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In case you haven’t heard, we’re delighted to be opening our hearts and home to a new family member, a German Shepherd puppy named Seger. They say it takes a village, so I’m hoping you can help me raise him to be a productive canine citizen. Consistency will help him understand the rules of the game, so I’m sharing some of my expectations for him with you:

Saying Hello

It’s true, puppies are so stinkin’ cute that everyone just wants to squish them, but some dogs are more interested in social interactions than others. And some don’t appreciate being squished. If you’d like to interact with Seger, please wait to see if he’s interested in having a conversation with you before engaging him.

If he doesn’t approach you don’t take it personally. Puppies have a lot of things on their minds!  It just means he’s not interested at the moment. Please be respectful of his space and time rather than approaching him for an interaction unless he approaches you first. For some puppies, uninvited interactions can lead to avoidance of people in the future, not something I want for him.

Picking him up with encourage jumping, so please don’t. If he approaches you pet him when all four feet are on the floor, and don’t pet him when he’s jumping on you. As a future therapy dog it will be important for him not to practice jumping.

Giving Him Treats

Treats are for training. Using them to foster social connection isn’t necessary and can become an indecent proposal if a dog isn’t truly interested in having a conversation. Since you’re not training him to do anything, he won’t need your treats. Authentic connection is preferred.

Loose Leash Walking

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If you see him on a leash, please don’t draw his attention. It will encourage pulling, something I never want him to think is necessary or appropriate.

That’s pretty much it, except for don’t wake him up and thanks in advance for your patience if I need to interrupt class to take him out to potty 😊

And if helping me raise my puppy isn’t your thing, I’m OK with that. I’d just ask that you not interact with him during this critical time.

Looking forward to sharing his puppy kisses with you!