Tips for Socializing Your DogFriday, February 15th, 2019, 9:01 am
Socializing is an important step in training your dog to play well with others. There are a number of programs designed to help socialize your dog, but you do need to continue working with your canine friend on a regular basis to ensure that he remains happy and friendly around others. Otherwise, they may forget all about their socialization lessons. Here are a few tips for socializing your dog so that they enjoy their time spent with others.
If you adopt your dog as a puppy, begin socializing early. Ideally, you’ll let your new puppy meet other people, dogs, and animals when they are around four weeks old. They are the most receptive to meeting others while they’re between four and 14 weeks old, so during that time, have them around as many people, animals, and even different sounds and scents as you can. If you’ve adopted an older dog, though, don’t worry—they can still learn to be social, it might just take a little extra time.
To help reinforce everything your dog has learned from socialization training, you want to make sure they socialize regularly. Part of this may occur naturally—you may have friends over regularly who will help your dog get used to other people. You may see other dogs on walks or have friends who live nearby who bring their dogs over for play dates. If you don’t, you may want to set aside time once a week to visit a dog park.
Don’t Overdo It
That said, you also need to be aware of when your dog has had enough and wants to go home. In the beginning, your dog may tire of being around others fairly quickly, especially if you have adopted an older dog who isn’t used to being around children or energetic puppies. Being too social can actually have some harmful side effects. If you notice your dog cowering, backing away, barking, or otherwise looking like they’ve had enough, it may be time to go.
Visit the Right Place
You want to make sure that wherever you take your dog for socialization, it’s a place that they feel safe and will encourage them to socialize. A dog park with lots of loud noises may not be the right place to start socializing. Likewise, you may not want to take your dog to visit friends who have young children if your dog hasn’t been around kids much. Think through what may happen at any place before you take your dog there to socialize.
Have questions about socialization or want to enroll your dog in one of our training programs? Contact The Connected Canine today for more information.
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