Things to be aware of
When socializing dogs, don’t have a Quantity over Quality mentality. Who cares if your dog meets 30 dogs if they’re all rude jerks? That will only reinforce any nervousness they may have, or create new phobias around dogs.
Be your dogs bouncer, and don’t let them be over taken by rude obnoxious dogs.
Why we don't socialize lecture
Most of the reasons I hear from clients about why they don't socialize their dogs have to do with safety. Which is a very important consideration. But make sure you filter for rude and or uncontrollable dogs. If you can't find a good group of dogs, contact a reputable trainer in your area that can assist you.
Introducing Small Dogs Lecture
When introducing your dog to another dog, take the necessary precautions to ensure safety.
Things I like to have in place:
Good control of my dog
Some relationship with the other dogs, and the understanding that they can be controlled
Physical control over my dog, when small dogs get scared and run away, it can basically cause a riot. Other dogs will instinctively try to chase, and are likely to make very bad decisions.
Introducing Other Dogs
Socializing with dogs of different sizes isn’t always as big of a deal that we may think. There are some things I like to watch for, mainly other dogs behaving rudely, and not respecting the other dogs space, or demands to be left alone.
If the dogs I’m thinking of introducing my dog to aren’t the most socially acceptable, I always air on the side of caution, and refrain from having them interact.
Always go for a Quality over Quantity mentality when it comes to socialization.
Socializing Neutral Dogs Lecture (access to neutral dogs)
Socializing your dog is serious business. There can be some real pitfalls with this, so if you can’t find dogs that are balanced/neutral and under good control, get a hold of a professional in your area to assist you.
Continuing Socialization Lecture
Socialization is not an event. It is a continuing process that you should be engaged in throughout the life of your dog.