Defining Socialization

What is Dog Socialization?

Contrary to what people think, the term SOCIALIZATION of a puppy or dog is not primarily made up of play dates, doggie daycare, or dog parks. Quite the opposite is true.

Proper socialization for a puppy involves carefully planned, controlled exposure or acclimation to environments. Places where the puppy/dog can experience new sights from a safe distance, sounds, smells, and new objects on the puppy’s acceptance schedule. This also includes new people of different ages, races, and their ways of moving around, such as strollers, wheelchairs, or bicycles. Being around other animals is a part of the socialization process also, such as cats, cows, or other dogs etc.

Teaching your puppy how to calmly observe their surroundings, and then bringing their focus back to you, the owner, is probably the most desired part of the socialization process. Rather than allowing your puppy/dog to frantically engage in the outside world and be rewarded for that kind of activity, we wish to help you teach them think that YOU, the owner, is the most important part of their universe. That is the goal of socialization.

Participating in Daycare or Dog park activities is a very risky activity, which can lead to dog fights, injuries, poor social skills such as dog reactivity, the spread of illness, or serious physical, or emotional harm for an unsuspecting puppy. This may not always be the case, but as a professional in the dog industry, it is one of the most frequent subjects that we receive calls on.

The KEY concept in the activities and training classes at Family Dog Obedience is to help owners learn how to properly manage and socialize their particular puppy in the world they live in. It is not rocket science, but it is also not cookie-cutter easy.

For more information, or to schedule a consultation about how to better socialize your puppy or dog, please contact Val.

Please note: We do not work with dogs that have a bite history, aggression towards other people, or dogs/animals due to time limitations and liability.

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