I actually do not like the word socialization because it is too limiting. I prefer to say "introducing the puppy to the world." Most likely your puppy arrives to your home at 8 weeks of age. Vaccinations will not be completed for another 8 weeks (give it or take); and you must be careful of not exposing the puppy to grass or sand areas that cannot be clean and that might contains parasites and other bugs that could make the puppy seriously ill. Thus, you probably wonder how you can introduce the puppy to the world during the first 14 weeks of his life - which coincides with the critical period of introductions. Some ideas, and you do not engage on these for more than 10 or 15 minutes at a time:
1) Loud noises - Puppies need to be gradually introduced to vacuum cleaner, loud cars, etc. Turn on the vacuum in a far away room and began playing with the puppy and a toy and approaching the noise. You can sit in the front of the house with your pup on a leash. Let the pup watch everything that goes by.
2) While you are in the front of the house, a passerby might want to touch your pup. Instead of having the person coming to your puppy, tell the person to wait, and that the pup will go to him/her.
3) You can take the pup for a tour at a pet store. Those places get their floors ultra clean. There, the pup will be able to see other dogs on a leash and at 3 feet (or so) apart. DO NOT take the puppy to make contact with another dog on a leash. See point 4.
4) A well-rounded puppy and dog is the one that can be on a leash, standing or walking, among other dogs and does not react. Reaction could be pulling on your leash to go towards the other dog to play, or barking at the other dog.
5) You can go to the baggage claim area of the airport, and the puppy will be exposed to tall people, short people, people with hats, people with long coats, luggage, wheelchairs, etc., etc. You do not have to do much other than sitting there and letting the puppy watch and smell.
6) Do not flood your puppy - This means that if the puppy does not feel comfortable in any of these encounters, you have reached his/her threshold and you need to back off right away.
1) You must take the puppy to a dog park and let him run with other dogs. Then, I hear the stories such as: my puppy was grabbed by the neck by a dog and now he barks at all dogs; or my puppy has fear aggression, etc., etc.
2) Every time you take the puppy for a walk on a leash, you must let him smell other dogs. This is a terrible idea. Dogs on a leash always behave different than a dog without a leash. Well-adjusted dogs can pass each at 3 feet apart and not react. To accomplish these by teaching your pup that when he/she is on a leash, the attention is on you.
3) Everybody can come and touch the puppy. Really? How would you feel if suddenly everybody comes to touch your hair, jacket, hands? You want the puppy to go to the person if the puppy wants. You have the puppy on a leash by your side, you tell the puppy free, and see if he wants to go to greet this person. If not, do not force the encounter.
I hope this helps to give puppies a good start in the world. Thank you for reading.