October 5, 2022
Why is it important to socialize your pet?
Socializing your pet allows them to get to know new people, animals and situations. It will allow them to get more comfortable with these things. Socialization will also reduce stress and anxiety for your pet. Our pets learn from their experiences, so if they have not been out to meet new people, other animals or experience new situations, then they have a hard time knowing how to react when presented with these things.
How to socialize your pet?
It is important that socialization is a positive experience and not overwhelming. If your pet is nervous or scared in new situations, then you will need to go slow. Take short trips to new situations. Keep rewards with you to help your pet have fun.
Let your pet experience a variety of new things. This includes other animals, new people (both young and old), riding in cars, and going to new places (the vet, pet stores, training classes, etc).
When to socialize your pet?
Socialization is not just important at the puppy and kitten stage. It should continue for the life of your pet. They should be allowed to experience new places and people throughout their life. Remember to always keep it positive. Over the past couple of years, we have seen a lot of pets that have stayed home with their owners. Now that owners are getting out more, their pets don’t know what to make of these new situations and can be quite nervous about them. Although this makes it hard to introduce your pet to new things, you should continue to try. Make visits short & positive by using rewards throughout the new experience.
Puppies and kittens that are not fully vaccinated should be kept away from public parks until they have had their complete vaccine series. This is usually after 16 weeks of age, but you can ask your veterinarian if you have questions. Young animals should still be allowed to experience new people, animals and places. You can have friends or family over to your house or visit their house. They can also bring healthy, vaccinated pets to visit. You can carry your pet into the vet office or pet store. They can ride in your car and even participate in some training classes.
All pets need socialization, so make sure to speak with your veterinarian if your pet has high anxiety or fear during socialization to see what can be done to help your pet.
Feel free to contact us at Pawtown with any questions or concerns!