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Saying Hello to Summer

June marks the official start of summer, which means tons of festivities, gatherings, and merriment. This probably means your dog will be meeting a lot of new people. Does the thought alone stress you out a bit? Hopefully these tips will help you to feel more at ease about achieving a successful first impression.

  1. Stay Calm and Confident

  • Dogs can sense your emotions

  • Remain relaxed to help your dog feel secure

  1. Use Pawsitive Reinforcement

  • Reward your dog with treats or praise

  • Reinforce good behavior when they meet new people

  1. Allow Gradual Introductions

  • Start with a safe distance in a neutral space

  • Gradually allow your dog to decrease distance but avoid letting the dogs say "hello" while on leash. Let the dogs walk side by side or about 3 dog-lengths behind one another.

  • Observe your dog’s body language and increase the distance if you sense stress

  1. Respect your dog’s comfort zone

  • Don’t force interactions. This could lead to a dangerous and/or traumatic experience for all parties involved.

  • Give your dog space if they seem anxious or overwhelmed.

  1. Give new people guidelines

  • If your dog is expected to act a certain way, let the person they’re meeting know these expectations so the can also reinforce them

  • Advocate for your dog: if your dog does not like being pet certain places, if hats scare them, or if certain actions elevate them, make people aware and be sure they act respectfully. If not, you have every right to remove your pet from this interaction.

  1. End on a positive note

  • If your dog is starting to get overwhelmed or tired and are no longer able to fully listen, try basic commands to allow them to exit the new environment/interaction on a high note

I realize that this isn't a "one-size-fits-all" ordeal, so be sure to tailor your approach based on your dog's needs and take into account advice received from your dog behaviorist and/or trainer.

Comment below what you are most nervous about when It comes to greetings with your dog or if you aren't nervous, please share what has worked well for you In the past to help others.

Well wishes & puppy kisses,



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