How To Socialize Your Puppy with Other Dogs and Humans
Updated: Aug 31
So, you know what they say. It’s a dog’s world and you are just living in it – but that does not mean that they get a free pass every time they snarl at a passerby or bark at another dog. Proactively socializing your puppy is extremely important because it is the key to ensuring that you have a happy, well-behaved, and confident dog – an upstanding canine citizen if you will. It is during your pup’s first three months of life that they will experience a critical socialization period, which will not only shape their personality but also determine how they react to their surroundings as an adult dog. When you gradually introduce them to a variety of people, places, sounds, and even animals, it can make a major difference in their behavior and temperament. Here are a few tips to do that:
1. Time is of the essence
When your puppy is between 3 to 12 weeks, it is the perfect window to socialize them so that they are positively acclimated to different environments. Typically, ethical breeders begin the socialization process much before you bring the puppy home. This is one of the biggest reasons why you should get your pup from a knowledgeable breeder who encourages a positive experience with people and other dogs.
2. Introduce them to different kinds of people
You need to expose your puppy to various people, including adults and children so that they can get used to being around humans who are much bigger than them. This needs to be done so that your dog has a more diversified social calendar. You can use an appropriate amount of treats and praise to ensure that they have a positive association with meeting new people.
3. Daily walks are crucial
Daily walks are perhaps one of the best ways to socialize your new puppy with other dogs. If they are vaccinated, you can take them for a walk on the leash or visit the dog park. If they aren’t fully vaccinated, you can take them out on a stroller or a bag. Just make sure that they don’t eat anything off the ground or come face to face with other dogs.
4. Sign up for puppy class
Dog training classes offer a safe and controlled environment to meet other dogs and humans. You can ask your vet to recommend classes that might be a good fit for you and your furry baby. These classes can also help your pup master a few basic commands.
5. Always exercise caution
Introducing your tiny pup to a giant adult dog might seem like a cute, fun idea, but you need to be quite careful while socializing with other dogs. Do not allow for a meet and sniff unless you know that the other dog is friendly. If you notice any signs of discomfort or fear in your own dog, take immediate action.
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