What to Expect From a 6 Month Old Puppy
At this point, your puppy will have reached puberty and may act in ways you find disobedient, as they explore their dominance in the home hierarchy. This behavior should not be misinterpreted; rather it indicates their desire to assert themselves.
Your dog should now be fully housetrained, able to go longer without going outside, and they may even be starting to shed their baby teeth (known as deciduous teeth) to make way for adult ones.
At six months, your puppy officially becomes an adolescent – marking an exciting new chapter and with it new challenges. Adolescence in puppies resembles what humans experience during their teen years with rebellion and destructive behaviors akin to rebellion and destructiveness, though their bodies still grow larger as they shed baby teeth for adult ones resulting in chewing everything around. To protect him and prevent furniture damage during this stage, give appropriate chew toys and supervise play sessions when possible.
At this point, your pup should be completely potty-trained and capable of holding his bladder for longer. He may still require four to six trips outside daily for potty breaks; accidents may happen occasionally as his elimination muscles expand or when something triggers him to think about going. It is crucial that any adverse experiences and interactions during this formative stage in his life do not upset or upset the process further.
Your puppy should also begin obedience training during this stage; they should be able to sit, stay and come when called as well as learn basic tricks such as rolling over and crawling. In addition, teaching him drop items on command is also recommended to aid cleanup duties and ensure your safety when it comes time to remove an object he shouldn’t.
Your 6-month old puppy should have outgrown its teething phase by now, with only a few adult teeth coming in, making him dependent on chew toys! He may need his adult teeth extracted occasionally. Fear periods tend to be less impactful than their first version but still wise to be avoided during this stage; regular vet visits at this age should be scheduled so you can discuss spaying or neutering; flea, tick and heartworm prevention and vaccination with your veterinarian.
Six months is an important milestone for your puppy. At this age, they should have all their puppy vaccinations complete and only require boosters each year to remain protected against infectious diseases. At this stage, their permanent adult teeth should have come through and may lessen chewing obsessively compared with before. But their hormone-packed bodies still carry on producing willful or rebellious behaviors, so remain firm when training your pup.
At six months, your pup should typically have two bottom front teeth (central incisors) and possibly some lower lateral incisors. At this age, they may begin chewing non-play items like shoes or clothing and need plenty of safe chew toys available to them to address this issue.
At this age, some puppies will experience another fear period; therefore it’s crucial that new things and people be introduced slowly with positive reinforcement in a relaxed, positive manner and no stressful situations should arise. Doing this will prevent negative associations that could limit how your pup explores its world.
By now, your puppy should be fully trained in both its crate and house training. While an accident might still occur inside occasionally, they should be more reliable and responsive to outside commands than they were as a younger puppy. It would also be prudent to get them spayed or neutered and start on heartworm and flea/tick prevention medications if applicable.
At this stage, your puppy should be eating a diet which provides all of the essential nutrients for their healthy development and growth. If your pup is of large breed origin, consult with your vet regarding whether a switch to adult food should occur at this point; these larger dogs have an increased risk of osteoarthritis later in life and vets often advise switching over. Adult food designed specifically for large breeds typically contains less calories while providing extra glucosamine and chondroitin to promote slow and steady growth; in addition, continue worming them every three months and treating fleas and ticks when necessary.
At six months, your puppy’s personality begins to fully blossom as he makes more independent decisions on his own. He may begin playing more aggressively and asserting dominance within the pack; show interest in female dogs that are in heat; develop more distinct adult coat; brush daily to avoid matting while his coat sheds; trim his nails weekly.
At this stage, it’s essential that you continue the socialization efforts your puppy is engaging in with its mother and littermates as well as any family pets. Beginning obedience training should also begin gradually but remember to use only positive reinforcement; otherwise phobias could easily develop from negative experiences between humans and the environment.
Puppies at this stage are beginning to have greater bladder control; however, accidents will still happen from time to time. Therefore it’s essential that they go potty every 7 hours on an established schedule.
By the end of this stage, your puppy should have been both crate trained and housebroken. He’ll likely know basic commands such as “sit,” and may already know to wait his turn when going outside. Now is an excellent opportunity to work on impulse control by teaching him “wait” for treats or toys while learning the word no.
At this age, puppies are an excellent way to start obedience training, however be patient as this stage of their lives may quickly bore them with repetitive exercises and challenge your training efforts by acting out or disobeying commands they had learned earlier. Rebellious behaviors could emerge at this time too – they might ignore your commands altogether or act like they have forgotten any training they received earlier!
Your dog should become familiar with new people and animals, traffic noises, public transportation rides, car rides with other dogs and any other experiences they are unfamiliar with in order to help build confidence when encountering similar experiences in the future. If a pup becomes nervous during this phase, try not to reward it and instead reward for calm behavior instead.
At six months, your pup enters their teenage years and their personality begins to flourish. Clumsy, playful and curious behaviors become evident while they begin learning the ways of their environment and what’s safe and unsafe – something Siracusa calls “absorbing everything like a sponge”. She advises parents to continue with socialization and obedience training.
At this stage, puppies should be able to walk on a leash and understand basic commands such as sit, down and no. Their bladder and bowel function should be fully under their control and they should have become comfortable being left alone for short periods. Teething issues may still exist at first but should subside over time. Chewing should be encouraged but only on safe durable toys; owners should avoid encouraging this behavior with shoes or clothing as this could put your pup at risk of an injury.
At 16 weeks, Naito suggests families expose their puppies to common people, places and activities such as car rides, traffic noise and public transit noise, visitors of all ages (children as well as adults), other dogs/cats/visitors to vet, walks to vet appointments as well as body handling (including petting).
Puppies at this age are also beginning to develop their decision-making abilities, which will give them more independence while simultaneously testing boundaries. They may obey your command for instance but then decide instead to chase after a squirrel instead – perfectly normal behavior that must be reinforced while disregarding bad ones.
At this age, it’s crucial that you establish a routine with your puppy, giving them plenty of one-on-one attention from humans and teaching the basics of obedience such as sitting, staying, heeling and no. Positive reinforcement should be used whenever possible when conducting training, such as rewarding them when they complete each command that’s been asked of them.