The Best Reindeer Games for Holiday Guests: Puppy Edition!

Boy oh boy! We are fast approaching the Christmas Crunch Countdown and if you are expecting guests in your home it is a good time to review the Best Game Ever for people who have not met your wonderful Habibi Bear pup. No, it is not Hide N Go Seek, or Tag. In fact, you may be surprised at what the best Holiday game is regarding your loving little Habibi guy or gal! Do you give up? Drum Roll, please! The best Holiday game your guests can play with your Habibi Bear puppy is  Ignore the Puppy!  Yes, you read that correctly! One of the most effective tools in your dog mom and dog dad toolbox is teaching your guests to ignore your puppy completely when they first come inside your home. 

Let’s explain why this is essential for providing your puppy with the stability and security that will foster a confident, well-adjusted Habibi Bear dog.

First and foremost, for those guests who are brand new to your home, “ignore the puppy” allows your precious Habibi Bear guy or gal to be in charge of the tone, speed, and duration of contact. Because the guest has been instructed to actively ignore the puppy for a fair amount of time, the puppy gets to approach, engage and withdraw at their own discretion. Your puppy gets to decide how much contact it wants and how long the contact is for, and with whom they want to engage with. When you allow your puppy to be in charge of such important matters, you are building and strengthening the bond of trust that you both have been establishing. You are letting your puppy become comfortable with the guest or guests on their own terms, and the more comfortable they are, the more confidence they will display. If your Habibi Bear puppy is sitting nicely for guests, with no jumping or begging, make sure you reward their Super Pup behavior with treats. Better yet, allow the guest to be the Santa of Treats and we guarantee once that association has taken place, your puppy will never forget! It is a real win-win for both guest and pup, who has now made a new friend for life. 
If you aren’t sure if your puppy is comfortable or not, here are the signs that your Habibi Bear puppy is overwhelmed or frightened :
  1. Stiff Body
  2. Low Ears and/or Back
  3. Half Moon or Whale-Eyed
  4. Tense, Closed Mouth
  5. Panting, Licking, Drooling, Yawning.

Please, if your puppy is exhibiting any of these behaviors around your holiday guests, please, please, please remove them from the area and place them in their puppy zones, the gated off area where they have free reign, or their luxurious doggie condo crates, where they can decompress and recalibrate, allowing their little brains to move out of a state of overstimulation and back into regular calm and curiosity. 

It is always important to have good boundaries in place with our guests regarding our puppies because they are still developing and polishing their social skills.  Sometimes, it only takes one unfortunate interaction to create a fearful pup, and months to undo a dog and human episode of missed signals. 

We know people have the best of intentions, but because our puppies do not have the gift of speech, we have to be their voices and advocate for them. We love advocating for our wonderful, loving Habibi Bear puppies, the Original Teddy Bear dog, and advocating for you, our Habibi Bear Tribe. We are always here for you, cheering you on.