when do dogs stop growing

When do dogs stop growing?

Puppies appear to grow up so quickly. They start as little fluffy balls of cuteness and develop into devoted canine companions in what seems like the blink of an eye. However, not all dogs mature simultaneously, with smaller breeds maturing far more quickly than larger counterparts. This is because larger bones and joints require more time to grow and mature.

Puppies, particularly those of a bigger breed, have amazing food and exercise needs while growing. When the puppies are completely grown, you’ll know exactly how big or little they are, allowing you to purchase all of the necessary dog supplies in the precise sizes, such as crates, collars, beds, and protective coats. That’s why it’s crucial to know when your puppy will stop developing.

So let’s discuss when do dogs stop growing…

Puppies: How long do they grow?

Although all pups are considered adult dogs once they reach the age of one year, they continue to grow in height and size while their bones are still forming, which can take anywhere from six to twenty-four months. The size of their skeletons dictates how tall they will grow as adults.

According to Dr Jerry Klein, DVM, AKC’s Chief Veterinary Officer, the long bones in a puppy’s legs grow from two unique areas called growth plates. “During puppyhood, when new tissue is being created, the growth plates are rather flexible and squishy.”

The new tissue that your dog develops hardens into bone as he matures. “When the growth plates stop creating new tissue and become calcified, they are said to have ‘closed,’ which signifies the bone has achieved its final size,” explains Dr Klein.

Keep in mind that, just like humans, your puppy will continue to acquire fat and muscle even after the bones are fully developed.

when do dogs stop growing

When Do Smaller Puppy Breeds Reach Adulthood?

When Do Smaller Puppy Breeds Reach Adulthood

Puppy breeds of small and medium-size mature swiftly. According to Dr Klein, those tiny puppies complete grow at roughly half the age of their larger siblings. “By the time they reach 6 to 8 months of age, little breeds have stopped developing on average.”

Medium-breed puppies may take a little longer to mature, reaching full size around the age of 12 months.

When Do Puppy Breeds of a Larger Size Stop Growing?

when do large dogs stop growing

Because larger bones require more time to mature, a larger dog takes a little longer to achieve full adult size than a smaller dog. Dr Klein explains, “Giant breed puppies grow until they are 12 to 18 months old.”

Large to giant breeds dogs typically weigh 70 pounds or more as adults. Many enormous puppies, such as mastiffs, can achieve full adult size as early as 24 months.

However, some large dogs breeds, like the Irish wolfhound, may not reach their full potential until they are 36 months old.

Small dogs typically reach their adult size by 10 to 12 months old. Toy breeds, such as Yorkies or Chihuahuas, may stop growing at only 6 or 7 months old.

This is because the bones and joints of small dogs are much smaller and don’t require as much time to grow and mature. Therefore dogs stop growing when they reach their age of maturity.

When Do Purebred Puppies Reach Adulthood?

If you’ve recently purchased a purebred AKC-registered puppy, the breeder can estimate your dog’s size and growth rate based on their experience with other members of the puppy’s family tree.

“First and foremost, purebred dogs are noted for their predictability: size, coat, temperament, and so on,” explains Dr Klein. “While there will be differences among members of each breed (and each litter), in general, the breed can probably assist determine final adult size.”

When Do Mixed-Breed Dogs Reach Adulthood?

Determining the growth rate of non-purebred puppies might be difficult. “Unfortunately, when dealing with a dog of uncertain lineage, determining the final size becomes a bit of a guessing game,” Dr Klein explains. This is especially true for puppies between 6 and 10 weeks.

“If you run your hands along a dog’s rib cage and can still feel the ‘knobs’ of the ribs, that dog will most likely continue to grow in height,” Dr Klein advises. This is because the “knobs” are the still-developing growth plates of the ribs. How Do Puppies Grow, Anyway?

Most Dogs grow in much the same way that human children do anatomically, especially when it comes to height.

Muscle and other soft tissue growth in your puppy are straightforward to predict; after all, muscles can increase throughout a dog’s life. Many mature dogs could even “bulk up” if put through an exercise regimen that included resistance training and proper nutrition.

But bones aren’t like that. They don’t grow at all as adults, and it isn’t easy to imagine how they will expand in size early in your pet’s life.

The long bones in a puppy’s legs grow from two unique areas called growth plates rather than growing in a generalized manner that includes the entire bone. Growth plates are relatively thin cartilaginous areas where new tissue is formed at each end of the bones.

The growth plates are rather flexible and squishy when new tissue is created during puppyhood.

The new tissue hardens and calcifies as it ages, eventually transforming into bone. The growth plates are said to have “closed” when they have finished creating new tissue and become entirely calcified, indicating that they have stopped growing and the bone has achieved its final size.

Growth plates are quite delicate and easily damaged. As a result, it’s critical to keep newborn puppies from getting too much exercise, which can harm their development plates. Allowing dogs to jump to considerable heights, such as onto or off the couch.

Puppy Growth Factors Based on Size and Breed

Small breeds dogs, it turns out, stop developing sooner than huge ones.

This makes sense because large breeds develop significantly faster than small breeds dogs when they are born, and they cease growing.

Consider that Chihuahua puppies are born weighing about 5 ounces and attain a mature weight of roughly 5 pounds. This translates to a 15-fold increase in size.

A Great Dane puppy, on the other hand, weighs roughly 1 pound at birth and 100 pounds or more when fully grown.

This indicates that they have a 100-fold variation in size throughout their lives.

There are medium sized dogs that weigh between 30-50 pounds that don’t fit into small or large breed categories. Medium size dogs tend to mature by 12 months of age. 

Large breed puppies must grow over a longer period than their smaller counterparts because it takes time to convert food into new tissue.

Small dog breeds cease developing around the age of 6 to 8 months, but large breeds continue to grow until they are 12 to 18 months old.

A perfectly proportioned puppy bed won’t last long with a young Newfoundland. Thus, larger breeds can cost a lot more.

Other Factors Affecting Puppy Growth

Aside from your dog’s breed, a few additional factors can affect his growth rate and final size. The following are two of the more crucial ones:

  1. Genetic Dissimilarities

Every dog has a unique genetic code that influences how long he grows, looks, and how big he gets as an adult.

Some genetic features are passed down from parent to puppy, while others result from random DNA recombination variance.

This indicates that puppies with large parents may have a little longer growth phase and eventually larger, although this is not guaranteed. Large parents can have little offspring on occasion and vice versa.

  1. Dietary requirements

Puppies fed a substandard diet may not receive all of the nutrients and protein they need to grow into big, strapping canines.

As a result, you’ll want to feed your puppy high-quality puppy food to help him reach his full potential (and to keep him healthy in general).

These diets have higher protein content and are specially developed to give pups’ growing bodies nutrients.

If you have a large breed puppy, you should choose a portion of food made specifically for them. Large dogs that grow too fast may develop orthopaedic issues later in life.

Read Also: How to remove pet hair from car: Top 10 Best Ways

Frequently Asked Questions

When does a dog reach full maturity?

Little breeds tend to stop growing at 6 to 8 months of age. Dogs of medium breeds achieve adult size around the age of 12 months. Large breed dogs typically cease developing between 12 and 18 months.

Is it possible to predict how big a puppy will grow?

Based on the breed’s average adult size, you may estimate how big a puppy will grow. The size of a puppy’s paws might also indicate how big it will grow. Large paws on a puppy are usually an indication that the dog will mature into a larger dog. A dog DNA test is the most accurate way to predict how big your puppy will grow.

After six months, how much will a dog grow?

After six months, your dog’s growth trajectory will be mostly determined by its breed and expected adult size. At six months, small breed dogs will be nearly the full size, while big dogs will be about two-thirds of their adult weight. Giant breeds will be around half the size of full-grown adults.


Dogs stop growing when their bones and joints have matured. This occurs at different times for different breeds of dogs, with smaller dogs maturing more quickly than larger ones. -The growth process is controlled by several hormones, including testosterone and growth hormone. -Puppies should not be separated from their mothers before the age of eight weeks to ensure they receive adequate nutrition that supports healthy growth.

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