When is the right time to introduce your puppy to other dogs?
But there’s a few things to consider…
1️⃣ Avoid dog parks, especially if your puppy has not gotten all their distemper/parvo vaccines. Dog parks are not the best place to teach your puppy social skills with other dogs, because a high percentage of dog owners will bring their dog to the dog park to work on socialization. Now you have a bunch of under-socialized kids trying to figure out the right way to socialize. Doesn’t sound like a safe deal to me. 🤷♀️
2️⃣ Avoid allowing your puppy to go up to other dogs that are on a leash when you’re out walking your puppy. Trust me, you’ll be glad you didn’t let your puppy pull and go say hi to a stranger’s dog. This prevents your puppy from developing overexcitement on your walks and will regress engagement. Prevents them from developing bad habits like leash pulling and reactivity, because if they learn if they pull on the leash they get to say hi to that dog. Another reason is when they get older they can become leash reactive at other dogs, which can be your dog throwing a fit that they cannot go say hi since that’s what they always did. And it just isn’t safe. You don’t know if that strangers dog is friendly even if they say they are. 😕
3️⃣ Schedule play dates with dogs that you know are very well socialized and play fairly. If your puppy is under 4 1/2 months, keep it SHORT! No more than 20 minutes and if under 20 minutes and you notice your puppy doing zoomies and have the crazy eyes, time to end the play date. This is to prevent an adrenaline junkie or the other dog getting annoyed. This is another subject for a later time. 😜 If you don’t know anyone’s dog that you trust is well socialized, contact a trusted and structured daycare.
4️⃣ Always supervise the dog socialization. Advocate for your puppy if the other dog is being too much and your puppy is trying to get away and vice versa. This will show your puppy they can trust that you have their back. 😉
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