Socialising your puppy during a lockdown shouldn’t be too different to how you would socialise him under normal circumstances.
Even before my puppy has had all his injections I take him out, in the safety of my arms, to see the world at large. I sit on a park bench, low wall near shops etc., and gently chat away to him as he is watching what is going on. I always have some tasty treats with me and I will give him one every now and again while he is relaxed. The treats should small enough to be easily eaten (not crunchy like biscuits) and of a high value. I find the Leader and Go Native treats pawfect for the occasion and my puppies love them.
Allowing your puppy to experience different noises and sights this way will make experiencing them on the ground less traumatic.
During this period I am working to ensure my puppy ‘bonds’ with me, thinks I am more safe as well as exciting and fun to be with than other people and dogs. The current ‘social distancing’ regulations allows people to talk to the puppy without getting too close and in the puppy’s ‘personal’ space. Imagine how threatened you would feel if a stranger suddenly put his face close up to yours?
All this mental ‘exercise’ will tire the puppy out not stress him out. If he is worried about the distractions then step back, let him experience them from further away, only moving closer as he learns there is nothing to be worried about. You can download ‘noise distraction’ recordings from the internet and play the noises in the safety of your home to acclimatise him (following instructions re usage).
Now a days people seem to think that socialising a puppy means ‘puppy play dates’, meet ups in the dog park for rough play etc. When in fact it should be that the puppy learns to respond to his owner around distractions – remember you are more important than other dogs or people.
In the above article the reference to ‘he’ covers both male and female.
© copyright Julie Holmes Ch.M.I.A.C.E
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Once I understand the challenge you and your dog are facing, I can help you overcome it in a way that suits you and your dog. Every situation and every dog-human partnership is unique.