Stages Of Puppy Development From Birth To 12 Weeks Old

Stages Of Puppy Development From Birth To 12 Weeks Old
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Everybody knows that the puppies need more care than the older dog. Therefore, how to give the puppy the proper care is one of the biggest concerns of every dog owner. If you have a basic understanding of the puppy development from birth to 12 weeks old, it will help you take a better care of your little furry friends. This article will help you broaden your knowledge about this topic by the detailed puppy growth week by week pictures and information.

The puppies grow and change very fast about size, weight, and appearance during the puppy time. That’s why you should follow the puppy development week by week carefully to know if your puppy has a good growth. There are 5 main stages of the puppy development from birth to 12 weeks old including the key milestones.

Stage 1: Newborn Puppies

Some of the typical signals of puppies in this stage are blind, deaf and toothless. Moreover, the newborn puppies are unable to regulate body temperature or defecate on their own. This is the critical time for the puppies to be with their mother and the other littermates because the mother pup takes responsibilities of keeping them warm at the best body temperature. Moreover, puppies get used to being petted when their mother licks them to keep them clean and stimulate their defecation.

Puppy Development From Birth to 12 Weeks
The newborn puppy is sleeping on his mother’s leg. Source: Flick

Please notice that the puppy separated from the warm nest can easily die because of the low body temperature. That’s why the puppies will cry to alert their mother if they are not warm enough.

Stage 2: From Birth To Two Weeks

This is the neonatal period when puppies spend most of the time (up to 90%) sleeping. Once they awake, it means they are hungry and ask for nursing. It is an instinct that puppies can use their sense to find out the nest and the mother’s nipples. The birth weight is usually double the first week. In this stage, the puppies start crawling over the littermates and around the mother. This action will help them strengthen the muscles for the development of the upcoming stages.

Puppy Development From Birth to 12 Weeks
So adorable puppy in the garden. Source: i.ytimg

Stage 3: From Week Two To Four

It’s time for the puppies to move on the transitional period. There are a lot of physical changes in this stage that remark the milestone of puppy development.

– Opening the ears: about 14 days old
– Opening the eyelids: from 10 to 16 days old
– Be able to stand: by 15 days old
– Practice the first steps: by 21 days old

Puppy Development From Birth to 12 Weeks
The puppies have just opened their eyes. Source: zimfamilycockers

In general, these great changes are the signals that puppies start learning things surround them, especially by visual and hearing. They will improve their own sounds such as grunts, yelps, whines, and barks. At the third week, puppies also begin to learn about their canine society and be a bit independent from the mother. You can see them play with the other littermates or try the food from the mother dog’s bowl.

Stage 4: From Week Four To Twelve

This is the socialization period. One of the most important changes in this stage is puppies start weaning and eating the solid food. The weaning usually completes by the eight weeks old while the puppy teeth begin to erupt when they are five to six week olds. In this stage, puppies can control the defecation while sleeping.

Puppy Development From Birth to 12 Weeks
The weaned puppies start eating the milk and solid food. Source: dogsaholic

In addition, in the period from six to eight weeks old, puppies are easier to learn and accept others as a part of their family. It’s better to introduce puppies to the other pets in your house.

Stage 5: From Week Eight To Twelve

This stage is an important part of development when puppies start exploring the environment. In the other words, this stage is a fear period that puppies need to go through. It means once they see new things, they tend to react with the scary instead of curiosity or interest. It’s no need to be worried because it is just the normal way for puppies to learn to be more cautious when strange things happen. It’s a part of the growth that helps them improve the skills, temperament, and life experience.

Puppy Development From Birth to 12 Weeks
A group of adorable puppies. Source: wall.alphacoders

Actually, puppies can be adopted once they are able to eat well on their own. However, it’s better for them to stay with the mother dog and the other littermates until they are at least eight weeks old. Because interaction with the canine breed can help puppies complete their instinct such as bite inhibition, how to adapt to canine communication and other valuable life lessons that nobody can teach them except the mother dog.

In summary, this is the puppy development chart with the detailed puppy growth stages size information. You can look at this picture to know more about the changes in the puppy development from birth to 12 weeks old.

Puppy Development From Birth to 12 Weeks
The puppy growth rate chart. Source: thehappypuppysite


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