PRIMARY SOCIALIZATION PERIOD: DAY 20-WEEK 6
The first socialization period begins at two-and-a-half weeks of age and lasts until six weeks of age. This is when the puppies learn how to be dogs, so to speak. They become familiar with all the species-specific behaviors that allows them to live and communicate with other dogs, such as different body postures and vocalizations. They also learn how to bite and what it feels like to be bitten. This is an important lesson for puppies to learn when they are young, so they do not hurt other dogs and people as adults. The mother also teaches the pups very important lessons on discipline and dog-manners. Puppies will also begin to move to specific locations to potty, preferring not to mess up the den or whelping area.
SECONDARY SOCIALIZATION PERIOD: WEEK 7-WEEK 14
The second socialization period is just as important as the first. As the new owner of a puppy, this is the time when you can have the greatest impact on your puppy's social development, since it coincides with the age at which puppies are typically sold by breeders. This is the period when many of the puppy's experiences have the potential to carry over into adulthood. The puppy should be exposed to a few brief and friendly visits from as many different puppy-friendly people and animals as possible. The encounters should be brief, lasting no more than twenty minutes, and end on a happy note. This teaches puppies not to fear people and other animals.