Good Ol’ Socialization
There are different ways to socialize your puppy. Let’s quickly recap: There are socialization only classes where dogs run around and play with each other while their humans supervise. These classes are held by pet care professionals and they help to moderate them and to assist. There are puppy training group classes that offer a limited amount of time for dogs to interact. Maybe a bit at the beginning and at the end of their obedience lesson. There are dog parks where it’s like a box of chocolates…. and theres doggy day care where they are supervised without you being present and there are puppy play dates that you set up your self (check out this post on setting the perfect puppy play date). Notice that I did not mention that the dogs in your home count as socialization. Although interactions between siblings are important and you should be training your new pup how to behave appropriately with others.. the truth is your dog will grow up with those dogs. That’s easy. What she needs is to not be afraid, aggressive, nervous around “new” dogs. So we start teaching them young. Below are times when you should intervene during a puppy play session.
You Should Intervene When..
- You hear more than 2 yelps in a 1 minute time span.
- Energy is just starting to pick up and begins to escalate (do not wait for them to go completely off the wall).
- If one dog tries to get on another. Usually this looks like a dog getting up on its hind legs and placing both paws up on the other dog for an extended period of time. That leads me to my next point: please intervene if there is any humping going on as well. Ideally, you redirect it before it happens and you see that your dog is getting on its hind legs.
Always Supervise, Never Leave A Puppy Alone With Another Dog
Supervise, Supervise, Supervise! Don’t leave dogs especially a puppy to be left to their own devices. Serious injury can and does occur. Stay near your fur baby!
Moderating playtime can be challenging. Sometimes you don’t know if your dogs are fighting or playing or if they are hurting eachother. This is where it’s helpful to have a trainer. Whenever this situation arises I ask my puppy parents to send me video examples to set their mind at ease or alert them of any red flags. You can take a look at my services or contact me here with video footage.