Did you know that dogs can suffer from middle child syndrome? Well, this condition can occur if you live in a multiple pet household. Your dog can change his behavior and turn into a disobedient furry beast overnight. However, do you know how to stop this behavior?
What is a middle child syndrome in French bulldogs?
The way that owners treat their four-legged kids depends on where they fall in the pecking order and this may have an impact on how they grow up too! The so-called birth order theory says that as your dog goes through life, his relationship with other family members will change and grow. It's common for Frenchies to feel like they "get less attention" when there is more than one dog/pet who shares their favorite human. As the result, dogs who feel like they’ve been caught in the middle will tend to behave a little bit ‘bossy’.
We can also explain the middle child dog syndrome as a sort of French bulldog jealousy. In case you own a senior French bulldog who shows signs of age-related issues and requires close supervision, your younger pooch can feel neglected.
Younger dogs or middle dogs are usually not so confident as the first-brought dogs. They often feel misunderstood or left out, so we have to make a good balance between all pets in the household.
Dogs are like kids. They want attention from their owners and sharing the love and time with other pets doesn’t sound well for them at all. When the family has three dogs, the middle dog can start feeling jealous or bored. As the result, he/she will start making trouble and behave like he’s dealing with an epic-size problem.
When age isn’t the only factor…
You’ve probably heard of the saying that ‘dogs are the mirrors of their human parents’. Therefore, if your middle French bulldog became stubborn or bossy, you’re the only one responsible for such occurrence. The dog’s behavior is impacted by their parents. For example, if you own three dog breeds of different level activities, ages, and needs, the second pup may feel abandoned. He/she will also see rivals in the other two dogs from the family.
Due to lack of your attention, the middle Frenchie can start destroying home items, bark a lot, even ‘forget’ the housebreaking rules. Some pooches can even start suffering from anxiety and start licking specific body parts excessively.
How to prevent jealousy between dogs from the same household?
Giving your pet the attention they deserve can be a challenge, especially if you have more high-maintenance pets in comparison to low-maintenance ones. Try dividing up how much care each type gets so everyone feels included!
One of the tips is to practice positive reinforcement equally. Always praise your dogs’ good behaviors and don’t reward the bad ones.
In case you’re playing fetch together, don’t forget to equally include all the dogs in the game. The same rule applies to giving toys. Even though every dog should have its own toys, the main rule is to choose a specific time during the day for playing. Dogs should not have free access to toys all the time. They should be available only when you’re busy, out of the house, and you think they need ‘tools’ to occupy their minds and spend the pent-up energy.