As a child growing up in Ecuador with a menagerie of animals, dogs were our constant companions. I grew up in a small village by the sea and for us to see a dog being walked on a leash was something very weird. Socializing dogs? We didn’t know what that meant.
Once I got my first dog, a challenging handsome staffie, and started to go to training classes, I realized that dogs getting along with other dogs, socializing, was something a lot of dogs have difficulty doing. I also figured out that many pet parents didn’t know how to properly socialize their dogs.
When a dog stays with us, I send pictures to the pet parent so he can see his furry kid. A couple of years ago I had a pet parent say to me, “You sent me a picture of my dog sitting right next to another dog. How did you do that? She doesn’t like to sit next to other dogs.” I was surprised by what she said. A couple of other pet parents also said similar things.
How did I do it? I made sure that they had plenty of exercise, structure, discipline, and boundaries. For some dogs, being next to another dog, like the above picture is close to impossible. If you don’t know how to work with your dog, do what I did years and years ago, find a trainer that can help you understand and learn about dogs. Living with a dog should be enjoyable, not stressful.