German Shepherd Dog Forums - View Single Post - rethinking "popular" early socialization
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Old 01-23-2014, 05:07 PM   #7 (permalink)
Muskeg
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Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Igloo
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Yes, indeed. I have fully hopped on board the anti-puppy playtime wagon. With my next pup, or if I have a litter, the pups will socialize with their "pack" and stable adult dogs only. I'd vastly prefer my dogs ignore other dogs than get excited about them. It is very annoying to have a dog that blows you off when another dog is around- for whatever reason- reactivity-defense or playfulness. I think the best way to raise a pup is to expose him/her to other dogs but not interact with them. That way, strange dogs just become background noise. If I was raising a pup with no other dogs in the household, I'd seek out stable adults to interact with- preferably of the shepherd variety. But I'd avoid puppy playtime unless it was one on one with a pup and owner I knew well and who had similar views on puppy raising.

Since we do see off leash dogs every day, my gold standard is to have an adult dog that is OK with a brief "hello" from another dog (less than five seconds), then ignores the dog and moves on. I've found this to be a reasonable expectation and one that works well in the dog social world as well.
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