Socializing your puppy is one of the most important things you can do for him. It teaches him to be a good citizen and gives him confidence and social skills. The earlier you socialize, the easier things will be for your puppy and other creatures he encounters in life.
To introduce your new friend to his new world:
– Control the pack instinct every dog inherits
Your puppy will test you and other family members, attempting to establish dominance as leader of the pack. Everyone in the family must help him understand that he must obey the house rules.
– Put him in lots of different situations.
He needs to learn how to interact with people of all ages. The sooner he learns how to be gentle with seniors, children and toddlers, the more naturally it will come to him later.
– Introduce him to other animals
Not just dogs, but cats, birds, rabbits or any beast he might run into in the natural course of a day. Protect his new furry friends by keeping your puppy on his leash during introductions. If he misbehaves, make eye contact and tell him “no.”
– Take your puppy in the car with you.
Make it a regular occurrence so that he doesn’t associate it exclusively with a trip to the veterinarian.
– Visit parks, lakes, festivals, and city streets or anywhere puppies are welcome.
Teach him to be comfortable in a variety of environments and you’ll reduce the chance that he’ll grow up to be shy or fearful.
Remember, the kind of dog your puppy will become depends more on how he’s socialized than on his genetic potential. No matter the breed, he can grow up with a sunny, obedient temperament with your help.