A lot of people have heard that when they get a puppy they need to socialize them however there are many misconceptions about how to do that.
Socialization is teaching an animal what is normal in the world. While animals are young they have a socilization window in which they are learning what in the world is safe and normal. They are open to learning and exploring the world more than an adult. It is important during that time to show a puppy a lot of what they might expereince in the human world which might be scary so they learn it is safe and will be more resilient as an adult.
To socilize your puppy we want to get puppies out into the world and show them things they might expereince. Most people seems to understand they should meet different people and dogs but it is more than that. We want to expose our dogs to different sounds, walking surfaces, objects, and experiences. You don’t need to make my puppy interact with anything they don’t want to but allowing them to watch, listen, and smell the world will go along way in the future.
If you puppy is scared of nervous of something don’t make them approach it instead let them walk away and try again later. This will teach them if they are nervous they can move away and they will trust you more for not dragging them near it. If you force your puppy close to something they find scary they will start to lose trust in you and not seek you out in a scary situtation because you make it more scary.
Top 3 Socilization Stragegies
- Doggie TV – Sit and watch the world go by. I often do this in the car or carrying the puppy if they don’t have all of their vaccinations.
- Meet Trusted Friends – Get friends and people you trust will listen to you if you ask them to just ignore or leave your puppy alone if your puppy gets nervous
- Training in different places – Take your puppy out to new parks, dog friendly businesses, and friends house and practice skills they are learning at home like sit and down
Quick socilization checklist for your puppy
-Other small animals (ie rats, hamsters, rabbits)
-Wiping Dry with a Towel
-Hair cut (if needed)
-Being Picked Up
-Dog Friendly Buildings
-Bags blowing in the wind