If you’ve ever gotten a puppy, you’ve likely been told of the importance of socialization; giving your pet the opportunity to spend positive time with other dogs and people. Many pet experts consider puppy socialization a vital step in the development of a healthy doggie-owner relationship. Puppies learn proper behavior from their owners. If they are led in the wrong direction or not led at all, their development will suffer greatly. Socialization is key to raising a puppy that is calm and collected in all situations.
Why is early socialization is important? Puppies, like human babies, mature through specific development stages. From week three to three months of age, puppies are in their prime for experiences with humans and other animals, as well as training in obedience and beyond. During this time, puppies get a feel for where they feel safe, what they fear, and what and who they should avoid. According to Brydie Charlesworth, dog trainer and behaviorist, “It’s during this period that extensive socialization should occur for the long-term benefit of your dog. It’s not only critical to expose puppies to as many people and friendly dogs as possible; but also, it’s important to habituate them to everyday situations, such as foot traffic, vehicles, stairs, and groups of people, etc.” (courtesy of: https://www.avodermnatural.com/blog/socializing-your-new-puppy)
The American Veterinary Society of Animal Behavior (AVSAB) recommends that puppies start socializing as early as possible and are trained using positive reinforcement techniques instead of negative ones. “When a puppy’s confidence builds, the anxiety goes down. They know that they can look to you for guidance and support if they encounter a situation where they are feeling unsure. It’s a team effort,” says Charlesworth. Your puppy will start to know you as their superior, and they will obey and submit to you when they are rewarded with treats for their good behavior.
Having trouble finding the right process for training your dog? Have you acquired a new dog or rescue that could use some extra TLC to get them conditioned, happy and obedient? Ruffgers is just the place to call for all of your behavioral needs, whether your pup is just a baby or a senior that needs some extra attention.