Socialize your dog with some playtime
The Socialization of Your Dog is Really Important
Socialization is a critical part of training your dog, so take your dog out in the world and find new stuff to see, smell, hear, and feel. The more stuff your dog can experience, the more comfortable your dog will become in most any situation. It's also important for them to interact with other dogs as a puppy and have positive experiences with other dogs. They'll react better when they see other dogs.
Your dog should have positive experiences with other dogs and people.
Griffin (Irish Setter), Katniss (Airedale), and Ricco (Welsh Corgi) Socializing in the outdoor play area at The Dog Mall in Carver, MA
Here are our best tips for socializing your dog:
Don't Tug On-leash: Resist Tugging on the leash or scalding your dog when they react to other dogs.
When you're out walking your dog and another dog comes into view, your dog may bark or react; resist jerking on the lead and yelling at your dog. This gives your dog the idea and reinforces that other dogs are bad and gives them a negative experience. Instead, distract your dog with a treat or toy, use the command “Watch me!” and praise him when s/he pays attention to you. With that approach, your dog will be programmed to pay attention to you when they see another dog, and it will give them a positive experience.
Slow Introductions: Introduce new people slowly and don't force your dog to them if they are shy.
When new people meet your dog, have them offer a treat and speak in a happy, low, encouraging voice. You don’t want to use a high pitch (i.e., squeaky voice), which could excite him. Keep your dog on a leash at first but do not force him or her to go near the person. Let your dog take his/her time and approach the person.
Controlled Observation : Take your dog outside to simply observe other dogs, maybe the neighbor's dogs or friend's dogs (known dogs).
If your dog barks aggressively or is reactive to other dogs, bring your dog further away until your dog stops barking. Once your dog stops barking, treat him/her. Now, continue to move towards the other dogs. if your dog begins to bark aggressively again, move away until they calm down again. continue that process until they can approach the dogs calmly without a reaction and reward them. This approach will give your reactive dog a positive association with other dogs and they'll be less likely to react when they see dogs outside.
Example of Socialization
Our Pug Hazel used to bark like crazy when she was 1-2 years old after she heard another dog bark or unusual sounds outside, even if the dog barking was on TV. She would jump out of bed from a dead sleep, barking like her life depended on it. We didn't yell at her (negative reinforcement) for barking when she heard those noises; That would make her associate those sounds with something that is bad. We also didn't comfort her by petting her (positive reinforcement); that would make think she should be barking when she heard those sounds.
Instead, when we ran errands or left the house for 1-2 hours, we would leave the TV on animal planet where she'd hear all kinds of animal noises. Guess what happened? She stopped reacting to noises she heard. Why? By leaving the TV on, she became accustom to hearing all types of sounds. She learned that those noises were neither good nor bad (i.e., nothing ever happen after she heard those sounds), and she just stopped barking at them. Now, she'd sleep right through a tornado!
This is just one type of socialization, but you get the point. exposing your dog to more situations will make them more comfortable in the end.
Come to our fREE dog Socialization 2-hour playtime
Watch The Fun
Join This Event and You'll Get
2-hours outside (Weather Permitting)
We'll leave out toys and balls for their use
We'll leave out some agility jumps and other things to build confidence
Let your dog observe and see other dogs
Big fenced-in area with plenty of room
See our facility and ask any questions about programs and training classes
Come anytime during the 2-hours
Enjoy a happy and tired dog after!
* Please only bring your dog if they've never shown signs of aggression.
Join Us Saturday
2:30-4pm Outside (Weather Permitting).
Simply enter Your Name, Email address, and dog breed below: