How to Raise a Friendly Puppy

The overall plan is to slowly introduce your puppy or dog to noises, people and places, and make the experiences enjoyable.  It doesn’t do any good to expose your puppy to, say, a room full of very loud children who pull on the puppy’s ears.

As you expose your puppy or dog  to noises, places and people, praise or reward the puppy for any appropriately friendly response.

If your puppy or dog responds fearfully to anything new, remove your puppy from the cause, but avoid ‘reassuring’ him or her, which is actually praising the puppy for acting scared.

Don’t allow any unwanted behavior while you are socializing. So jumping up, biting you or the leash, or barking should all be cut short by ending the socialization exercise and moving away from what is causing that behavior.

Keep in mind that puppies must be kept safely away from areas where un-vaccinated dogs may have been until their last series of puppy vaccinations are effective.

If your puppy lives in a quiet room, set up a CD player to play normal household noises: doorbells ringing, vacuum cleaners running, doors slamming, toilets flushing, music playing.

Take car rides (using a crate is best), visit friends, pet supply stores, and, once vaccinated, parks, beaches, outdoor cafes, the vet’s waiting room, everywhere and anywhere dogs are allowed.

Try to introduce your puppy to at least one new person a day for the first few weeks. A store clerk, the mailman, your neighbors, your neighbors kids, friends, family, strangers walking down the street.