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Posted Sunday, 9 Feb 2014

Affiché : Sunday, 9 Feb 2014

Gillian Ridgeway

All puppies need to socialize. However, socializing your puppy doesn’t mean walking down the same street, to the same park and meeting the same dogs. It’s very important to get your puppy out and about, to be socialized to the world around him. Set goals and meet them daily. Many new puppy owners expect to get their pup out romping in the park (as soon as their vaccination protocol is complete), but most do not expect to make this a project. The first year is critical for exposure to as many people and places as possible.
Write yourself a puppy scavenger-hunt list and include tasks such as meeting a man with a beard, riding in an elevator and walking beside a stroller. Keep the list posted, and make sure you put time aside to complete each exercise.
It is not uncommon for puppies to go through a fear stage, and suddenly become afraid of things such as loud noises or passing cars, even after all the socialization you’ve done with him. It’s important to not coddle him. Speak to him in a friendly, positive tone rather than sounding anxious. Change his fear by pairing it with treats and toys. Magically, when he hears a loud noise his toy will appear. Soon his anxiety will change to anticipation and he will be set up for a more secure future.
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