It totally depends on WHO your dog is playing with:
- Friend/Family member’s dog that is healthy and vaccinated – They can play at any time as long as it’s in a controlled environment (someone’s home).
- Stranger dog at a dog park or in the neighborhood – After your puppy receives its final vaccinations and the vet gives the okay. I usually tell folks wait at least a week after the final vaccines at 4 months of age for that first trip to the dog park
Why Can’t Puppies Play With Other Dogs Before A Certain Age?
Up until roughly 16 weeks of age, a puppy’s only protection against dangerous diseases like Parvovirus, Distemper, and Leptospirosis is from the vaccinatios they receive. Their own immune system doesn’t full kick in until they reach 4 months old, roughly the same time they start to lose their baby teeth.
It’s at this time that they are at their most vulnerable. Playing with healthy, vaccinated “known” dogs that you trust are well taken care of by people you know is fine. Going to the dog park is a no-no.