When is a Puppy Considered an Adult Dog?

Puppies grow up so fast. One day they fall asleep on your lap and the next day they’re too big to hold! But when does a puppy stop being a puppy and become an adult dog?

Read on to learn more about the puppy aging process and how to tell when your puppy is no longer a puppy.

Growing up is a process

It goes without saying, but your pup is unique! Although puppy development follows a general schedule, don’t worry if your puppy isn’t maturing at the same pace as its littermates.

Usually, Puppies become adult dogs between one and two years of age.

But it’s not like they woke up on the morning of their first birthday and suddenly became fully grown dogs! In fact, maturing a puppy is a process that varies from dog to dog depending on their size, breed, socialization, etc.

Sexual and physical maturity of the dog.

Most dogs reach sexual maturity about six months. Sexual maturity is the physical stage at which a dog can father or give birth to puppies. Having puppies can seem very mature, but if you’ve ever spent time with a six-month-old pup, you know he’s not fully grown yet.

A puppy can be too physically mature before they grow up. physical maturity This is when your pup reaches adult size, which depends on the breed. Generally, small breeds are fully grown by 12 months of age, while large breeds can take a year or two to complete their growth.

In fact, if you’ve raised a puppy, you’ve probably felt the frustration of having a physically mature animal that doesn’t really know how to control its body.

“Zoomies” are a whole new experience when your pup weighs 50 pounds.

emotional maturity of the dog

via flickr/ncbob

emotional maturityOn the other hand, a dog behaves like a dog and not like a puppy. As with all other aspects of puppy development, the process of emotional maturity takes place over time. You may not see it, but one day you will realize that your pup has become a dog.

Emotional maturity coincides with your pup’s nightly hormonal surges. As puppies grow and sexually mature, they may misbehave, test boundaries, and “get in trouble.” But between the ages of one and a year and a half, your pup will settle down and his adult personality will begin to emerge.

Puppies mature at their own pace, so pinpointing the exact point at which a puppy will reach adulthood is difficult. Take care as your puppy grows signs of emotional maturity:

  • Listen and respond appropriately to the training.
  • Easier to install
  • “Listen” and respond to social cues from other dogs

Sometimes the answer to the question “when is a puppy not a puppy anymore” is simply “when you realize he’s grown up”. It depends on your particular pup and can happen over time.

When should you switch from puppy food to dog food?

Feeding is one way to differentiate between the puppy year and the adult year. Puppy food contains more calories than adult dog food because growing puppies need more energy to fuel their day. When your puppy stops growing, he will eventually switch to adult dog food.

In general, you should start switching to adult dog food when your puppy has stopped growing. The exact “when” depends on the size of your dog:

  • Small breeds: 9-12 months
  • Medium Breeds: Around 12 months
  • Large breeds: 12-16 months

But remember, just because your pup has stopped growing physically doesn’t mean he’s fully mature emotionally and mentally.

How do you tell a dog’s age?

If your dog came from an animal shelter, you may not know exactly when he was born. Wondering how to tell if your new puppy is really a puppy?

Young dogs tend to be more active and energetic. As dogs get older, they slow down. But even an older adult dog can have puppy-like bursts of energy! The best way to tell how old your dog is is by looking at the physical signs of aging.

First, look at your teeth. If your new puppy has shiny white teeth that seem a bit small for his jaw, he may be less than 16 weeks old. As adults, dogs have mouths full of permanent teeth. Click here to learn more about how to age a dog by looking at their teeth.

Other physical signs of aging are:

  • Grisaille around the snout
  • Dull or pale eye color
  • Low energy or limp

For dogs that ride between puppies and adults, it can be difficult to estimate their exact ages. You can always ask your veterinarian to determine your dog’s age.

The take-away sale

Still wondering if your pup is an adult dog? Here is a checklist:

  • sexually mature
  • physically grown up
  • emotionally mature
  • sensitive to training
  • Other dogs see and react to it like any other adult dog.

Some puppies become dogs as young as one year of age, and some dogs take up to two years to reach full maturity. If you are unsure of your dog’s age, consult your veterinarian.

One way to ensure your pup grows up to be a well-adjusted adult dog is to keep them socialized throughout their puppy life! Click here to learn more about puppy socialization and consider booking a dog sitter or dog sitter to help your pup find his way in the world.


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Source : rover.com

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