Puppy socialisation is important to help your pup adjust to new experiences in a positive way and helps to shape proper behaviours for a well-behaved and balanced adult dog.
The crucial period for socialisation is about three to seventeen weeks of age.
Some important parts to socialisation include allowing puppies to:
- Be petted by many and a variety of humans;
- Engage and play with other puppies so they learn how to meet and greet, and learn the difference between ‘play bite’ and real biting;
- Learn how to be recalled by you when they are distracted by another dog, human, object or sound;
- Have positive experiences with different people, dogs and environments.
Whether you attend a structured socialisation session through a puppy school, an unstructured one with friends and other pet owners, or a combination of both (recommended to give your puppy maximum exposure), it is important to ensure your puppy and other puppies are appropriately vaccinated. Your vet will provide guidance on when it is safe for your puppy to start socialising with other dogs.
As your puppy gets older, pack dog walking and doggy day care sessions are great ways to regularly continue their socialising with other dogs.
Useful websites on puppy socialisation: