Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: Lake Tahoe Area
Make sure to read the thread on "Rethinking Popular Early Socialization" Lots of good stuff... this from Carmspak, who I believe is a breeder of GSDs
early socialization is very well studied and documented in the classic Scott and Fuller Dog Behaviour the Genetic Basis.
Unfortunately the windows are not "pliable" . This was the result of 20 years of testing , built on Konrad Lorenz , Trummler , Tinberg's observation of critical times in socializing.
What Scott and Fuller demonstrated is that there does not need to be an overbearing amount of attention or stimulation -- more is not better, correct and sensitive to the individual is better . They worked with 5 breeds and did find that different breeds to respond differently.
quote "It's interesting to note that a lot of dogs (herding breeds especially) seem to notice when we're trying too hard at socializing/trying to build a positive reinforcement. And MANY of them with anything less than stellar nerves, get weird about it. This, IME, can CAUSE fear and issues in them"
was a remark in the study !! good observation.
I think this is one way dogs , since we are talking GSD, can be damaged by that pressured aim to socialize. We have a lot of posters who are shocked when their very , almost too friendly puppy loved by all , becomes a problem , excused as a passing fear stage , when in reality insecure and potentially fear aggressive , or in avoidance.
The "pop" advice is grab that dog as soon as you get him and socialize , meet , (how many?) strangers in a set time.
Is there a disconnect . You have a breed which by nature should be stranger neutral . Puppies are attention magnets . People will come and "maul" the precious wecious pup - strangers are encouraged to feed the dog . So what happens . The pup is no longer a pup but a dog -- hardly the same reaction . Dog now reacts on his impact on the stranger who is taking a wide berth , backing up , acting like prey , stimulating another internal drive within the dog . Is this being honest with the dog.
young dogs are being flooded without any consideration to that pups mental age .
some young pups are over handled , over stimulated in the bio-sensor , without feeling .
Lack of early socializing can result in maladjusted dogs. On the other hand it is very important how you go about socializing and training or the same results will be the unintended consequence.
Dutch Shepherd - Ptygo (Tee-Go) de las Flores
Rescue GSD - Freyja (Husband's Dog)