We currently offer free puppy socialisation party’s at the surgery, every Thursday morning between 10 & 11 am
This is a great opportunity for your puppy to meet and play with other puppies of various breeds and sizes, and to have that social interaction within a safe environment, especially if you have no other dogs at home or within your family for your puppy to interact with.
The parties are run by our nurses, who will be on hand with plenty of tips on; nutrition, behaviour, preventative health care and more socialising advice, but feel free to ask them anything that’s on your mind.
To attend, your puppy must have had their first injection, be between 8 and 16 weeks of age and be fit and well, and he or she may bring a maximum of two family members along for the fun.
The parties must be pre-booked with our receptionist. Give us a call, email or pop in to register your interest, and we will ring you back to confirm your place.
If you cannot attend our parties but would like more advise on socialising, please see the section below. Alternatively, our nurses will be happy to help, they can offer free consultations if you would like to come to the surgery and get to know us, or simply phone 01443 430944
Puppy Socialisation and why it’s so important.
Socialisation is a process that exposes your puppy to as many different experiences of the world as possible.
It is important to really work hard to socialise your puppy between week 3 and 12, these weeks are the most vital as these are the weeks that puppies will approach anything without caution, after the 12 week mark anything that they have not seen they are likely to be cautious of so this is your time to shine!
How much is done between these weeks will often dictate how your dog copes with life as an adult dog, we all want a dog that we can take anywhere and isn’t scared of people, other dogs or the hoover! Puppies who have not been exposed to the world are often frightened and anxious, which in turn can lead to behavioural problems.
It is not a process that will give you the perfect dog but it will definitely build a happier confident dog that deals with other people, dogs and environments with ease and that is what we aspire to as owners.
Taking your puppy out and about is really the best way forward (once they have settled in with you).
Unfortunately, the vaccination course does not fully protect your puppy from infectious diseases until the age of 13 weeks, (or later depending on the age the puppy started the vaccination course), and as a general rule, we often start the course for our puppies between 6 & 8 weeks.
We now know that keeping your puppy in the house for a number of weeks can have a detrimental effect on their ability to cope with later life. Whilst we cannot guarantee your puppy will not pick up a disease when they are out and about, there are ways of going out and about safely with your puppy between the first vaccination and the second vaccination, here are a few simple rules to follow.
- Carry your puppy everywhere
- Do not let your puppy interact with un-vaccinated dogs.
- Do not take them to dog parks, or areas where a lot of dogs go.
- Do not let them play in streams or rivers.
However, if you do not want to take a risk there are other ways of socialising your puppy indoors.
Of course, your puppy can use your garden (essential for toilet training) just make sure no other un-vaccinated dogs have access, and you clean up any cat mess (if any).
The Dogs Trust have a brilliant free download called ‘Sounds Sociable’ and it is designed to help puppies adapt to their new environments. The download covers a whole manner of sounds like; traffic, children and fireworks, it also comes with a free booklet on how and when to use the tracks. The download also has tips on how to settle a puppy into your home, how to deal with house training, play biting, and most importantly how to settle your puppy at night.
We would also recommend randomly shaking plastic bags or foil, having children around, wearing hats and glasses, even dancing around like idiots. These are just small things that can really help. If your puppy seems scared, try to ignore this behaviour (this can be really hard, but be brave!). Showing attention only reinforces that there is something to be scared of, dogs understand actions, not words… such as ‘it’s ok’.
Small trips around the block in the car are also really good, not only will your puppy get used to the traffic, the sound and the motion of the car, he or she won’t be under the impression that being in the car means coming to see us.
Also, a trip to a relative or friends house would be great as long as there are no un-vaccinated dogs at the house, interaction with different people and environments are an added bonus.
Should you need any other puppy advice please visit our dog advice page.
For your convenience we have put the ‘Sounds Sociable’ links below, just click to download.
Sounds Sociable downloads