Puppy Socialization – There is a time in the life of a puppy when he is all about learning. This is when puppy socialization is pivotal in determining what is this dog going to be like, socially, when he becomes an adult. Even more important, this period will determine the personality of the dog and how he will react to his environment.
Socializing a puppy has its ways, time, and reason. Take a look at how you should help the puppy meet world.
The critical time for puppy socialization
Puppy socialization involves exposing him to all kinds of stimuli, including people, other animals, and the environment, without overwhelming him. If you overdo it, the opposite of a socially adapted animal might happen: fear, avoidance, and changes in dog behavior.
A poorly socialized dog will not have learned how to adapt to different changes, turning him into a problematic dog. This turns into an issue for the handler, the veterinarian, pet sitter, groomer, and visitors to the house.
Timing is everything when it comes to puppy socialization. The critical time to do this is during his first three months of life. This means that basically, you should start the process as soon as the puppy arrives home for the first time.
The first three months of a puppy is the time in which he is all about learning. His brain is more accepting of new situations and changes in his environment. His experiences during this time will shape the character of the dog, his temperament and his behavior.
If this important process of socialization does not take place during these first three months, the chances of developing a dog with anxious behavior increase.
Tips for a successful puppy socialization
Now that you know that you must socialize your puppy, perhaps your next question is what exactly to do. Check out these tips:
- Invite friends over and their pets to come and meet the new family member.
- Enroll your puppy to puppy class, to provide him with a minimum exposure as he grows comfortable.
- Get him used to bathing, brushing, grooming, and everything that teaches him to be comfortable while you handle him.
- Expose him to unusual noises and sounds so that when he hears them all of a sudden, he is not startled.
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