Your 5-month old puppy is changing nearly every day. Learn about the major and minor milestones your Dood will hit this month. And, see how they’re changing – right before your very eyes!
GOOD NEWS, Dood!
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Your puppy’s adult teeth should be all in by the end of this month! You know what that means – the biting [should be] coming to a highly anticipated finale. But! You’re not quite there yet…your 20-week old puppy may still chew and bite for a little longer, so be sure to continue offering some frozen Kongs or meaty-flavored chew toys to spare your hands and ankles.
Here’s another big thing to keep in mind: If you haven’t done it yet, talk with your vet soon about getting your puppy spayed/neutered. Vets usually like to have this done around six months of age.
Until then, it might interest you to learn what to expect this month with your puppy, both developmentally and as a Doodle puppy parent.
20-24 Week Old Puppy Growth: Physical And Behavioral Development
Just as they were last month, your puppy is still growing and changing rapidly. Here’s how your Dood is changing as a 20-week old puppy.
5-Month Old Puppy Physical Development
The heaviest chewing period for most puppies is 20-21 weeks, then after that, it should really start to subside. All of your Doodle’s adult teeth should be in by the end of this month (meaning less biting and chewing)!
Their adult coat may also start to emerge this month; brush them every day to avoid matting as they start to shed their puppy coat.
Believe it or not, your puppy will reach sexual maturity between now and the next couple of months. Consider having them spayed or neutered by 6 months if they’re a small Doodle weighing less than 50 lbs., and between 9-15 months if they’re over 50 lbs. after they stop growing.
Depending on your Dood’s estimated adult size, they may already be ready to be spayed/neutered; talk to your vet to learn more.
Mini and Medium Doodles will reach about half their adult weight this month. Nevertheless, a 5-month old puppy will continue to grow at an individual growth rate. (Be sure to keep track of it with our Doodle Puppy Growth Tracker!)
As your Dood continues to get bigger, they will need more and more food; make sure you’re feeding puppy food and the right amount of it.
By the end of this month, you can start taking advantage of your Doodle’s increasing stamina and take them on a twenty-minute walk each day.
5-Month Old Puppy Behavioral Development
Your Dood may become less dependent on you for a sense of security. They will likely start to wander further from your side, motivated by their increasing curiosity and confidence in the world around them.
Doodles at this age have so much energy right now, but they don’t really know how to deal with it. Help yours to get plenty of exercise to help burn off that energy in a productive way and decrease incidences of naughtiness.
Your Dood will likely be fully house trained by the end of this month (though it is still normal if they aren’t quite yet).
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Your 20-24 week old Dood is now developing their style of play. You’ll likely observe them rehearsing their adult role with some humping, nips, growls, and generally rougher play style.
What To Expect As A Doodle Parent
Prepare to keep your puppy stimulated and engaged. For example, when outdoors, change direction frequently so that they have to keep coming to find you. Games and puzzles are also great for pups this age.
Always reward your puppy generously for “checking in” with you on walks. The foundations of a great recall are often built (or ruined) during this timeframe.
Continue leash training and obedience training, especially in public where there are lots of exciting distractions.
Take your Doodle with you everywhere possible! This “pre-adolescent” period is very important in solidifying a strong bond to withstand the challenges of adolescence (which isn’t far off).
If you haven’t done so already, get your Doodle in for an introductory grooming session right away.
Finally, expect tons of heart-melt moments with your Dood at this age.
- Continue providing a lot of puppy-safe toys and be sure to keep “chewables” out of reach (i.e. shoes, houseplants, electrical cords, etc.)
- Do an evaluation once a week on how much you’re feeding your puppy to see if the amount needs to be adjusted.
- Continue to avoid giving them bones, antlers, hooves, hard nylon dog toys, or other hard chews – all of which can damage soft puppy teeth.
- Brush your puppy every day to avoid matting as they start to shed their puppy coat, and trim their nails weekly.
- Never punish your Doodle, as it can damage their confidence and emotional psyche.
This month will continue to bring lots of swoon-worthy, picturesque moments along with a possible increase in rebellious behavior. All in all, your 5-month old puppy is continuing to grow tremendously fast and looks (and acts) more like an adult dog with each passing day.
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