Cherokee German Shepherds

Making The World A Better Place One Dog At A Time

Puppy Development: From The Humane Society Web Site

Birth To Two Weeks – Neonatal Period

  • Puppy is most influenced by his mother.
  • Senses of touch and taste are present at birth.

Two To Four Weeks – Transitional Period

  • Puppy is most influenced by his mother and littermates.
  • “Eyes open, teeth begin to come in, and senses of hearing and smell develop.”
  • “Puppy begins to stand, walk a little, wag tail, and bark.”
  • “By the fourth or fifth week, eyesight is well-developed.”

Three To Twelve Weeks – Socialization Period

  • “During this period, puppy needs opportunities to meet other dogs and people.”
  • “By 3 to 5 weeks, puppy becomes aare of his surroundings, companions (both canine and human), and relationships, including play.”
  • “By 4 to 6 weeks, puppy is most influenced by littermates and is learning about being a dog.”
  • “From 4 to 12 weeks, puppy remains influenced by littermates and is also influenced by people. Puppy learns to play, develops social skills, learns the inhibited bite, explores social structure, ranking, and improves physical coordination.”
  • “By 5 to 7 weeks, puppy develops curiosity and explores new experiences. Puppy needs positive “”people”" experiences during this time.”
  • “By 7 to 9 weeks, puppy is refining his physical skills and coordination, and can begin to be housetrained. Puppy has full use of his senses.”
  • “By 9 to 12 weeks, puppy is refining reactions, developing social skills with littermates (appropriate interactions), and exploring the environment and objects. Puppy begins to focus on people; this is a good time to begin training.”

Three To Six Months – Ranking Period

  • “Puppy is most influenced by “playmates,” which may now include those of other species (people, other pets).”
  • “Puppy begis to see and use ranking (dominance and submission) within the household (the puppy’s “”pack”"), including humans.”
  • Puppy begins teething (and associated chewing behavior).
  • “At 4 months of age, puppy experiences another fear stage.”

Six To Eighteen Months – Adolescense

  • “Puppy is most influenced by human and dog “pack” members.”
  • “At 7 to 9 months, puppy goes through a second chewing phase, part of exploring territory.”
  • “Puppy increases exploration of dominance, including challenging humans.”
  • “If not spayed or neutered, puppy experiences beginnings of sexual behavior.”


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