So you’ve got your pooch! A little guy or gal that makes you laugh, lose sleep, and takes up most of your mobile phone gallery. That little bundle of fur is at an integral part of their life, where they learn how to act around you, strangers, and other animals, especially if your puppy is between 7 and 16 weeks old. The key is to create positive experiences between your puppy and the outside world early on so they are less likely to be afraid or aggressive later on. To help you with this, we’ve scoured the net to bring you the top tips on how to socialise your puppy.
Meet Other Dogs
Puppy socialisation begins with getting your dog used to being around other dogs. Taking part in pet-friendly activities, like hiking, adventure golf, and other activities can be a great way to enjoy time with your dog and socialise them. Puppies, much like babies, need to learn to communicate with their species. Without being exposed to other dogs, they can become fearful, anxious or aggressive.
Use Controlled Environments
Controlling environments is especially useful if you have a very young puppy. The outside world can be overwhelming. Ease them into it by inviting friends, family and their pets over. Introducing your puppy to one or two new faces allows them to fully explore and get used to other faces without scaring or overwhelming them. It’s important to only invite friendly, healthy, vaccinated dogs over. This precaution will limit the chance of your puppy getting ill and prevent any fights or bad experiences.
Socialisation games are another good way to reinforce good behaviours. One of the most basic is a puppy learning its name through recall. At dinner time, divide their food into several small plastic bags. Give your friends or family a bag each and place the puppy in the centre of the room. Each of you can then take turns calling their name. When the puppy goes to you, give them the food and provide plenty of petting and praises. Practising in this way trains your puppy to approach people without fear or apprehension.
Watch out for Red Flags
Dogs may not be able to talk to you but they can still convey their feelings. Sometimes things can be a little too much for your puppy and it’s important to know when it’s time to remove them from that environment. Signs of stress include;
- Tucking the tail between the legs
- Licking their lips
- Ears lying flat and back
- Fear to leave your side
- Turning away from people or dogs they fear
These are just a few of the ways puppies communicate with you make sure to keep a watchful eye as you introduce them to new surroundings, people and dogs.
Puppy and dog-training schools are perfectly placed to help you understand how to look after your new dog. A few sessions will work wonders for dogs and their owners and allow you to reinforce good behaviour, understand your dog better, and socialise with other dogs and people. Make sure to choose a school that is accredited by a trusted name such as the Kennel Club Accredited Instructors Scheme.
Take your puppy on an adventure with Adventure Experience
Adventure Experience is a pet-friendly site that is happy to welcome families and their pets. Why not bring your pet on a lead, let them explore the magical world of Adventure Experience, and help them develop important socialising skills when discovering new people, dogs, sounds, and smells.
Adventure golf is great for beginners and practised golfers requiring nothing more than a little skill and a whole lot of luck. Each of our Florida-style adventure golf courses features 18 unique holes designed to test your mettle. We have a raft of safety measures in place to keep you and your family safe, all while having some fun in the sun. Quick book online or contact us for more information on our exciting list of activities and adventures.