Puppy Socialisation in Lockdown

16th Feb 2021


Tip #1

Allow your puppy to watch the world go by at a safe distance. Sit with them on a park bench or in the car boot, and let them watch people, traffic and other animals moving past.

 

Tip #2

The positive of people needing to be 2m away from you is that it allows you to socialise your puppy at their pace. For shy puppies, it allows them to acknowledge that people are non-threatening. For more confident puppies, it means that it will reduce the chance of jumping up becoming a habit as they will not get the opportunity to practice this behaviour.

 

Tip #3

Your puppy must learn to be comfortable and safe being left alone in order to avoid separation issues. Short periods of isolation will need to be practiced even if you cannot leave the house often. Make sure you leave the room without them for short periods. Try to leave your puppy in their play pen or crate for a short while with a tasty chew or Kong.

 

Tip #4

Get your puppy used to different textures and surfaces within your home. Initially put out some different items (cardboard boxes, different textured floor mats, sand pit, shallow tray of water… anything that is safe for your puppy) and surround them with treats. Let your puppy approach and investigate in their own time.

 

Tip #5

Take your puppy out in the car when you go on your essential journey (food shopping etc). Make the motion of the trip a positive experience by settling them in a suitable and safe part of the car with a tasty chew or kong. You can also regularly take them out to your parked car on the driveway and reward them with a tasty treat for being gently lifted both in and out.

 

Tip #6

Create a positive association with being handled. Get your puppy used to being handled at home. Start off with really gentle, slow stroking, being careful of any sensitive areas. Build up to gentle brushing and towel drying, along with ear/mouth/paw examinations. Always follow any of these things with a tasty treat.

 

Tip #7

To avoid any future noise sensitivity, download sounds from YouTube and play them on a low volume for your puppy. Sounds such as traffic noises, crowds, people talking loudly, children playing, animal noises, other dogs barking etc. Do this whilst your puppy is doing a fun activity, such as eating their dinner or playing with a toy.

 

Tip #8

Being at home means you have more time than ever to house train your puppy. Encourage them out for frequent trips to the garden in order to set them up for success.