Puppy of the Month

Bear is a 6 month-old Labradoodle.


Favorite Activity:
Joining the family for rides in the van.


Life's Ambition:
To wear all the shoes she has stolen.


Favorite Socialization Spot:
The children's bus stop.


OS Certified Trainer™:
Patti Hight of WOOFS! Dog Training Center LLC.

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Socialization Sleepovers

Travel is central to modern life. We leave town on business, go on road-trips, visit family, attend conferences, or treat ourselves to weekend getaways. Almost all of us travel somewhere sometime. But dogs, from nature’s side, are not well prepared for alone-time. They’re highly social creatures, hard-wired to react with anxiety to sudden separation, especially if they’ve never experienced it before.

You need to be able to travel without worrying that your dog is traumatized by your absence—and your dog needs to be comfortable when you’re away.

That's where socialization sleepovers come in handy.

Puppies that experience time away from home when young are much better able to adapt to being separated from their family later in life. They learn they can indeed be okay without you. Not only that, but with all the new people, places, and situations involved, a sleepover is a great socialization opportunity in general.

You should arrange for at least 2 sleepovers before your puppy reaches 4 months of age. Either:

  • Send your puppy to a friend’s house—with the Socialization Safety Guidelines and toolkit.


  • Send your puppy to a boarding facility or private pet sitter you trust.


  • Arrange for at least a two-night stay to give your puppy time to settle in and relax.
  • Don’t make a big deal out of your departure when you drop your puppy off. Keep your cool and ask your pet sitter to give him lots of yummy treats or engage him in play while you leave.
  • If your puppy has a hard time dealing with new people, places or dogs bring some familiar items from home like his crate and favorite sleeping spot. Some yummy chewies are also a good idea.