Puppy Socialization at 8 wks. - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 30 (permalink) Old 05-28-2009, 03:34 PM Thread Starter
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Puppy Socialization at 8 wks.

Does anyone have any suggestions on where to take an 8 wk. old puppy?
It seems like Petsmart is out, as are dog parks ect.

Can you walk a puppy around the block at 8 wks.? Or should he stay inside? I've heard that 8-12 weeks is crucial but if you can't take them to these public places and don't know too many other people with dogs, what do you do? Are parks ok? I only know one couple that own 2 dogs. My boyfriends parents own a 2 year old GSD but i'm not 100% sure she wouldn't eat the puppy as a nice little snack. Either way that GSD is a few thousand miles away at the moment. I'm not sure socializing a pup with just 2 dogs would be enough?
I live in the Ft. Myers, FL area, in case anyone has any puppy friendly dogs that can help me socialize the pup.

Denali Fofali WGSD - Born 3-25-09
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post #2 of 30 (permalink) Old 05-28-2009, 03:37 PM
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Re: Puppy Socialization at 8 wks.

I took mine to petsmart, but they were in carts, not walking around on the floor.

Angela

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post #3 of 30 (permalink) Old 05-28-2009, 03:50 PM
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Re: Puppy Socialization at 8 wks.

I also took my pup to Petsmart and other stores and just let them ride in the cart-put a towel down in cart for them.

Also took them to the dog training club I belong to - rule at the club during this period was "feet up." As long as someone was holding/carrying him, it was fine. And everyone wanted to hold and carry him so that wasn't an issue.

I also walked up and down the block. Just kept him on the sidewalks and in the street as we were able to do that easily where I live.

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post #4 of 30 (permalink) Old 05-28-2009, 03:54 PM
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Re: Puppy Socialization at 8 wks.

I took Sam anywhere and everywhere I could. At 8 weeks, she wasn't through with her shots, so I just carried her. Pretty easy back then. I also have a good friend with dogs so I took her over there and let her play. It is challenging to find people/places but well worth it.

<span style="color: blue">The more people I meet the more I like my dog.
-Author Unknown</span>
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post #5 of 30 (permalink) Old 05-28-2009, 03:55 PM
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Re: Puppy Socialization at 8 wks.

Some training facilities have "puppy" classes that are more about socialization than anything. Maybe you have one in your area?

8-12 weeks is crucial -- but so are weeks 12, 13, 14, 15, etc.... It's great to get a handle on all this and do lots of socialization, but if it's a question of your pup's health, remember that there are many more opportunities to socialize once her immunity is strong!

--Rhena, owner of
Juno, White German Shepherd, female b 10-15-2008, adopted 01-05-2009

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post #6 of 30 (permalink) Old 05-28-2009, 03:56 PM
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Re: Puppy Socialization at 8 wks.

Are there any basic obedience type classes in your area?

Most places that offer such things also offer a 'puppy kindergarten' class, which is like the utmost basic level of obedience training. And because its only for puppies, you don't have to worry about your little guy being overpowered. The one I took Mulder to always allotted the pups time after class to socialize with each other.

After he was a little older, I'd say around 12 weeks or so, I started taking him to the local dog park, and let him interact with friendly dogs and people.

I recommend getting the vaccine for Kennel Cough beforehand if you do this, though.

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post #7 of 30 (permalink) Old 05-28-2009, 04:02 PM
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Re: Puppy Socialization at 8 wks.

I take my puppy to petsmart, place grounds, and walks around the park.

From the age 8-10 weeks old, I pretty much kept him home and brought people over to meet him and I had some friends bring there dogs over to meet and play with him. I also brought a lot of kids around him so he would be kid friendly.

He's 14 weeks old and loves kids, is intersted in most dogs, and is okay with most people. He's barked at a few dogs and people, but never at a child.

~Rachel
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post #8 of 30 (permalink) Old 05-28-2009, 04:08 PM
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Re: Puppy Socialization at 8 wks.

There is a critical socialization period at 8-12 weeks so it is important to get a lot of socialization at this time. However it is also important that it is controlled socialization to make sure you keep everything positive, because there is also a fear period at about the same time.

Here is a good article about socialization which discusses what you should be doing during each socialization period, including suggestions of places to go:
http://www.dogscouts1.com/How_to_socialize.html

and there is more info here:
http://www.dogscouts1.com/Puppies_section.html


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post #9 of 30 (permalink) Old 05-28-2009, 04:12 PM
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Re: Puppy Socialization at 8 wks.

Well, at 8 weeks, the pup can still contract disease since I personally wouldn't take him/her anywhere near petsmart or meet other dogs who you are unsured of if they're upto date on vaccines. Bare in mind of its immune systems at that early age. At 12 weeks is when the final vaccines are injected and their body immune systems builds up enough to fight. But you can always ask friends to come over for a visit, neighbors whom you know the dogs are clean and have upto date vaccines.. etc.

IMO, I would just have my family and relatives over for socialization at this early age until all shots are done with for the 1st year. But that's IMO only..
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post #10 of 30 (permalink) Old 05-28-2009, 04:16 PM
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Re: Puppy Socialization at 8 wks.

I took Brady everywhere and anywhere
we went to NH to my friends house on the lake, petsmart, friends houses
always went for rides

Dawn
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