2017 APDT Annual Educational Conference & Trade Show

WE09 - Observations on the Socialization of Dogs

Oct 18, 2017 3:30pm ‐ Oct 18, 2017 5:15pm

Standard: $20.00


The current dog world promotes and supports a vague notion of 'Socialization' that encourages dog owners to have their dogs meet many strangers during their puppyhood and to play with other puppies in order to grow up friendly with other dogs. There are few specific details on how to do this, and even fewer adjustments for differing temperaments--from fearful to bold, sociable and non-sociable. What does playing with other puppies teach our puppies? Are some of the socializing techniques we promote outdated for the modern world--a world in which there are more dogs, more multiple dog households, more play between dogs and seemingly less between owner and dog, less access to nature, and what's seems to be a growing number of problematic temperaments? What do we do if we get our dogs at the age of five months (past the apparent critical socialization period)? Or at a year? Are there still training and socialization techniques that might help dogs? By showing video footage of some of the current practices I will show behaviors and offer observations of what I believe can be fallout from current practices, or owner-interpretation of vague recommendations. I will also show video footage of ways to escort dogs through the universe and 'socialize' them in such a way as to thwart the trend of owners letting their leashed and unleashed dogs descend upon any dog they encounter. I wish to challenge some of the current socialization recommendations and offer ways of encouraging new puppy owners and new owners of dogs of all ages to raise dogs that find their owners most important and fun, are confident enough to navigate society, feel safe in their environments, find a purpose/work, and are hopefully able to cope with whatever the world throws at them.


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