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Main Puppy Growth Stages to Consider When Purchasing a Dog


Puppies are undeniably adorable, and it can be tempting to want to take one home as soon as possible. But it’s important to consider what growth stage your puppy is in before you purchase them.

Some people prefer puppies, while others prefer adult dogs. There are many different pros and cons to these two choices, with each one working for different people. Thus, it’s important to decide what’s best for you and your lifestyle.

Generally, puppies are undeniably adorable. They’re small, cuddly, and full of energy. But, they also require a lot of time and patience. Puppies need to be potty trained, which can be a frustrating and time-consuming process. They also require to be socialized, which means taking them to puppy classes, the dog park, and playdates with other pups.

Adult dogs, on the other hand, are typically already potty trained and socialized. They’re also usually calmer and less destructive than puppies. However, they may have some bad habits that you’ll need to work on, such as excessive barking or chewing. Plus, they may not bond with you as quickly as a puppy would, so you’d have to wait for them to be your best friend.

To get more specific, it’s best to get a peek into the four main growth stages for puppies, which are comprised of the newborn stage, the pre-adolescence stage, the teenage stage, and the full adolescence stage.

Each stage has its very own unique set of characteristics, and it’s important to be aware of these before you make the decision to purchase a puppy. Continue reading to learn more.

Newborn Puppy

The first growth stage is the newborn stage. This is when the puppy is firstborn and is typically the most expensive. The newborn stage is also the shortest stage, lasting only a few weeks. During this time, the puppy will be very small and need care.

As a newborn, your puppy will be unable to see or hear. Their sense of smell will not be as developed yet. However, they will be able to recognize their mother and littermates by scent. They may be born with a full coat of fur, but it will be very fine and soft.

During the very first few days of life, your puppy will sleep a lot – up to 20 hours a day! They will also feed frequently, as their tiny stomachs can only hold a small amount of food at a time. As they grow a little older, their sleeping and feeding patterns will become more regular. Here are some more specific milestones in the newborn puppy stage:

Four Week Old

At four weeks old, your puppy will start to become more active and alert. Their eyes and ears will start to open as they begin to explore their surroundings. They will also start to play with their littermates and will start to learn important social skills.

At this stage, your puppy will still need to be fed frequently, as its stomach is still very small. They will also need to be toilet trained, as they will not be able to hold their bladder or bowels for very long yet.

Eight Week Old

By eight weeks old, your puppy will likely start to look like a miniature version of its adult self. Their coats will get thicker and coarser as they lose their baby teeth. They will be much more active now and will be able to play for longer periods of time.

At this particular stage, your puppy will be able to be left alone for short periods but will still need regular meals and toilet breaks. They will also need plenty of exercise and playtime, as they will have a lot of energy to burn!

Twelve Week Old

At twelve weeks old, your puppy will be approaching the next stage. They will be almost fully grown and will have most of their adult teeth. They will be much more independent now and can spend longer periods of time away from you.

It’s best to recognize that your twelve-week-old pup will be susceptible to internalizing the habits and events, so this period can be a catalyst for how they will grow up further in the future. Be sure to care for them in case of any painful experiences.

Pre-Adolescence Pup

At 24 weeks old, your puppy will be more or less fully grown and pre-adolescent. They will have all their adult teeth and will be sexually mature. They will be much more independent now and will be able to spend long periods away from you.

This is quite a crucial time for your puppy as they will be learning a lot about the world around them. In addition to that, different signs of puberty can start to be much more apparent. For instance, both male and female dogs can start to show some slight resistance and aggression towards pups of the same gender.

Teenage Pup

Any teenage puppy will be full of energy and will want to explore the world around them. They may also be more independent now and may not want to listen to you as much, which can make certain commands tougher to carry out.

This level of obedience is a normal part of your puppy’s development, and it’s best to extend your patience and coax your dog to be more compliant. Be sure to continue to give them plenty of love and attention, as well as socialize them as much as possible to learn how to interact with other dogs and people.

Full Adolescence Dogs

Once your dog becomes fully adolescent, usually around 18 months old, it will be at its full size and weight. At this stage, they will have their adult coat and will have a fully established personality from how they’re raised.

Ideally, they will be more settled and will have a better understanding of what you want. This is usually when you see the best obedience training results. Adult dogs will be more relaxed and will focus better on learning new tricks and commands. If you have not yet gotten your dog into obedience training at this point, it’s not too late to get started.


Try to narrow down and decide on the right puppy growth stage choice for you. Especially when you consider your lifestyle, schedule, and preferences to help you make the best decision for you and your new pup.

Seeking puppies for sale? Puppygram and our knowledgeable staff will assist you in picking your perfect companion, helping Americans through the selection process and delivery in the United States from our stores in Indianapolis, Indiana. Get in touch with us today!