[HELP] Brothers are constantly tense with each other and almost getting fights in an instant.

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sourced from: https://www.reddit.com/r/Dogtraining/comments/gs23d6/help_brothers_are_constantly_tense_with_each/

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Background of my dog: he used to be stuck in a cage almost 24/7 aside from potty breaks. (Horrible I know) but now I’ve been walking him, giving him baths, stuff like that. (Suspicion on; German Shepherd, Belgian Malinois, black mouth cur? Sent DNA; waiting for results) (medium size, slim)

My cousins dog: he always get to roam around the house while my dog was always in a cage. (blue pit (mix?)) (he’s also buff)

They play very well and when he does come out of the cage, they get along great.

So it literally happened today.

My dog would stay in my room and my cousins dog would stay at his.

When my cousins dog came into my room, there was a little tension (now that I think about it. Tails high) I turned my head around for me to hear my dog growl. I immediately pulled him away (because he never growled like that; the warning type of growl). Out of instinct my cousins dog growled back, but we pulled them away fast enough to not start any type of fights.

After a little cool down, my dog went straight for my cousins dog in a friendly way. But you could feel there was a bit of tension. The moment I heard one growl I pulled my dog away by his neck away from my cousins. My cousin dog was growling. There was no barking. I pulled him away and as my cousin was trying to get him back into his room, he had to walk by me and my dog. They both kinda tried to lunge at each other, but we both told them “no” and “be nice” things like that.

Then there was a bit of more of a cool down. Then we both held them on leashes ( I don’t know if this was a smart move..but) to see if they would fight again or it was just a little scuffle they had. My cousins dog had a lot of tension. Tails down. Straight stare at my dog. We both told them to calm down.

We did this for a while and what I have noticed is that my dog would growl but didn’t do much. Just a warning type of growl. My cousins dog would stare down, a bit of hair up (here and there with my cousin telling him it’s okay)

Then I also noticed that my dog would growl and my cousins dog kinda tried to bite? I think but nothing happened. I’m not 100% sure on this.

They would also not look at each other in the eye, but are standing in close proximity. My dog would growl and my cousin dog would have more tension. We would tell them it’s okay. Be nice. Things like that.

The funny thing is that, they were both very submissive but this time they both didn’t back down. My dog would lick his mouth and my cousins dog would just let him like nothing is going on. And then a few seconds later a growl here and there. Again we told them it’s okay. Be nice. Things like that.

We then thought maybe my dog was territorial, so we let them both in my room and see what would happen. Nothing happened much. It was fine. My dog would just lay down but you could see that he was staring at him. My cousin dog would walk in and out. Like nothing is going on. But if there was any tension my cousin dog would stare at my dog and my dog would just be standing there wagging his tail like nothing is going on until they are close proximity and for some reason would start growling.

Before my dog was let out of the cage completely, when he was let out, he would go to my cousins room and they would be fine. They get along great.

I don’t know if this is relevant, but I have my dog a really in depth shower because he really needed. I don’t know if it’s the smell or anything.

Disclaimer: I know and feel like what we did (confront them) wasn’t the best idea but we all live together and my cousin dog is always roaming around the house when my cousin is home. If not, he would be in a cage. For my dog, I’m almost constantly home so he always follow me around the house. Occasionally going to the trash. I don’t really need criticism..? But would appreciate the advice on how to fix this. I would like advice on why this is so sudden and how they could get along again or is that off the table?

Sorry for being so long.

TLDR – siblings grew up together and suddenly broke into fight and won’t get along anymore.

Edit – they are about 2-4 years old.

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