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Socialisation - A Better Understanding and the Importance of Positive Interaction

Published February 11, 2021

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Dog socialising on driveway with a cat

Socialisation seems to be a misunderstood topic by many pet owners.

When you purchase a puppy, you are advised by breeders, vets and others to get out and socialise your puppy! When I ask my new clients what socialisation has your dog had, these are some common answers I hear:

  • “We take our dog/puppy to the dog park every week so that he can run around with other dogs.”
  • “We went to a puppy preschool where the puppies ran around together.”
  • “We have another dog at home, and they socialise well.”
  • “Other family members have dogs, and they all play in the backyard when we catch up.”

Socialisation is so much more than just interacting with other dogs. In fact, poor interaction with other dogs as puppies can cause a lifetime of behavioural problems.

I like to think about socialisation as exposure to various environments and stimuli like the local park, the beach, cafes, dogs, children, and strangers. Whilst exposing your puppy, it is important to teach them the value of such places and stimuli. Allowing your puppy to meet every person and rush up to every dog can cause leash pulling and lunging.

Elite Canine Training and Behaviour run a Puppy program that teaches puppy owners how to socialise their new puppy correctly and so much more. Our Puppy program is for puppy owners who want to get it right from the start by working closely with a Professional Trainer both privately and in a group setting.