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Dog Socialisation

Dog socialisation is one of the most important opportunities you can give your dog.  Dogs should be socialised throughout their lives to make for a happy and healthy pooch. Our doggy day care is dedicated to nurturing social development and providing a safe and fun environment for all our dogs.


3 Benefits of Dog Socialisation

3 Benefits of Dog Socialisation

  • Builds Confident Dogs

Confident dogs learn how to navigate the world without fear. It allows them to understand that other dogs aren’t out to attack them. That loud noises won’t hurt them and that strangers aren’t a threat.


  • Prevents Dogs Being Reactive

Dogs can often react aggressively when they are anxious. A fearful dog often attacks first because they think they are about to be attacked. A well socialised dog will understand they don’t need to react like this and will overcome this fear.


  • Gives Your Dog Freedom

Having a well rounded, confident dog gives you the benefit of being able to take it with you wherever you go. Whether it’s on holiday, to the local pub or joining you when visiting friends. Knowing you can trust your dog to behave makes being a dog owner more enjoyable.

Although socialisation can help deter negative behaviour in dogs it doesn’t always stop it completely. Expert dog training is always on hand to help with any behavioural issues you may be experiencing with your dog.

Key Social Development Stages


Dog carer sat on the natural play equipment with cocker spaniel, pointer, golden retriever and labrador

Social development in dogs starts as soon as they are born. Their mother, litter mates and breeders play an important role before any pup finds its new family. This is broken down into 2 stages.

Stage 1 is the primary socialisation period which focuses on socialisation with other dogs.

Stage 2 is the secondary socialisation period which focuses on socialisation with humans.


Stage 1 – Primary / Socialising with Dogs

French bulldog puppy sleeping at doggy day care

Stage 1 – Primary / Socialising with Dogs

Time Period: 22 to 49 Days (3 to 6 weeks)

After the initial 3 weeks of life puppies will start to learn they are a dog.  The most important part of this stage is that the pup is kept with his littermates and mother during this time period. 

The social play that occurs during this stage is key.  The puppies will showcase playful, aggressive and often sexual behaviours between themselves, with their mothers telling them when they have gone too far. This natural dog behaviour is needed for them to understand who they are.


Stage 2 – Secondary / Socialising with Humans

Doggy day care team member giving a puppy cuddles

Stage 2 – Secondary / Socialising with Humans

Time Period: 50 to 84 Days (7 to 12 weeks)

The secondary socialisation period begins when a puppy is ready to leave its mother and littermates to start a new life. This is typically around 7 weeks old. 

At 7 weeks dogs are very curious and it is now they will learn how to react to humans. By socialising your puppy to as many different types of people you will be giving it the best start in life. Once first vaccinations are given you can also start exposing them to different environments outside of the home. Puppy socialisation checklists are a great tool to use to help you cover all bases.


What happens next?

What happens next?

Although the key stages are over it is vital to keep socialising your dogs as much as possible.

 For their first year of life they will continue to grow mentally and physically so exposing them to as many different people, animals and places as possible will help you build a well rounded dog. There are many places you can go to socialise your dog including dog socialisation classes and doggy day care.  

Puppy Socialisation with Puppy Pre School


Puppy Pre School is a programme specifically for puppies from the age of 12 weeks.

With our expert knowledge and experience, we have created a structure that combines puppy socialisation, enrichment and positive reinforcement. 

If you would like your new dog to have regular playtime with puppies of a similar age, puppy pre school is the ideal option for you.


Dog Socialisation at Bruces Doggy Day Care


Dog socialisation is at the heart of what we do.

At Bruce’s we start every day with group sensory activities aimed at engaging the nose and mind of your dogs, to set us up for a day of fun.

Our weekly dog enrichment activities ensure there is always something keeping your dogs busy. We offer plenty of free playtime to nurture those all important doggy social skills as well as giving time to rest and enjoy some bonding with our expert dog carers. We finish the day with a warm hometime rinse so all of the dogs in our care leave happy and tired. 

If you want to understand more about what doggy day care is, and how it could benefit you, let us explain.

“Socialisation is normally at the top of owners lists and rightly so, it’s an important skill for dogs and owners. Socialising on lead can sometimes problematic because dogs can’t run away if they want to. If we want our dogs off lead to socialise then we need good recall, which is often not the case early on when socialising is most important. This is where doggy day care comes in! Doogy day care will address all of these issues, allowing dogs to have the freedom to engage with new dogs in a controlled environment, off lead, with known dogs who lead to more predictable outcomes.”

James – Expert Dog Trainer

Doggy day care with a difference

Doggy day care with a difference

With over 14 years of experience under our collars and a team of dog experts, Bruce’s continue to strive to learn about dogs and what makes them happy.

Our award winning doggy day care unleashes happiness and enriches the lives of dogs (and their families) with our magical combination of passionate expertise and social fulfilment.

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