Puppy Genius! Manners, Enrichment and Socialization
Veterinarians and trainers agree that early, positive socialization is crucial for a puppy’s development. For owners who want the socialization value of a puppy class but are wary of exposing their puppies to the group environment before their vaccines are complete (*), this course brings puppy socialization and enrichment to you.
This course is designed specifically for puppies under 16 weeks of age, taking into account their unique neurological needs. The major focus is on teaching puppies to calmly and confidently explore new items, people and experiences. Specific exercises vary depending on the dog’s needs and environment, but will include skills such as:
- Getting comfortable with their leash, collar or harness
- Walking on strange surfaces
- Preparing for bath time, brushing and body handling
- Enrichment games with scents
- Learning to love strange people
- Exploring strange objects
- Getting comfortable with crates and car rides
The course also includes tips for surviving your dog’s puppyhood, such as:
- Preventing destructive chewing
- Learning not to nip
- Potty training help
- How to set up a socialization plan
Puppy Genius is not an obedience course, but it does include brief introductions to puppy management behaviors such as leave it, focus, puppy-level come when called and potty on cue. This class is designed to lead into our group or private classes.
(*) The current position statements of the majority of reputable veterinary and training associations suggest that pet owners begin attending socialization classes before their puppies’ vaccinations are complete. However, many local veterinary practices still advise their clients to wait until after the entire vaccination protocol is finished (usually at 16 weeks, after the critical socialization window has already closed). Force Free Fido is not licensed to give medical advice and will support your vet’s recommendations. This class is designed as an in-home alternative to group puppy socialization classes for people who have been advised not to expose their dogs to the public until after their entire course of vaccines.