Can You Determine Your Puppy's Adult Size By Their Paws? | Pupford
January 27th, 2023
Filed under Pet Parenting
Introducing a new puppy into your home is always an exciting experience! Who doesn't love puppies and their cute, playful attitude?
Have you ever wondered how big your puppy will be when they are fully grown? Some people prefer to wait and see, while others like to plan ahead.
It may not matter as much if you have a big house and yard. But if you plan to your pup, it can be helpful to know your pup's size when it is grown. Knowing the size of your pup can also help you plan for the space and supplies, such as food and bedding, you will need for them.
But can you determine your puppy's size by its paws? The answer is yes... and no.
While it is not a perfect science, looking at your pup's paws can give you a general gauge of their eventual size.
For example, Great Dane puppies have very large paws, indicating that they will be much bigger once grown. But, dogs like border collies have more petite paws for their size while bulldogs have larger paws despite their size. Of course, there are also other factors to consider, such as the rate at which your pup grows and when it will stop growing. To better understand these factors, we'll look at each one more closely.
THE RATE AT WHICH A PUPPY GROWS
Puppies grow so quickly in their first few months of life! It's amazing how much their weight can double or even triple in such a short time. That's because their are still immature when they are born and need to develop to reach their full size.
When observing your pup's paws, you'll want to pay attention to how quickly they grow. Usually, the size of a puppy's paws will increase in tandem with its body size.
So if you notice your pup's paws expanding quickly, that could indicate that your pup is growing quickly too. This can give you a better idea of your pup's size when fully grown.
CALCULATING YOUR DOG'S ADULT SIZE
A dog's growth rate varies by breed. So there are different formulas to predict their adult weight by the general breed size. Dog breeds are generally broken into five categories by size, but keep in mind there is some overlap with dogs on each category's lower and higher end.
- Toy (up to 12 pounds)
- Small (12-25 pounds)
- Medium (25-50 pounds)
- Large (50-100 pounds)
- Giant (over 100 pounds)
develop faster than larger breeds and stop growing between 8 and 9 months of age.
Most of their growth happens between 0-11 weeks. On average, they gain about 5-10% of their body weight daily (roughly 1-5 oz per week).
To best predict a toy's adult size, you'll want to take its 6-week weight, double it and then double it again. So a puppy who weighs 2 pounds at 6 weeks will weigh approximately 8 pounds as an adult (2×2=4, 4×2=8).
Some popular toy breeds include the Chihuahua, Maltese, Pekinese, Pomeranian, Shih Tzu, Toy Poodle, and Yorkshire Terrier.
typically stop growing between eight and 12 months.
Like toy breeds, most of their growth occurs between 0-11 weeks. They gain about 5-8 ounces each week. You can apply the same formula for toy breeds to predict their adult weight: take their six-week weight, double it and double it again.
Some popular small breeds include the Beagle, Dachshund, French Bulldog, Jack Russell Terrier, Pug, Shetland Sheepdog, and West Highland White Terrier.
usually reach their adult weight between 9 and 12 months, with the most rapid growth occurring between 0-16 weeks.
To calculate medium-sized breeds, take their weight at 14 weeks, multiply that by 2 and add that figure to 1/2 of their 14-week weight. So if your puppy weighs 14 pounds at 14 weeks: 14×2=28, 28+7=35 pounds.
Some popular medium breeds include the Basset Hound, Border Collie, Bulldog, Cocker Spaniel, English Springer Spaniel, Staffordshire Bull Terrier, and Whippet.
can take 12 to 18 months to reach their adult weight and height, with the most rapid growth occurring between 0-20 weeks.
To calculate their adult weight, there are two methods you can use:
- Divide their weight at 20 weeks by their current age in weeks and multiply by 52. So for a puppy who weighs 35 pounds at 20 weeks: 35÷20=1.75, 1.75×52=91 pounds.
- Simply double their weight at 6 months of age.
Some popular large breeds include the Boxer, Bloodhound, Doberman Pinscher, German Shepherd, Golden Retriever, Labrador Retriever, Rottweiler, and Standard Poodle.
Giant breeds typically take 12-18 months to finish growing, but some can take up to 2 to 3 years before they reach their full adult size.
The most rapid growth occurs between 0-25 weeks. The calculation method for giant breeds is the same as for large breeds:
- Divide their weight at 20 weeks by their current age in weeks and multiply by 52. So for a puppy who weighs 45 pounds at 20 weeks: 45÷20=2.25, 2.25×52=117 pounds.
- Double their weight at 6 months of age.
Some popular giant breeds include the Great Dane, Irish Wolfhound, Mastiff, Newfoundland, and Saint Bernard.
WHAT IF YOU DON'T KNOW THE BREED?
How big will my mixed-breed puppy get? Well, this is more complicated if you have a mixed breed or don't know your dog's breed makeup. In the latter case, you can always consider doing a dog to determine its breed makeup (you'll want to do a DNA test ASAP since results can take a few weeks).
OTHER WAYS TO INDICATE YOUR DOG'S GROWTH
In addition to using your pup's paw size to determine its adult size, there are other ways to indicate its growth.
- Consider your pup's parents: This will give you an idea of how big your pup will become. You can also look up , allowing you to estimate the height and weight of a purebred dog. However, if you have a mixed breed, you'll need to calculate the future size by looking at the parents. Generally, female puppies take after their mother's size, while male puppies may be slightly larger.
- Check your pup's weight: It is important to keep an eye on your pup's weight to know how big it will grow. Generally, the heavier a pup is, the larger it will be when fully mature. To get an approximate idea of your pup's adult size, you can use the rule of thumb that the pup's height at four months of age will be four times its adult height and weight.
- Check your puppy's coat: Look at your pup's coat to get an idea of its adult size. Generally, longer coats indicate that they'll grow to be larger. However, this isn't always the case, as some breeds have longer coats, no matter their size. Checking your puppy's coat can help you understand what to expect when they're fully grown!
- Bring the puppy to the vet: Nothing is more reliable than an expert's advice. Hence, you should consider bringing your puppy to the vet to have it examined. Veterinarians have years of experience dealing with different dogs of different breeds. They can help you review your pup and determine its height and weight when it reaches adulthood.
- Check your pup's bone structure: It's helpful to pay special attention to your pup's legs and paws when determining their adult size. They may grow into larger dogs if they have a larger bone structure and paws. Conversely, if they have smaller legs and paws, they may grow into medium-sized dogs. Taking these factors into account can help you better anticipate your pup's adult size. Greyhound puppies, however, have a fine bone structure compared to other breeds. As a result, these puppies are known to grow tall and skinny.
- Finally, check your pup's head: It's good if you're looking at your pup's head – that's a great way to get an idea of their potential size! Generally, larger heads mean they'll grow into bigger dogs, as their head is usually proportional to their body size.
WHEN DO MOST DOGS STOP GROWING?
Figuring out when your pup will stop growing can be tricky! But, if you know your pup's breed and size, you can get a more accurate read on their adult size. Most dogs reach their full size by the time they are one year old. However, some breeds continue to grow until they are two years old. So, if you're unsure of what breed your pup is, it's best to assume they will reach around their full size by one year old (or longer).
You can use the following information to determine when your puppy will stop growing:
- Chihuahuas and Yorkshire Terriers, also known as toy breed dogs, will stop growing when they reach 8-9 months.
- Beagles and Basenjis, considered medium-sized dogs, will reach their adult size in 9-12 months.
- Boxers and Golden Retrievers, considered large dogs, will stop growing when they are about 12-18 months.
- Great Danes, known as giant dogs, will take up to three years to reach their final adult size and weight.
Selecting the right puppy for your home can be a challenging decision. We also understand that it's important to know the size of your pup when fully grown so that you can give them the best care possible. We hope this article will help you do so. Let us know in the comment section if you have any further questions.