A friend of mine did not properly socialize her dog as a puppy. As a result, it took a lot of extra time and effort to socialize her dog to be comfortable around other dogs and other people at the age of 3.
Here are 4 easy steps to follow when introducing your dog to another dog:
- Start with the dogs 10 feet apart. This will show you what their initial reactions towards each other are. If either of the dogs shows signs of aggression, then your dog was simply not meant to be friends with this dog.
- Have 1 dog in the sit position. While one dog is in the sit position, have the other dog walk about 5 to 6 feet away from your dog. Then reverse the roles and have your dog be the one to walk by the other dog.
- Walk by each other in the heel position. Have your dog on your left side and in the heel position. Have the other person do the same with their dog. Walk past each other, but keep the dogs separated by your bodies. This lets the dogs see each other from different angles.
- Allow the dogs to sniff each other. Each dog owner should approach the other with their dog in the heel position. Once you are 3 to 4 feet apart, put the dogs in the sit position and allow them to slowly start sniffing each other. After a few seconds, lead the dogs away do a u-turn and repeat. Each time, allow the dogs to sniff each other a little longer.
In order for your dog to live a long and healthy life, it is very important to make sure that your dog is well socialized. That’s why you will want to start socializing your dog as soon as you bring your dog home. It’s no joke that socializing your dog may be the most important thing you do!
Here are 3 important things to remember when socializing dogs:
- While you are socializing your dog, you will probably come across other dogs that are just not ready to become friends with your dog. Simply avoid those dogs altogether and concentrate your efforts at socializing dogs that are naturally attracted to each other.
- The first time you spot any sign of aggression, immediately stop. Try not to tense up or act nervous because dogs can sense that, and they may become agitated or aggressive simply because they sense your own nervous behavior. The goal is to let dogs get comfortable with one another on their own terms, rather than being forced to get along simply because you want them to be friends.
- Always keep the dogs on their leashes when you are first socializing dogs. That way, you will have control at all times if one should accidentally frighten the other one or if any signs of aggression should arise.