Your Guide to Socializing a Puppy

Sounds


Introduce new sounds at a quiet level, such as running the vacuum in another room with the door closed or playing the sounds of thunder or fireworks at a very low volume while your puppy eats a meal. Gradually increase the sound level as your puppy's comfort with the noise increases.

  • Vacuum cleaner
  • Dishwasher or washing machine
  • Thunder
  • Gunshots
  • Animal sounds
  • Traffic noises
  • Sirens
  • Music
  • Household tool use (kitchen mixer, blow dryer)
  • Construction noise

Handling


  • Baths
  • All body parts touched and examined, including sensitive areas like paws, nails, ears, tail, tummy, eyes and mouth
  • Being comfortable with various items they may wear, such as clothes, harness, head halter and collar
  • Grooming, including being brushed, clipped or having the nails trimmed
  • Being held in a variety of manners, including while standing or sitting
  • Being loomed over, being given eye contact, being petted in ways that may happen later in life, such as being hugged or patted

Situations

  • Veterinary office
  • Being crated
  • Being left alone for short amounts of time
  • Car rides
  • Groomer
  • Dog class or dog group
  • Getting a picture taken
  • Playing with a variety of toys
  • Walks both in the neighborhood and on busier streets with a variety of people
  • Joggers and bicyclists passing
  • Being taken to rural areas, such as the mountains or a field
  • Shopping carts, strollers, motorcycles or other objects that move
  • Going outside in different weather conditions, including rain or wind
  • City situations, such as automatic doors, outdoor cafes and airports
  • Visitors at the house
  • Walking on various surfaces, including grass, cement, tile, sand, mud, snow, ice and stairs
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