Should I socialize my chihuahua?
Unless you NEVER plan on taking your chihuahua outside your home you are going to need to socialize your dog. PetSmart has some great classes, especially for puppies. They cost around $90 for a six week session and include clickers and some promotional products.
Reasons to socialize your chihuahua:
- To prevent hostile attributional bias against other dogs
- To minimize barking at other dogs and people
- To increase their tolerance for children
- To decrease anxiety when around new dogs or strangers
- To decrease their tendency to bite as a method of protecting owner
Here is a link to The PetSmart Training:
When should I start socializing my chihuahua?
The earlier the better. The critical time period is between 6 and 20 weeks. During this age ensure they are interacting with different dog breeds, enroll in a socializing class, go on daily walks, and meet other chihuahuas!
What if I can’t afford a socializing class?
Not to worry! Just find any dog in the neighborhood and plan a meet up group. Taking your chihuahua for regular walks will also give him/her regular opportunities to meet and socialize with other dogs.
Chihuahua Meetup (see link below) is a free online network to locate other chihuahuas in your area. Arrange for a puppy play dates to provide socializing opportunities. And better yet – it’s FREE! You can even start one in your area if a group has not yet formed.