If you have a very young puppy, it would be in your best interest and truly in the puppy’s best interest to do the following:
1. Play a television close to where the puppy sleeps (visual stimulation);
2. Play classical music close to where the puppy sleeps (auditory stimulation);
3. Desensitize to paw, ear, tail, etc. handling EARLY AND OFTEN – you can even put a q-tip between each toe and roll it around (tactile stimulation);
4. Open umbrellas around the puppy often;
5. Record and play sounds of children playing, laughing, squealing around the puppy often;
6. Throw a can full of pennies or screws, close to the puppy often;
7. Sit down and play with the puppy and then get up and run away – then squat or sit back down so the puppy wants to run to you (to begin the desire to come to you for recall training);
8. Encourage the puppy with praise when it follows you, which they will naturally do.
Between 3-6 weeks is when you can start to introduce recorded sounds of gunshots and thunder to a puppy to decrease the likelihood of fear of sound later on!
Introduce your puppy to as many people as you possibly can by the time they are 12 weeks old! 100 people of more is the goal!
INTRODUCE THE SOUNDS OF DOORBELLS, KNOCKING ON DOORS, DROPPING POTS AND PANS, ETC. EARLY ON AND ASSOCIATE WITH POSITIVE THINGS IF YOU SEE EVEN THE SLIGHTEST SIGN OF FEAR OF THOSE SOUNDS Fun fact, you can teach a 5 week old puppy to sit and down. 🙂
If breeders would do these things (and much more) before they ever give the puppies up to adoptive parents, we could avoid so many aural and visual phobias.