The transition from puppyhood to adulthood can be a bit confusing. Relax. It’s a natural process…
Puppies grow up so fast. One day they’re falling asleep in your lap, and the next day they’re too big to fit! But when does a puppy stop being a puppy and become an adult dog?
Growing up is a process
It goes without saying, but your puppy is unique! While puppy development follows a general timeline, don’t worry if your puppy doesn’t mature at the same rate as its littermates.
In general, puppies become adult dogs between one and two years of age.
But it’s not like they wake up the morning of their first birthday and are suddenly grown-up dogs! In fact, puppy maturation is a process, and it varies from dog to dog depending on size, breed, socialization, and more.
Here are some common sense ways to know your puppy isn’t a puppy anymore:
You may worry when your puppy isn’t jumping up and down and running around everywhere. But it’s just like when we stopped becoming hyper toddlers and grew into adults. Your pup is just growing up like you did.
He or she may also become tired more quickly after playtime. You’ll notice a slight dip in energy levels from when your dog was a puppy.
Dogs can go gray too! Most will show signs around the muzzle, but this doesn’t usually happen until further down the road.
With aging, your pup may start putting on some pounds, in which case you’ll have to pay more attention to his diet.
Diet is one way to distinguish between the puppy and adult year. Puppy food has more calories than adult dog food because growing pups need more energy to fuel their day. As your puppy stops growing, you will eventually switch to dog food for adult dogs. Puppies generally transition into adulthood between one and two years of age, depending upon their size, breed, etc.
• Small Breeds: 9 – 12 months
• Medium breeds: Around 12 months
• Large breeds: 12-16 months
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