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2 min read

The Importance of Puppy Socialising

The Importance of Puppy Socialising

If you have a new puppy in your household, congratulations!  One of the crucial aspects of raising a well-rounded puppy is socialising them from a young age. 

Myth busting - socialising is just about meeting other dogs

Yes it is important that part of your puppy socialising includes supervised and calm meet and greets with other dogs.  But socialising is much more than that; it involves exposing them to a variety of sights, sounds and smells to help them become confident and well-adjusted dogs. Introducing your puppy to different environments such as parks, streets and even your local coffee shop or hardware store can help them feel comfortable and at ease in new environments.  Exposing them to various sounds such as traffic, doorbells, the vacuum cleaner, children playing, can help prevent anxiety in the future.  Remember, the world can be a big and overwhelming place for your pup, therefore it's important that you introduce it gradually. 

Myth busting - keeping my puppy busy will tire it out

If you keep you puppy busy all the time then it will become overtired, and an overtired puppy gets irratated, frustrated, nippy and over-aroused.  Often, keeping them busy and interacting all the time has the complete opposite of tiring them out; instead they don't learn the ability to self-calm and relax.  Young puppies need rest, time out watching the world go on around them, and sleep.  Encouraging calmness through positive reinforcement, training and allowing a lot of sleep-time will set the foundation for a calmer dog.  

Myth busting - socialising can only start when my puppy has had all it's vaccinations

You can start socialising your puppy well before it's had all it's vaccinations; just don't take them to environments where unknown dogs have been.  There are plenty of opportunities to start socialising your puppy around your house, or on your lap at the local cafe, or watching the traffic from your driveway.  The New Zealand Vet Association (NZVA) provide some great ideas on what you can do whilst you're waiting for your puppy to be fully vaccinated.  Use their information as a guide and start socialising earlier rather than later.

Myth busting - adopting an older puppy means that you've missed the window to start training and socialising it

A lot of puppy owners adopt from a rescue or animal shelter, with their puppy being older than 4 months when they adopt them.  This does not mean that you have missed the ability to socialise or train your older puppy; it just means your puppy starts this journey slightly later in life, but you follow the same guidelines as you would with a younger puppy.

Every puppy is unique, socialising and training them is a gradual process that requires patience, practice and lots of consistency.  Introducing them to new experiences, building a strong bond with you, their owner and focusing on calmness is all part of setting your puppy up to cope in the world we want them to live in.  

At K9 FUNdamentals we offer puppy training and socialising for all ages of pups via our Pup Programme, tailored to suit your training requirements and your puppy's age and experiences.  Check us out at www.k9fundamentals.co.nz and make contact if you need puppy training and socialising, we'd love to be part of your training journey with your puppy. 

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