Our Advanced Pack Socialization Classes Can Help Your Dog!

by | Mar 10, 2022 | General Information

Can dogs be shy? Absolutely!

Every dog has their own personality. Their behavior reflects that personality plus the environments in which they’ve lived. Sometimes, that means your dog exhibits shyness, acting timid and fearful around unfamiliar people, dogs, and situations. This behavior ranges from mild (e.g., needing a little reassurance) to severe (e.g., debilitating). It may be caused by negative experiences in the dog’s past, or it’s simply their natural, introverted personality. 

No matter the cause, any shy dog can benefit from dog socialization classes (or puppy socialization classes). In today’s article, we’ll talk about shyness in dogs, then give you a summary of the Advanced Pack Socialization Classes we offer that can help the dog move past their fears, gain confidence, and learn to understand and react appropriately to social cues.

What Makes a Dog Shy?

Is Shyness Always a Bad Thing?

Not always. It depends on what’s causing it. For example, some dogs act shy because of negative experiences, such as abuse or neglect. Here, shyness is a coping mechanism that might not translate well for a happy life in the human household.

Other dogs have a naturally introverted personality. There’s nothing wrong with that! You can help them become more comfortable when they occasionally find themselves in a big event situation, but there is no reason to force them to become extroverts.

In either situation, socialization classes can be helpful.

Removing Puppies from the Mother Too Soon

Puppies should never be removed from their mothers before seven or eight weeks of age. Mama Dog is their first trainer, from whom they learn the most basic dog behavior, language, and manners. Mama’s lessons and playing with their siblings teach the beginnings of socialization.

However, being removed too soon creates behavior problems. They will have a hard time understanding pack relationships and the body language of other dogs.


Dogs, especially puppies, left in isolation for too long, do not learn to socialize with people and dogs, nor the rules of pack behavior among dogs. They do not know what is expected of them when around people. Without exposure to a variety of people—children, adults, people of different sizes, etc.—they will not know what to do when they encounter visitors or when they travel with you.

Without knowing the rules and expectations, they cannot build confidence. So they may find a safe place to hide or sit next to you pressed against your leg instead of venturing out and enjoying themselves. In extreme cases, some may even become aggressive to protect themselves if they cannot get away.

Does Breed Matter? 

There aren’t any scientific studies to support this idea. German Shepherds, for example, are a top breed for police and guard dogs, but that doesn’t mean that some of them can’t be shy. Some breeds may be more independent, such as Greyhound, Husky, and breeds used as guard dogs. But being independent does not mean being shy.

Single-Dog Syndrome

Several years ago, we noticed in our obedience classes that dogs in a single-dog household tended to display more behavior problems, such as running away, food aggression, and picky eating habits, compared to dogs from multi-dog households. Parents with a single dog need to provide plenty of opportunities for socialization that a dog misses when they’re the only one in the house. This means providing companionship and exposure to other dogs outside the home. Or you can always get a second dog!

Pack of happy dogs

Advanced Pack Socialization Classes

We at K9 Basics offer our Advanced Pack Socialization Classes, a series of classes to help your dog overcome shy behavior and become more confident in social situations among dogs. These classes tap into their natural social instincts. In addition, they learn skills that reduce the fear and stress of social situations. The end goal is a balanced dog that can enjoy interaction with other dogs.

Advanced Pack Socialization, a program revolutionary in its approach and results, is ideal for dogs with severe socialization issues that cannot function in doggy daycare or other socialization venues. This program helps dogs that otherwise might not ever run with other dogs.

Trainers provide the ability to read other dogs’ body language and learn the ins and outs of communicating with other dogs. There are times when we step in and create a little bit of space and movement to help the dogs have healthy and safe interactions.

There’s not much difference between socializing puppies and adult dogs. We put them, ranging in age from five months to nine years, together, and they’re all closely monitored by the trainers for interactions. However, this is not the case for younger puppies, who should not be put with a group of adult dogs. There are special classes for younger puppy socialization. Those that were separated from their mothers too early can start learning the body language of other dogs.

The program includes a mandatory initial evaluation, determining whether the dog can come right in or training needs to happen first. We provide pre-training if they cannot safely enter the social arena yet. Some dogs in this class have been conditioned to wear a muzzle to remove the liability factor. Allowing dogs with aggressive or reactive tendencies in a group with other dogs teaches them to control their aggressive behavior. As a result, they can begin to enjoy socializing with other dogs.

A Parting Reminder

Every dog has a unique personality based on a unique set of experiences. Between nature and nurture, their behavior patterns are formed. Some dogs act shy to cope with adverse circumstances, while others are just your basic introvert, perfectly happy to stay away from the big, loud, unfamiliar things.

Our Advanced Pack Socialization classes can benefit both types of dogs. For the former, they learn to disassociate the unfamiliar from their fears. For the latter, they learn that occasionally, when encountering uncomfortable settings, they can have the confidence and skills to interact happily until it’s time to go back to their preferred environment.

For more information on our Advanced Pack Socialization classes, contact us at info@k9basics.com or 866-592-2742.