04. Puppy Socialization - Should It Wait?

Contrary to historical recommendation, the American Veterinary Society of Animal Behavior (AVSAB) now takes the position that puppies should begin socialization before all their vaccinations are complete. Socialization is critical when puppies are 3 to 4 months old. The group's official statement recommends that veterinarians routinely advise that puppies begin socializing, perhaps in a puppy class, as early as 7 to 8 weeks old. Only one set of vaccinations is important before socialization can begin, but puppies should show no signs of illness and stay up-to-date with follow-up vaccinations, says the AVSAB. Allison agrees with this position and we recommend that you expose your puppy to people and dogs often. To the extent possible, try to frequent parks and dog facilities with high vaccination rates.