The first weeks and months of life represent an crucial phase for puppies, in which they gain numerous new experiences and are massively influenced by these. It is highly recommended that up to the fourth or fifth month your puppy experiences as many adventures as possible. So that they can prepare themselves in the best possible way for their future life.
Ideally, you have already bought your puppy from an experienced, reliable and trustworthy breeder who has already done some preliminary work which will make the socialization of your pup a little easier. You can then build on this and develop your puppy further in the area of socialization.
However, you should always make sure that you do not overstrain your pup, because they have a rather moderate attention span especially in their younger years, so long intensive and demanding exercise sessions are not recommended.
Furthermore, it is important that you do not endorse your dog’s feeling of being frightened by something in any situation by hugging it or expressing similar encouragement.
Socialization with people
When it comes to dealing with people, you should make your pooch familiar with all sorts of people early on, as they will also meet many people later on. You in particular should always act confidently, so that your dog notices that they do not have to be afraid of people either and also meet them confidently.
It is also important to get them used to human gestures: An example of this is walking towards your dog and stroking it with your hand. In the dog world, this is a sign of dominance, which is intensified when the person smiles, which the dog interprets as teeth snarling.
Socialization with other dogs
When it comes to socializing your puppy with other dogs, the following aspects should be considered: Ideally, your pup will be socialized with other puppies and friendly adult dogs at the beginning, although the socialization here is generally not as demanding as those with humans, since both the mother dog and the sibling puppies have usually already done intensive preliminary work.
Dogs should also be socialized with those of other breeds, because they have different behavior patterns, habits and characteristics, so that your puppy can also learn how to deal with other breeds of dogs. Here you should pay more attention to the socialization process, because the socialization of two different dog breeds with each other is more demanding than it is with the same breed.
You should also consider the following:
You should definitely take your time and give your puppy the chance to constantly get used to other people and new dogs. First and foremost, of course, you should ensure a good relationship between you and your pooch so that it has the best possible preconditions to become an excellent socialized adult later on.
In the meantime, some great apps for dog socialization are also available: For example, you can use the “Pawdates” application to create dog and a human profile for yourself and, set up play dates with other users based on age, breed, size etc. and then meet with them and their dogs! – an excellent opportunity to combine dog socialization with new social contacts!