furever_pit wrote:These kinds of exercises are designed to expose and stimulate puppies to different elements of the world in the hopes that it will assist in the prevention of fear issues like environmental or noise sensitivities.
Personally, I prefer to see the raw material when I go to check out a litter. The litter that I picked Cairo from experienced most of their firsts right in front of my eyes. I got to see how they reacted naturally (and thus what lies in their genes) without the interference of any pre-exposure. When done this way, these things act as a test for the puppies that exhibit character strengths as well as flaws.
I can't say one way or another but it seems to me that intense "socialization" of the kind that Erin describes could potentially mask noise or environmental sensitivities and potentially affect how puppies are picked and what homes they are sent to.
Again, I am coming from the viewpoint of a working dog. My whole mission is to weed out the weak temperaments and capitalize on the strong. I want to know what the raw dog brings to the table because that's what you breed on.
However, for a litter of rescue pups who come from (if I remember correctly) at least a fearful mother and potentially a fearful father...it might be a good idea. I don't know. I am quite interested to hear what Erin observes with these pups and how her interpretations of the individuals develops over time. All in all, I think it's pretty cool that she is so dedicated to put all that work in.
Obviously not many of us are approaching this from a working dog position like Allison is, which changes things, but I'd be interested to hear different viewpoints on this. Does socialization/habituation mask sensitivities? Or does it prevent them?