Puppy Diaries #9 Mastering the Perfect Puppy-Human Social Interaction

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With door greetings somewhat under control, there was the challenge of guests spending time at our house. Sommer would feel instantly that these people were her very best friends, and would want to jump up on the couch to sit on top of them, something that I’m accustomed to, but which is uncomfortable for a guest who is trying to have an appetizer and glass of wine and hold a conversation with a dog sitting on them. Again, the “beep” collar worked well in terms of sending the signal of “stay on the ground.” And in case trying to monitor the situation became too much for me, I would banish her to our lower level. That wasn’t ideal since she didn’t learn anything from being banished, but sometimes it felt like the easiest way to handle things. Trying to be a good host, keep up the conversation, serve food and keep a vigilant eye on a puppy was far too overwhelming. I wanted to enjoy myself, too!

Sommer may be overly enthusiastic about people, but she is equally eager to please, so that’s the strength I play to when guests arrive. The fact that she loves people is something that was bred into her, so I want to encourage that in a positive way as she grows up. I don’t want human interaction to be a negative experience. As time goes on, I’ll continue to refine her greetings and guest etiquette – maybe one day, when she’s better able to control herself, “go to bed” will work. At nine months, we’re not done with training and will keep on working at it. You really can teach an old dog new tricks!

Lessons Learned from My Vet or My Trainer

  • Your pup will behave better if you are able to stick to a routine in regards to training, socialization, and exercise. It will make your life as stress-free as possible as you progress through the teenage months!
  • Your pup is still growing! If you have a small dog like ours, she might be nearly 90 percent of her full-grown size, but if you have a larger dog, she might only be around 70 percent of her adult size, with lots of growing still to come.
  • Those gangly legs and big feet will soon be a thing of the past as your pup grows into them. At this age, your pup’s coordination will be visibly improving and her energy levels are still high.

My Favorite Articles

Puppy Diary Series: Sit, Stay, Play

Join our resident Pup Mom on her puppy parenthood journey in our Puppy Diaries Series.

Puppy Age: 0-8 Weeks
Puppy Diaries #1: Deciding To Get A New Puppy (0-8 weeks)
Puppy Age: 8-12 Weeks
Puppy Diaries #2: Picking Up Our New Pup and Bringing Her Home (8-12 weeks)
Puppy Age: 12-16 Weeks
Puppy Diaries #3: Caring For And Training our New Pup (12-16 Weeks)
Puppy Age: 16-20 Weeks
Puppy Diaries #4: First Firsts For Our New Pup (16-20 weeks)
Puppy Age: 20-24 Weeks
Puppy Diaries #5: Our First Pup Emergency (20-24 weeks)
Puppy Age: 24-28 Weeks
Puppy Diaries #6: To Spay or Not To Spay (24-28 weeks)
Puppy Age: 28-32 Weeks
Puppy Diaries #7: First Year Costs – Myth vs. Reality (28-32 weeks)
Puppy Age: 32-36 Weeks
Puppy Diaries #8 Mastering the Perfect Puppy Social Interaction (32-36 Weeks)

About Puppy Diaries

Puppy Diaries is an ongoing series that explores the journey of pet parenthood, from making the decision to get a puppy, to bringing a puppy home, to the joys and struggles of training, and beyond. Laura Tiebert, our resident Pup Mom, is an experienced nonfiction writer and first-time puppy parent who lives in Minnesota with her husband, two sons and a new puppy.


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