but lying on Molly's nose. I get nervous simply because Aubrey is running around wanting to play with the dogs. I didn't want her hurt by accident. (neither dog would intentionally hurt her) I can't move to get the bone fast enough because I've got a lap full of homework and books and such. So I tell Nichole to get the bone. Nichole put the bone up. But then started to play with Betsy. Betsy was running around the livingroom like crazy excited. Bad idea. Molly won't tolerate crazy playing with a toddler in the room. Molly went to dicipline her in her usual bark growl thingy she does. Betsy growled back...... Then wham, the fight is on. Nichole can't pull them apart because she has stitches and these are big dogs. I toss homework thataway and go after Molly who is closest to me. I get them seperated. Nichole goes to put Betsy into her crate while I'm putting Molly into the bedroom. Betsy gets away from her and goes for Molly again! Ok. So we get them seperated. Betsy in her crate. Molly in the bedroom. They had to stay put for 15 mins. Sounds weird but I give my dogs time out. Then I checked for battle wounds. Evidently this time it was mostly bluff and no one was hurt. At the moment they are seperated by a baby gate. Betsy in the kitchen with me, Molly in the livingroom. While I know arguments are bound to happen.....it makes me nervous. And frankly I hate it. Back when we had Precious.......her and Molly used to wind up bloody and hurt. (which is why Precious found another home) But with them.......it was Precious determined to be dominant, Molly just as determined that a pup she raised wasn't going to dominate her. Molly doesn't have alot of teeth left. She's older. I doubt she could hurt Betsy seriously. But Betsy is another matter altogether. Betsy has been content to be submissive to Molly. But that last minute lunge at Molly has me worried. Now that Betsy has found the courage to fight back.....is this gonna be an all the time thing?? Is Betsy going to want to be top dog now that she figures Molly won't really hurt her? For those who are skeptical on the Time out for dogs..........Well, that's how I trained Molly to do all the cool stuff she does and to prevent unwanted behavior. Same for Betsy. And no, it doesn't make them wary of their crate.......at least it never has my dogs. So. Guess my question is.......anything you can actually do about them fighting, or is it just something I'm going to have to deal with?? (meanwhile I'm hoping this is a one time deal) Cuz no way am I giving up either dog. BUT it has made me decide I'll probably never own more than one dog at a time in the future. PS I know I've asked about this in the past...........but thanks to a rather holey memory.........yeah, well, you get the idea.