Play is an important social activity. Through play puppies like children learn how to act and behave appropriately with other dogs. We have put this leaflet together in order to help you understand what dog play consists of and how best to ensure your puppy learns to play appropriately.
Through play puppies experiment with different noises, postures and ways of interacting with other puppies. All of this is entirely natural and healthy, although it may sound and appear rough and aggressive to us humans.
Below are some examples of play and play styles so you can see how your puppy is developing his or her ability to interact successfully with other dogs. Please bear in mind that this is not an exhaustive list and your puppy may not perform all of these behaviours.
What we look for in appropriate play is lots of role swapping – i.e. one puppy chases, then they swap and the chaser becomes the chase and so on we also look for exaggerated movements. We will always be on hand to advise you what is and what isn’t appropriate. If play is no longer appropriate and fair we don’t reprimand or shout at the puppies. We will instruct you to calmly and quietly remove one or both offending puppies from the play, giving them a “time out”. Once Puppy has calmed down we allow him or her to re-enter the play session. This will allow puppy to learn self-control.