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Old 04-20-2014, 10:33 AM
TheBagRat TheBagRat is offline
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Default Too much socialization?

In about a month I am going to be taking 3 puppies home with me. I haven't raised my own puppy before so I'm preparing (worrying) about everything.
I do have some nice advantages though. I work two jobs, one at a vet's office and the other at a doggie daycare so I can potentially bring the pups with me to either job if I need to. Likely based on my schedule, my SO's schedule, and puppy bladder needs I'm going to probably take them with me to daycare about 4 days a week for the afternoon.

So here's my question...if I'm bringing pups to doggie daycare 4 days a week, could that be too much socialization? I don't want them to become stressed, defensive, or pick up bad habits from the pack. My plan is to hand pick special packs for them (dogs that have play-styles I like, and dogs who correct appropriately and fairly for shenanigans) to play with for about an hour or two, then keep the pups separate for the rest of the shift (so they can also get comfortable with boarding places, loud places, relaxing and being calm in a chaotic environment, etc)

Can I socialize them with other dogs too much that it backfires? Does my plan sound beneficial to puppy development? Do I need to stop overthinking every single thing I do?
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Old 04-20-2014, 04:16 PM
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stafinois stafinois is online now
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You are getting three puppies at once?
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Old 04-20-2014, 04:37 PM
TheBagRat TheBagRat is offline
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Yes as a foster/rehome help situation. I plan to only keep one, but will have three until suitable homes are found for the other two.
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Old 04-21-2014, 03:58 PM
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How old are they going to be?

I'm asking just because I would worry about them becoming more dependent on each other than anything else. So depending on how old they are I would be working on figuring out how to do separate play times and interaction time with people one on one.

And just keep in your head that the quality of the socialization is more important than the quantity. At least in my opinion.
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Old 04-21-2014, 05:06 PM
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Maxy24 Maxy24 is offline
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You can't have too much socialization but you can have the wrong type of socialization. Day care can be very scary and overwhelming, dogs can be obnoxious bullies, resulting in a traumatic experience, you want socialization to be neutral or positive. If you can actually hand pick who they are in with and trust whoever will be supervising them to make sure they have a positive experience (and remove them if they are not) then I'd give it a try. It's not really a problem of too much interaction with dogs but a potential problem of bad experiences or even learning bad habits. It's hard to try and modify behavior in a busy daycare setting.

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Old 04-26-2014, 09:37 PM
TheBagRat TheBagRat is offline
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They will be 7 weeks when I get them, which I know is too young in an ideal situation. I hope that having them together (and with my other two well socialized adult dogs) will mitigate the negative effects of leaving mom and the rest of the litter at that age. Thank you for reminding me about how important individual time is. I do not want them developing littermate syndrome.

These are my concerns exactly. I do like my job and I do believe in the power of the pack, but I have also found that the majority of puppies that were "raised" there became...punks, to say the least.
We do still have "special pack" time during the day where we make smaller playgroups for dogs with more specific needs. That would be my plan. My coworker and I have already been compiling a list of dogs we think would make the best dogs to teach puppies about good play behavior. If I was not able to supervise them with my full attention I would be putting them in a dog run away from all the chaos.
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Old 05-15-2014, 02:42 PM
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Doberluv Doberluv is offline
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I agree. You can't over socialize a dog. But you can over whelm and frighten them and that can cause all kinds of trouble. So, I'd say socialize a lot but in situations where you control the meetings and exposures to things/people/friendly, healthy dogs. Associate positive, wonderful things with those encounters, like a favorite treat and lots of praise.

As far as litter mate syndrome...I have two puppies the same age. They're a year old. (Maurice today, Matisse on Sat) And what I've done is we do things together but a lot of things separately. I have another adult dog and each dog gets his own walk where we do some little training exercises...not so much with the adult dog, Jose` but just some one on one time. A time or two a day, I'll take one of the puppies up in my room or outside, away from the other one and work with that one alone. I take Matisse to a handling class once a week and he goes to shows. I've taken Maurice to a show or two, but usually he stays home with Jose` and my ex watches them and my house. So, they've spent days apart as well as snatches throughout the day. Sometimes I'll take one to a store or something and leave the other at home in an ex pen. But sometimes we do things altogether.

They spend some time when I have to go out in the ex pen together. At night, they sleep in separate crates, but next to each other. There are plusses and minuses to having more than one pup at a time I've found. The plus side is they do keep each other company and I had little to no crying from the get go at night time. Barring that littermate syndrome, there aren't too many negatives I don't think...just a little more work I guess. Mine come from two different litters...same breeder though and just two days apart in age.

Anyhow, I had another little Chihuahua that I lost recently... and Jose` when I got these two Poodle puppies and they continued where the litter mates and Mom left off in teaching them more about bite inhibition... they'd tell the puppies off when they got too annoying. Well, Chulita did. Jose` kind of nags and isn't very effective. lol. But they were 8 weeks when I got them. I think 7 weeks will be okay in your case, having other dogs at home. But yeah...I recommend plenty of separate time along with together time. Good luck. You'll need it! LOL. I think you'll be very busy.

eta, Oh gosh, I just realized this is kind an old thread. I hope things are going well.
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