Has a puppy recently joined your household? Congratulations! You certainly have some adorable moments ahead of you as you begin this long and loving friendship with your new pet. One aspect of puppy care that is very important for puppy parents to be aware of is socialization. But, just what is socialization, and why is it so important? In this article from Arapahoe Animal Hospital, your Boulder, CO vet, serving Louisville and surrounding areas, a local vet discusses socializing your puppy.
Why Is Socialization Important
Little Fido needs to learn how to interact with people and other animals while he’s young. This will teach him to see new people and experiences in a positive light, so he grows into a polite, friendly pooch. This isn’t just about keeping that cute tail wagging: it’s actually crucial to your pet’s emotional and mental development. Dogs that were not properly socialized as puppies are much more likely to develop behavioral issues as adults.
When To Socialize
There is a very definitive window of time for socializing your puppy. That window begins to close at about 8 weeks. By the time is about 12 weeks old, it may be too late.
How To Socialize
Socializing puppies can be lots of fun! Invite some friends and family members with gentle, well-behaved dogs over for a puppy party. Or, you can take your furry pal to a park, and just sit with him. It probably won’t be long before people approach you, wanting to pet the little guy. You can also make playdates with friends that have friendly pooches. If your schedule is packed, ask your vet for advice on sending your furry pal to doggy daycare.
Always put safety first: make sure your puppy is current on vaccines and parasite control, is microchipped, and is wearing his ID tags. When you are socializing little Fido, it’s important to make sure he feels comfortable. Watch for any signs that your puppy is feeling scared or anxious. Some common ones are licking the lips and shaking. Your puppy may also try to hide behind you if he feels uneasy. If you see any of these warning signs, take the little guy home, and try again another day.
Do you have questions about socialization? We can help! Contact us here at Arapahoe Animal Hospital, your Boulder, CO vet, serving Louisville and surrounding areas, anytime!