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Properly Socializing Your Dog

group class socialization Jun 01, 2022

What is "proper socialization"? 

You're walking down the street with your dog and you come across another dog.

"OMG! Another dog! They are going to love each other and be friends!"

Wrong! This is a recipe for disaster. You need to respect the dog, the owner, and their space, as they should yours.

Dogs don't need to be friends. They don't need to say "hi".

It is your responsibility, as an owner to advocate not to approach them.

Think about it. Do you see a stranger and give them a hug? Probably not. You smile, say hi, and keep walking. The principle here is the same.

Another reason we don't necessarily love doggie daycares or dog parks. They generally are "free for alls" with dogs running all over the place, and owners thinking it's "fun" for the dog. In reality, some of the dogs are intimidated, fearful, others are trying to rank, some may be activating their prey drives... it's just too much of an uncontrolled situation for us to be comfortable with, which is why we don't recommend them. (use your own judgement, but this is our opinion)

So, the question becomes "what is proper socialization then?". 

It's about teaching the dogs how to co-exist, and learning how to be "neutral" to one another. This goes for people and dogs alike. Most importantly, it's about the handler controlling the situation.

Be proactive, use your leash, your body language and your voice when necessary.


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