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Great article Betsy. Hobby breeders seem to like to keep their pups until 12 weeks of age. Is it because this is a more optimal time to evaluate confirmation and decide which pups are show prospects and which are going to pet homes or is it because the puppy needs that time for contact with its littermates and socialization? Do most breeders adequately socialize their puppies before they go to their new homes?

I've often heard you can't let your pup be around other dogs until it's had all its shots, which is at about 16 weeks of age. Some say don't take your pup for a walk until then so as not to expose them to where other dogs have "gone potty.

Another factor is the requirement by breeders that prospective puppy buyers have a fenced in yard. I certainly agree with not letting dogs run lose but how many dogs actually get to see the outside of their fenced in yards?

I think we need to rethink how and when we socialize puppies and wouldn't be suprised if more dogs are euthanized as a result of inadequate socialization as pups, than die as a result of exposure to infectious disease.

The two pups I got at 8 wks loved being around people and other dogs. The one pup I got at 12 wks was returned to the breeder for being fear aggressive. :(

[ July 28, 2004, 03:04 PM: Message edited by: Barbara Winters ]
 
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