The easy way to socialize a dog

A properly socialized dog can adapt well to any given situation – can get along well with all the pets of the family and all the members of the household. Socialization is one way of developing a dog into a good canine citizen that will be a most valued companion of the family. Proper socialization prevents the development of unwanted behavior and turns the dog into a happy and well behaved member of the family. A first time dog owner may have heard about the necessity to socialize the pet, of the benefits of socialization but how is a dog socialized.

Dogs are social creatures but similar to humans, our four legged friends have different personalities. Expect a nervous or shy dog to react with fear or aggression when exposed to new faces or situations. A dominant one would try to control not only other animals but humans as well. Providing the basic needs of the dog is not the only responsibility of a pet owner. It is the responsibility of the pet owner to ensure that the pet is properly socialized so that it will grow into a well adjusted pet that can adapt to any situation and can interact with people and animals.

Socializing the pet is best started when the dog is about 8 to 16 weeks old. This is not to say that older dogs can no longer be socialized. To desensitize an older dog though, a pet parent has to be more patient and persistent. Socializing puppies would be easier as apart from having a curious nature; puppies have not yet formed hard to break habits.

As soon as the vet has given the GET-GO, the puppy must be introduced to everything that it will be exposed to when it gets older. Grooming will get the dog accustomed to being touched. These handling exercises will prepare the dog so that it will not react aggressively to being touched by the vet, by a child in the park or by a neighbor or a guest in the future.

Taking the dog to the local dog park or enrolling the dog to an obedience school will give the pet a chance to interact with other canines. It is necessary to give the pet a chance to meet as many people as possible and to be exposed to varied situations. Whenever there’s a chance take the dog along. The dog’s favorite treats will be positive reinforcements that will entice the dog to interact with people and other animals. These socialization efforts will develop the puppy into a well adjusted mature dog.

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