Developing Your Dog’s Social Skills
As a pet owner, you want your dog to interact well with other people and with other dogs. Socializing your dog is an important step in his development and in helping him become a good citizen.
Form Positive Associations
In many shelters, a big part of getting dogs and puppies ready for the adoption floor is having volunteers and staffers play with them. That's because play - even something as simple as fetch - helps socialize dogs and gives them positive associations with people.
Socializing with Other Dogs
When it comes to socializing your dog with other dogs, proceed with caution. Puppies usually love to be around other puppies, but some adult dogs that haven't been socialized adequately at an earlier age may find the pressure to play with other dogs stressful. If you bring your dog to a place full of other dogs, at first it may be best to keep him close to you and reward him for sitting quietly while other dogs pass by.
Avoid Stressful Interactions
Remember, playing with other dogs should be fun for your dog, so if your dog exhibits signs of stress, it may be best to enjoy some other activities.
Socializing your dog may be a gradual process, but one that is well worth the effort.