- 1 Anti social dog breeds: the importance of good socialization
- 2 Developmental disorders related to socialization
- 3 Behavioral disorders related to socialization
- 4 Intra-specific communication disorder (between dogs)
- 5 Tips for socializing your puppy
- 6 Anti social dog breeds: How to re-socialize your adult dog
You are considering the adoption of a dog and wondering what are the anti social dog breeds? You must realize that the sociable aspect of a dog’s personality, whether it is young or already adult, is much more education driven than it is inherent in the dog breed.
Therefore, an important socialization work is inherent in the good balance of your new (future) companion. In this article, we are going to focus on your dog’s socialization with his peers and will offer you our most valuable advice to make sure everything goes well.
First of all, it is essential to understand why socialization is important and especially what are the problems that can cause a lack of socialization.
Socializing your dog means allowing him to live more serenely the new encounters he will make in his life. It means helping him develop and strengthen his dog codes so that he can respectfully interact with his fellow human beings. It’s anticipating how to avoid fights and therefore injuries and teaching his dog to communicate with his fellows and manage his interaction with other animals and humans.
Then, of course, socializing your dog well helps prevent many disorders, either developmental or behavioral. A developmental disorder is a problem with the development of the puppy, so it is very difficult (if not impossible) to solve it, whereas a behavioral disorder is caused by a multitude of factors that it is quite possible to correct and rebalance with time, patience and consistency.
This is a disorder caused by an environment with poor stimulation between the third and twelve weeks of the puppy (age during which it is important to give him a maximum of good experiences so he can feed his “hard disk”). Hence the importance of choosing the right breeder for your puppy because remember that a dog should not be adopted before he is 8 weeks old. During that period, the socialization work must then be handled by the mother and the breeder.
This is a disorder caused by the mother’s absence from the puppy’s environment. This has a huge impact on the puppy’s socialization as it is normally up to the mother to teach her pups the basics of social behavior, at least for the first 4-5 weeks. Clearly, here, the puppy goes to his adopted family without having learned to “speak dog”.
This is when a puppy learned to “act like a dog” in the initial weeks of his life, especially through his mother, siblings, etc. However, past that period, he was completely excluded from social interactions or lived too many negative experiences.
Intra-specific communication disorder (between dogs)
This disorder is very often caused by the owner who did not let his dog communicate with others. This is typically the case with handlers of small breeds who walk away with their dog whenever they see another dog arriving.
As we can see the lack of socialization skills is not coming from so called anti social dog breeds but rather from the quality of the education provided to the puppy. As a preventive measure, choose carefully the kennel from which you adopt your puppy. Choose a breeder for whom socialization is essential before putting puppies into adoption.
When you adopt your puppy at 8 weeks old, you still have around 1 month to work on his socialization. So don’t wait before offering your puppy friendly encounters. Favor sociable dogs on the one hand, of course, but also dogs that can be patient enough and sufficiently balanced to assimilate your teachings, when necessary.
Have a reassuring attitude with your puppy to build his confidence and stability. If you are afraid, he will be afraid too. If you are confident, so will he be because he will trust your state of mind.
Of course, don’t expose your dog to all types of encounter or at all costs. Control and anticipate encounters, if you see that your puppy is uncomfortable and prefers to run away from contact, respect that! Seek to understand and work on it if necessary. You can also hire a professional dog trainer to make sure you socialize your puppy properly.
Don’t keep your puppy inside until he has had hisvaccine booster! This can have serious consequences for your puppy’s future behavior. Of course, avoid risk areas (where all dogs go to defecate for example), but continue to offer controlled, positive and regular exposure to congeners.
Finally, respect your puppy’s pace. Let him rest and don’t become a socializing machine. And yes, “over-socializing” isn’t good either. Your puppy needs to manage the process.
If you are adopting an adult dog that has behavioral problems with its peers, the first thing to do is to learn about its past. Did the dog go through negative experiences or suffered from a lack of socialization? Try to have as much information as possible to act accordingly.
In this kind of situation, I always recommend contacting a dog training and behavior professional because every case is different and a tailored approach will be required. Attempting a rehabilitation on your own is very risky because you make the problem worse, unless you really know what you’re doing.
But while waiting to call in a professional who will give you personalized advice adapted to your situation, here are important tips:
- Get your dog used to wearing a muzzle if he is aggressive towards his fellows, for his safety and that of others, but also for your peace of mind.
- Control all your dog’s encounters, don’t introduce him to an unfamiliar dog while waiting to find out how it’s going to turn out.
- Generally, it is better to favor meetings between dogs of different sex.
- The educational bases must be reinforced: walking on a leash without pulling, static positions, recall, renunciation, etc. This allows you to have control over and manage your dog when he is in a state of excitement (positive or negative) at the sight of another dog.
- Establish rules of life and limits at home so that your dog has a framework and sees you as a trusted master.
- When walking, if your dog reacts, move away from the source of his excitement and play with him, diverting his attention, so that he assimilates the presence (however distant) of another dog to something positive.
- Do not scold him when he reacts, it will equate the presence of another dog with a reprimand. This would only make the problem worse.
- Above all, don’t stop taking your dog out on the pretext that he is not sociable. If necessary, favor places with weak stimulation, but continue to stimulate him physically and mentally. The socialization work is always easier if the dog is in a good mental and physical condition.