Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: South Carolina
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You have tons of options for socializing your puppy, you just have to be a little creative. Someone with more experience may correct me, but I believe your number one concern is to keep your puppy away mainly from places where other dogs and wild animals may have relieved themselves. If you have a concern, just carry him around mostly.
When Duncan was a puppy, I took a pocket full of treats and he went everywhere I could think of. Your ideas were great, take a folding lawn chair and sit in front of the grocery store or Target. My favorites were the public library and to my kids' activities like dance class and the bus stop. I asked anyone who showed any interest in him to give him a treat when he performed "sit". He is very, very good about not jumping on strangers and I credit this to his early training to sit for strangers.
My breeder told me any experience that takes him outside the norm is beneficial.... going through the carwash, running errands, anything. All of these are good and the treats help make them positive experiences. Just remember to bring a towel and plastic bags to clean up any messes and chew toys so he's not chewing on you or your car. This can be a good time to let him get used to riding in a crate in the car. This is great for safety and so you can leave him in the car while you go inside places he can't. A puppy brought home in the cooler months has this advantage over a summer puppy.