How to Socialize Your Doberman

The Process of Introducing Positive Experiences

The process of socialization should start at day one and continue throughout the Doberman’s life. The breeder is responsible for initial socialization by handling the newly born Doberman puppies. A good breeder will continue this process; often by keeping other resident animals such as cats, birds, and small dogs with which the young puppies can interact with.

Additional socialization at this stage of the Doberman puppy’s development also includes interacting with the puppies continuously throughout the day and allowing them to be part of the home where they will experience and be allowed to investigate new sights, sounds, and smells that make up the home. Poor quality breeders will neglect the area of socialization by keeping puppies isolated in a basement or out building.

Socialization must be done cautiously before a puppy is fully vaccinated. There are many illnesses that will harm or kill an unvaccinated puppy. Before vaccination is complete the puppy should be socialized in a closed environment with measures taken, such as the removal of shoes before entering the home to protect him from pathogens.

Once your Doberman puppy is fully vaccinated, the opportunities for socialization are endless. Having guests to your home, visiting friends and family, taking walks around the neighborhood, shopping at dog food stores that allow you to bring your dog, making play dates with friend’s animals, and dropping your Doberman puppy at puppy day care are all excellent ways to socialize him.

It is critical that these attempts at socialization are positive. An unpleasant experience can do the opposite of socialization, traumatization. Particular care should be taken between 8 and 11 weeks of age. This is the fear imprint period. A traumatic event during this stage of psychological development can cause life long phobia.

For vaccinated puppies, there is no better place to begin socialization and training than a puppy obedience class. Here, your puppy will be surrounded by all kinds dogs and people. Also, you will learn how to train your puppy.

Like most things, consistency is important for effective socialization. A good routine is bringing your Doberman to the dog food store when you buy his food. These stores are full of wonderful smells and friendly dog loving people. They will also likely have other canine customers as well as interesting sounding birds. Sometimes there is even a cookie at the checkout. All of this makes a positive experience, especially if experienced consistently.