Welcome to The Boxer Dog Stories

Specs Dogs is a collection of boxer dog stories told from the eyes of Brix, the boxer dog. He is also known as the B-Stud. From these boxer stories, we learn of the joys and pains of puppy-hood to adult life. Along the way, boxer dog and owner learn to strengthen their human to canine bond thru training, playing and just being plain silly. Enjoy!

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Sunday, June 22, 2008

Barkham - A chance for socialization

So today was Barkham and we were excited to enjoy the day outdoors and in the company of dogs and music. It was also a chance for us to introduce Shy (min pin) to new dogs. How would she react when socializing with other dogs?

I'm sure a lot of us pet owners ask ourselves that question. In a previous article I talked about dog socialization and how important it is in developing confidence in a puppy. Again, Shy has a lack of confidence and freaks out at the sight of new dogs. Here's how the day developed.

Barkham wasn't as crowded as a I expected nor did it have the number of dogs I anticipated. Nonetheless, it was a good chance for dog socialization. For the first 45 mins, Shy relentlessly barked at the sight of another dog. We tried calming her down but it was too much for her to handle. We were stressed! We couldn't handle our dog. But something happened as soon as we started to see groups of dogs. It's as if she said, "Great, I can't take all of them on. So I better not make a sound." And she stopped barking. Instead, she became calm and started to sniff the butts of other dogs. (which is a good thing)

She really socialized well with the new dogs. Since going to daycare, her confidence has improved and today was like a breakthough. We left Barkham and headed to another popular location where dogs were. She surprised us by going up to dogs on her own to sniff them out without becoming fearful. At one point, Shy was even able to work on focus exercises with success.

Again, socialization can happen anytime in a dog's life. It is never too late to socialize your dog, but it is more difficult after the critical fear period. Many rescue dogs or stray dogs who never had socialization become great family pets because it is never too late. Who says an old dog can't learn new tricks!

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