Just as with human children, dogs go through developmental stages – from puppyhood into adolescence and adulthood, exhibiting certain typical behaviors. Here’s an overview of what you can expect during the different phases. Your dog’s puppyhood contains the critical socialization period and your efforts here will help your dog grow up to get along well with all kinds of people and other dogs.

Puppyhood – Dogs Development Stages

Puppies are cute and yet they aren’t completely able to express themselves yet. However, your puppy will have the ability to understand your wishes (and in fact, they may interpret them literally!). Your puppy will also learn very quickly that it can get away with a lot of bad behavior, but you will also learn to pick up on these behaviors and correct your puppy. Puppies learn a lot from other dogs. Their most important skills include: socializing (learning to like and trust other dogs) self-control understanding and communicating dog manners dog signals dog body language if your puppy is getting too rowdy, try rewarding him with a toy, so he knows you mean business! “You’re not my momma!” – A puppy learns that other people are temporary.

You’ve Got a Friend

When your puppy is born, you won’t notice many things except for the cute fluffy face and wiggly tails. During this phase, your puppy will look for food, play with other puppies, and enjoy their interactions. In the next stage, the puppy will start to exhibit much more spontaneous behaviors, like playing with other toys or playing and running around in small groups. What You Want: One-on-One Time Throughout the dogs development stages, your dog will learn how to interact and how to express himself. Play is also one of the important ways your dog will learn and grow. Puppies are very curious, so you’ll likely see them exploring the world around them. You want your puppy to play with you on a daily basis and run around in various ways.

Puupy development stages


Your dog is reaching maturity, ready to make his own life choices and secure his family. Your dog should develop a strong, well-rounded personality and confidence level that will allow him to live comfortably with you and other dogs. Dogs mature into adolescence at different rates, but on average you can expect your dog to act the same as he did as a pup. The behaviors you saw as a puppy are still there, but your dog is now more aware of what is expected of him. All dogs go through periods of adjustment as they grow up, especially as a result of age-related changes. This is the time to teach your dog some easy commands (“leave it,” “paw,” “stay,” and so on) and reward him for good behaviors. You can also play games to practice recall and other behaviors.


During the first seven to ten days, you will want to practice with your dog in every possible scenario, with different people, with different dogs, and with different distractions, making sure he gets used to it all. This is also the time you will need to help your dog get used to you and your family. You can do this by giving him lots of treats, playing with him, picking him up, and so on. You should also keep his environment interesting. His environment can vary from day to day. In the beginning, “scent marking”, i.e., marking the house with urine, will be the most common activity. You should also play with your dog during all waking hours, not to be let out of your sight.

Are you ready for a dog?

Your dog’s puppyhood occurs between 4 and 14 months of age. As long as your dog isn’t abandoned, an owner, or neglected, it can grow up to be a happy dog and have lots of loving relationships. You need to be the kind of owner you want your dog to be. A good place to start is reading SLCD2: Your Complete Guide to Dog Training to make sure you know what you’re doing before you bring a puppy home. Depending on the breed of dog, the time varies. For popular Pit Bull breeds, such as the American Pit Bull Terrier, the time ranges from 4 to 8 weeks old. This is the time when most puppies get their first vaccinations, including Rabies. It’s also the time they learn what happens when they’re being held and handled, whether by their parents or other people.

Gaining Confidence – Dogs Development Stages

Dogs can’t express themselves well as babies and toddler, so they rely on their parents for companionship. This is a big responsibility and it can be scary for them to be left alone for extended periods of time – even when they’re home alone! Because of their lack of language, your dog relies on communicating through a nonverbal communication channel – sniffing, raising their head, vocalizing, and staring intently at you for clues to your wants and needs. During this stage, puppies engage in play-fighting and rough-and-tumble play with their own toys or with their family members and other dogs – all the while testing the boundaries of their boundaries and boundaries of other dogs.


Adult Dogs The process of aging is one that we understand a lot more about now than we used to. Just like a human who ages naturally, so does your dog. Not only do we know that your dog’s aging is influenced by genetics, hormones, and bone density, but we also have quite a bit of information about what kinds of changes will take place during the canine aging process. The number of dogs currently living in senior (older than six years) homes is exploding. These older dogs often have trouble adjusting to new people and may react in ways that you may find frightening.

Kidding! I kid! Your dog’s puppyhood consists of the crucial first few weeks and months of her life when she’s still just a puppy. You can’t just call it his or her puppyhood; this isn’t a very long time, about nine or 10 months, but it’s vitally important. After that, your dog should transition to being a dog. Regardless of how much you love and want to be with your dog forever, you need to give them to somebody else. Some people feel they cannot give up their puppy because they are still infatuated with the dog and love her too much to give her up. This is not the case. Puppies become our “greatest friends” during their puppyhood and for a very short time.

dog development stages
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