Why You Should Press "Paws" on Doggy Meet and Greets During Walks

This might sound counterintuitive at first, but there is good reason why it's a good idea to hold off on letting your pup greet other dogs and people during walks at a young age. Grab a puppuccino and let's dive into this unconventional piece of advice.

We all know that socialization is crucial for our dogs, but there's a time and a place for everything. And on-leash greetings during walks? Not the ideal situation. Here’s why:

1. Focus.

When your dog is young, walks are the perfect opportunity to teach them leash manners, focus, and impulse control. If you let them meet every dog and human they come across during their walks, they'll start expecting it, and their excitement levels will go through the roof. The result? A dog that's more interested in the next potential playmate than in learning how to walk nicely on a leash.

2. Boundaries.

By allowing on-leash greetings, you're inadvertently teaching your pup that there are no boundaries when it comes to interacting with other dogs and people. This can lead to a dog that's overly friendly (and we're talking "jumping-on-strangers" friendly) or one that develops leash reactivity. Not the kind of energy we want our dogs to develop when he sees a person or dog or something he wants to investigate.

3. Safety.

Not every dog (or human) out there is as chill as we would like. Allowing your young dog to approach others during walks can be risky - you never know how the other party will react. Being cautious and avoiding unnecessary encounters can save you from potential trouble.

So, what's the alternative? Off-leash playdates with trusted humans and dogs or even reputable puppy socialization classes to expose your young pup to new experiences in a controlled and safe environment. This way, you can let them sniff, play, and socialize to their heart's content without jeopardizing their leash training or safety.

Got any questions or need help with training your pup? Give us a call!