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Puppies need “Socialization” to learn to play appropriately with other dogs. According to the American Veterinary Society of Animal Behavior (AVSAB), early socialization is critical and should not be put off until puppy vaccinations are complete:

"The primary and most important time for puppy socialization is the first three months of life. During this time puppies should be exposed to as many new people, animals, stimuli and environments as can be achieved safely and without causing over-stimulation manifested as excessive fear, withdrawal or avoidance behavior. For this reason, the American Veterinary Society of Animal Behavior believes that it should be the standard of care for puppies to receive such socialization before they are fully vaccinated ... (to read the full AVSAB Position Statement about early socialization, go to:

According to the American Veterinary Society of Animal Behavior, In general, puppies can start puppy socialization classes as early as 7 to 8 weeks of age. Puppies should receive a minimum of one set of vaccines at least 7 days prior to the first class and a first deworming. They should be kept up to date on vaccines throughout the class.” To read the full AVSAB Position Statement about early socialization, go to:

The early socialization period is also the optimum time to teach your puppy to:

  • Greet people politely (instead of jumping on them!)
  • Sit
  • Refrain from nipping people (bite inhibition)
  • Accept handling and restraint from veterinarians and groomers (and you!)
  • Come when called
  • Housetraining

DogPACT currently provides private puppy lessons and coaching about early socialization and the do's and don'ts of appropriate socialization. Socialization does not mean inundating your impressionable pup with a barrage of sights, sounds, people, kids, and dogs. And it definitely does not mean the dog park!

Socialization does mean a carefully crafted, well thought out plan to gradually and safely expose your pup to the world around him/her. Click here for more information about socialization.

In addition to private puppy lessons, DogPACT offers occasional small group puppy parties. Please call the office to find out if one is forming now.

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