Socialization Regrets - Hungarian Vizsla Forums
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post #1 of 16 (permalink) Old 11-12-2011, 11:25 AM Thread Starter
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Socialization Regrets

So, Oso is coming up to that magical 12 week mark. This whole socialization process is mind whirling for me as a first time puppy parent (at least the first time as an adult).

Oso responds really well to new things right now and I want to introduce him to as many things as possible, yet still stay sane. Does it really help if he just sees something one time?

Any socialization regrets - things you wish you had socialized him to when he was younger?
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post #2 of 16 (permalink) Old 11-12-2011, 12:20 PM
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Re: Socialization Regrets

It's not going to bother him to see something just once.
Does it help it to see it just once? Well that would depend on what it is. If it's a component of training, he'd need to see it more than once. If it's the garbage dumpster at the fish dock, once would be more than enough. ;D
Will it hurt him to see something just once? Probably not.
Let him take things at his own pace, and he'll be fine, don't drive yourself nuts.

Have fun with him!

You'll never beat a lesson into a dog, you just beat desire out.
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post #3 of 16 (permalink) Old 11-12-2011, 12:54 PM
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Re: Socialization Regrets

I think you're probably doing just fine. I know that the "rules" are things like 100 people/new things in a set amount of time, etc. I don't know if we hit that mark with Jasper. Rather, what I've found is that because we did such a good amount of socialization when he was really young, it made him realize that 9 out of 10 times, new things and new people are fun and mean good things.

You also are going to want to pick your battles, some times. I decided it was ok if Jasper didn't like the vacuum cleaner, so I didn't try to "socialize" him with it. If you're trying to prioritize what you should socialize Oso to, I would always pick people first. My breeder gave me a checklist, which I did not completely fill out (ex: he came home in the winter, so there weren't a lot of fairs and carnivals to be going to before he hit 12 or 16 weeks. But I think just making that effort has taught Jasper to be amenable to new situations, people, and objects.

Don't drive yourself too crazy--it sounds like you are a concerned young puppy owner, and that is half the battle. I'm sure you're doing a great job!
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post #4 of 16 (permalink) Old 11-12-2011, 02:57 PM
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Re: Socialization Regrets

Little toddlers : We don't have any kids yet, so we never even thought about exposing Sophie to little, curious 1- 2-3yr-olds. One day, our neighbor came out with his two year old daughter and Sophie was about 5 months or so, and she just started barking at the little girl and wouldn't stop. VERRRRRRY embarrassing... The neighbor knew Sophie was a friendly dog, and we didn't get any "looks" or comments from him. SO, we knew right then and there that was one thing we needed to work on. Now she's fine around little kids

Oso is still very young. He'll have plenty of time to learn about seasons, thunder, snow (maybe?), big dogs, tiny dogs, old dogs, fast dogs, leave-me-alone kinda dogs, people with big hats, and people with long coats, motorcycles, and bicycles, aaaaand so on Good luck!

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post #5 of 16 (permalink) Old 11-12-2011, 04:43 PM
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Re: Socialization Regrets

My 7 month old Oakley was introduced to EVERYTHING since 8 weeks of age.....huge rain storms, vacuum cleaners, walks on a busy road, puppy play group, puppy daycare, water (but does not like), sign spinners (haha), children - many of them, kids on bikes and skateboards, local farmer's markets full of strangers and other dogs......She does well, but stays away from the vacuum. I've been taking her to puppy daycare since she was 8 weeks old but she began drooling excessively (sign of anxiety, nervousness) when I'd take her. I don't know if she just grew to hate car rides, but the drooling never happened until around 3.5 - 4 months. We have taken a break since she contracted puppy papilloma from the daycare (ugh) so we are waiting for that to run it's course and do not want her exposed to other dogs until they are completely gone. Luckily, they are mostly gone at this point.

She was exposed to so much, but as she got older, she chose what she was OK with and what she was not, even though she was introduced. She has met plenty of strangers, but will still bark at people passing by, along our fence line.
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post #6 of 16 (permalink) Old 11-12-2011, 08:47 PM
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Re: Socialization Regrets

The one area I wish we had spent more time with would also be children. She is usually curious, but is sometimes fearful. I get kids to give her treat when I get the chance, but it isn't something we get to work on often enough.

She doesn't stop to be pet by anyone, but I'd love it if she'd slow down around children. We have quite a few fearful kids in our neighbourhood, which is ridiculous because it is a dog haven... but it would feel good to help a kid love dogs, instead of increase their fear with my dogs swift movements.
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post #7 of 16 (permalink) Old 11-13-2011, 07:46 AM
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Re: Socialization Regrets

As others have noted, children are very important to socialization. I think exposure ( as much as possible) to children & different types of people (men, women, different races etc.) Is very important!!
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post #8 of 16 (permalink) Old 11-13-2011, 08:14 AM
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Re: Socialization Regrets

For those of us who have raised children or have had several dogs, we all realize that we will make mistakes. It is literally impossible not to. However, dogs more so than children will forgive you for the mistakes you've made

Take Oso with you when ever and where ever your travels allow. The main reason is to establish and deepen the bond that will become part of your lives. This bond will cause Oso to always want to please you. It will allow the two of you to communicate your needs better. The side benefit is Oso will have a well rounded socialization period. This is a great time for you to try new experiences that you can include Oso with as well. Putting your self in new situations will give you a better appreciation for what he is going through.

Yesterday we went to the store and took Quest with. He spent most of his time in the truck and finally got out at the pet supply stores. He would not have cared either way simply because he was with us. He trusts us to include him in our activities if we can. This trip also reminded me that we never took him into stores when he was young and at 11 years old he is somewhat intimidated by the new experience. As much as he experienced as a pup we still missed introducing him to stores.

Worry less about what you might miss and enjoy the process.

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post #9 of 16 (permalink) Old 11-13-2011, 12:56 PM
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Re: Socialization Regrets

Originally Posted by kellygh
As others have noted, children are very important to socialization. I think exposure ( as much as possible) to children & different types of people (men, women, different races etc.) Is very important!!
Was at out favorite off-leash trail today, and thought I'd come across the perfect opportunity...
I saw a family with 2 boys and no dog, so figured the kids must love dogs and that's why they were walking. Turns out the kids were deathly afraid of dogs, so we just strolled on by while the 10-12 year old climbed up his father.
I guess they were hoping to see very little dogs, but Mischa is under 45 lbs.

Don't boys come with balls anymore?!?!?!? hahahha it is so ridiculous to me. I loved dogs even more as a child than I do now.
The sad part is, I'm always friendly and willing to help because it would benefit us both, but when a kid is scared there isn't much that seems to help.
I only make fun of them afterwards, never before. :P
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post #10 of 16 (permalink) Old 11-13-2011, 05:23 PM
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Re: Socialization Regrets

I try not to read too much into "overloading". Ruby is part of our family and fits in with what we do. Having two boisterous boys (5 and 6 year olds) she doesn't always get rest when she wants it,,,,,but neither do they!! We're quite lucky in some respects that we live in a rural area so to an extent we can plan her activities, but it has to fit into what we want to do. So far she seems a well adjusted dog that deals well with new situations and adjusts to them just fine.

"never argue with stupid people, they may drag you down to their level and then beat you with experience"..Mark Twain

Ruby's d.o.b. 21/6/2011,,Lyharr Grouse Shot d.ob. 7/01/2015
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