The experiences of young puppies affects their brain development which in turn influences their behaviour as they become adult dogs. Socialization is where a puppy learns to recognise and respond to the environment it lives in and stimulus it comes across (other people, other dogs).
The socialization period (3-12 weeks of age) is critical in shaping your dogs adult behaviour and should not be ignored.
Behavioural problems associated to lack of early socialization are difficult to reverse and can lead to fear, aggression and anxiety.
From 3 to 8 weeks of age, your pup should have been socialized by the breeder or rescue group. This includes socializing with people, children and being exposed to new environments and surfaces. This is usually when a puppy will be exposed to new surfaces, different rooms of the house, vets visits, meeting the family and other pets. When your puppy comes home to you between 8-12 weeks, you must build on this basic socialization foundation and continue to expose your pup to new people, places and other animals.
Training and Behaviour
Signing up to puppy socialization classes and training classes will help immensely in pointing your pup in the right direction.
You can start training your puppy at any age, but remember to keep training sessions short to avoid your puppy getting over tired or bored. If you do each session as long as a commercial break, you should be fine.
Training classes are not only important in helping build trust between you and your dog, but they are also a great way of socializing your pup in a controlled environment.