Table of Contents
Puppy Homing Age: The Evidence
Dogs were asked about their behavior towards people and other dogs. The results were compared to the age at which they were acquired.
It will seem dramatic, but it is not as bad as it sounds. These are not a big problem for most dogs. I want you to see that there is a difference.
The study looked at the behaviors at home or away. This is what they found.
A homing age of 13-16 weeks was associated with unfamiliar people outside the home.
growling, snapping, biting or trying to bite.
When compared with homing ages of 6-7 weeks and 8 weeks, all of these showed significance.
People visiting the home.
There is a The 9-12 week group had a higher prevalence of barking than the 6-7 week group. The 8 week group had a lower prevalence of growling than the 9-12 week group. The 13-16 week group had a higher prevalence of snapping, biting or trying to bite than the other groups.
The group homed at 6-7 weeks showed the lowest prevalence of barking.
This study only used dogs that were raised in the actual living quarters. These puppies were not deprived at all.
A Recommended Puppy Age
The best age to get a puppy is 8 weeks old. As long as the puppy can act on its own, seven weeks is probably better. This will not be possible very often.
Understanding the special needs of older puppies is the most important message. You will need to put more effort into training and socialisation after 8 weeks. I wrote about the consequences of adopting puppies after 16 weeks of age.
There are some useful resources here.
There is a A puppy training guide. There is a puppy social checklist.
Are you able to get the breeder to help? It depends. Some breeders do a good job. I have seen other people make a complete mess of it.
Too early an age is harmful as well. Adoptions between the ages of 30 and 40 days were more common than those taking 60 days.
There is a destructiveness, excessive barking, fearfulness on walks, reactivity to noises, toy & food possessiveness, and attention-seeking.
There is a higher incidence of these behaviors in puppies sold from pet stores. In order to reach the shop at an appropriate time, they are likely to experience disruption at an earlier age.
I don’t want to discourage people from getting older puppies or dogs from the shelter. I want you to understand that it gets harder, and to choose the best age if you can. Taking older puppies and adults is rewarding, and these dogs respond well to a loving and responsible home.
The quality of a dog owner’s care is always more important than anything else.
Do you have something to add? Comments will appear within 24 hours. By AndrewSpanner A vet in Australia.
Puppies are like babies: they require a lot of attention & care!
Most pups and owners will experience some difficulties in the first few days. It can’t be helped with the world of his litter mates suddenly gone and a new world thrown upon them. You can accomplish things with patience and good humor.
The best puppy age range to bring home is 6 to 8 weeks of age. A lot of breeders think 9 weeks is the best time to breed. There will be a need for frequent rest periods with a puppy in this age range.
When your puppy first arrives in his new home, he might go crazy to explore anything and everything for a few days while he adjusts. As long as your puppy is not in harm’s way, this will pass. Then let the little squirt hit it.
An Important Disclaimer – Older Dogs Can Still Sometimes Be Best!
If a dog has been socialized properly, seen many places, met and played with many people and other dogs, experienced many things, been house-trained, crate-trained, all during the right times in its puppy-hood, then it is perfectly safe and fine to take on.
An article that says 8 weeks is the best time to adopt an older dog is correct, but it doesn’t mean taking on an older dog is bad or anything.
Taking on a pre-trained and socialized mature dog is the best solution for busy families who don’t want to go through house training.
If given the chance, most dogs will love a new family and be valuable and loving companions.
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They Learn Bite Inhibition And Having A ‘Soft Mouth’
The strength of the puppy’s bite and not biting too hard will be learned from its mother and other puppies.
The litter-mates will move away if the puppy bites them, and the mother will discipline the puppy if it hurts it.
The puppy will be the victim of too hard biting, so it gets a first hand experience of how painful it can be.
The puppy learns that biting too hard hurts and results in bad consequences, so they slowly learn to control their bite.
Bite inhibition is a vital skill for any dog to learn.
If taken away before these lessons are learned, the puppy will bite hard not knowing any better and this can be very dangerous as the puppy matures into a larger and stronger dog.
It can be difficult and even painful to teach bite inhibition yourself.