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How to Introduce Your New Dog to People

By November 7, 2010March 26th, 2015One Comment

Introducing Your New Dog to People

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A new dog feels bewildered and stressed by all of the changes, so surrounding her with too many people might cause her to cower or nip. So delay introductions to friends and neighbors until the dog has had a chance to settle in. (However, you can start obedience classes with a humane trainer right away.)

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Make introductions one at a time, on leash for control. Exercise and calm the dog before meetings, and have treats handy to shape and reward good behavior. You may want to have the dog on leash so that you can correct immediately as needed. Make sure the visitor is relaxed, and that you convey confidence.

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The dog may want to sniff the visitor first, before any petting. Beware: if the guest is tense, the dog may sense this as a direct challenge. So set the tone with your actions and attitude – wait until you’re happy and relaxed. Read cues from your dog: how comfortable does she appear? Many dogs love new people, while others feel overwhelmed. (Consult the books listed at the end of this guide to learn how to understand and educate your dog effectively.)

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Expect your new dog to engage in behaviors you’ll need to correct, such as growling or jumping on people. Allowing a dog to jump on people is a common mistake, but to avoid exasperation down the line, teach your dog “off” from the start. In addition, don’t let anyone engage your dog in aggressive play such as wrestling, tug of war, or play biting.

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This article is taken from paw-rescue.org/dog-guide

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