So, you’re wondering when pitbulls stop growing? Maybe you’ve just adopted a pitbull puppy and want to make sure you’re prepared for their growth. Or maybe you’ve noticed your male pitbull, or female pitbull, has continued to grow past the point where you thought they’d stop.
My name is Rocky, and there’s no one better to explain to you when pitbulls stop growing, because I’m a pitbull myself.
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So, today, I will answer the question of “When do pitbulls stop growing?” I’ll also give you a breakdown of what you can expect from your pitbull’s growth.
Pitbull Growth: The Basics
Every dog has a different growth pattern. An American pitbull terrier usually continues to grow for the first two to three years of our life. Us pitbulls usually reach our max height at around 18 months old, but even when we reach our max height, we will continue to bulk up for some time after. We’ll generally continue to gain weight until we’re about three years old.
Puppies grow fast, and a pitbull puppy is no exception. We tend to have a growth spurt at the age of four-to-nine months. These months can be rough – think of them like the teenage years. This is the time that you want to put in the effort to train us.
After our growth spurts, we continue to grow for another year, but at a much slower rate. Once we’re fully grown, that’s when we start bulking up and gaining muscle. We don’t even have to go to the gym! A female pitbull is smaller and has a lighter build than a male pitbull, but female pitbulls can still get pretty bulky.
There are several factors that can affect our growth:
- Genetics – Different breeds and mixes will result in varying sizes. Check your pitbull’s parents to get an idea of what size they might become.
- Nutrition – Proper nutrition is as essential to our growth as it is to yours. Make sure you’ll feed us good quality food!
- Injury – Any form of stress might impede our growth, and injury is one of them. Illness can also stop us from reaching our full growth potential.
Pitbull Growth: What to Expect
Now that you have an overview on what pitbull growth is like, let me break it down for you a little more.
First 3 weeks
Did you know that most dogs are born without being able to see or hear? Pitbulls are no exception. Our eyes will be completely closed, and we come out toothless, not unlike you humans. We find our mom by touch, but that’s basically all we can do. Now is not the time to teach us how to play catch! We really only know three things: eating, sleeping, and growing.
But then, after about two weeks, we can see! At three weeks our hearing kicks in, and we start discovering the sound of our own voice. You’ll even notice little white marks poking from our gums, meaning our teeth are coming in. I wasn’t lying when I said puppies grow fast!
This stage of our life is very important to our learning. We learn from everything around us at this age, including you!
You’ll notice that we’ll become more active but remember that we are still babies. Please be easy on your pitbull puppy and be positive. Give us a chance to play with other people so that we warm up to being more social.
We also start weaning at this age, so if you haven’t already, provide us with some puppy food. By seven weeks, we’ll be fully functioning puppies and eating solid foods.
This is where we become social butterflies. Take us to the dog park or enroll in a puppy class to give us a chance to meet and interact with other dogs. At this point, we’re most likely only really comfortable with you at home, so you want us to recognize that other people and dogs are not a threat. This gives you the best chance of having an easygoing adult pitbull who is friendly around children and other dogs.
Here we go: the teen years. This is where your puppy pitbull will attempt to test your boundaries and be intentionally bad sometimes. You really want to ramp up the training during this stage.
You can take us to doggy school where we’ll meet other dogs, and you can learn some good training tips. You can also train us at home if you find the right resources. I know it can be rough at times, but please be patient while training us. It might take some time, but we will learn!
This is also the time when the second stage of teething occurs, but this time we’re losing our puppy teeth and growing in our adult teeth. Expect a lot of chewing during this time. Your best bet is to get us some interesting dog chew toys and keep your favorite shoes hidden!
Sick of us growing yet? I don’t blame you. Up until this point, we’ve grown so fast that it’s hard to keep up and it seems like there’s no end in sight.
Make sure that you continue our training during this time. Discourage excessive barking and teach us that it is wrong to chew on people. Our cognition is also developing quicker, so we’ll be able to retain more information during this time.
You also don’t want to forget to spay or neuter your pitbull at around six months old. I hate even saying the words, but it is necessary if you don’t want to avoid your female pitbull from having unwanted puppies, or your male pitbull from getting into dog fights.
Approaching 1 year
By now, we’re looking like adults. But don’t be surprised if we still act like puppies. We still need lots of attention, and you can reinforce good behavior by giving us yummy treats.
Make sure that we’re getting enough exercise. There’s nothing worse than a bored pitbull, we’ll end up exercising ourselves indoors, and you won’t like it! Take us on lots of walks, and now is the time for that game of fetch.
After a year, you can call us adults if you would like. However, as I mentioned, this is when we start doing the majority of our bulking and gain a lot of muscle. Make sure you start giving us good quality adult dog food with all of the nutrients we need.
At this age, we still need training, opportunities to socialize, proper exercise, and enough of your attention. Actually, if I’m being honest, we never stop needing these things. We really don’t become sedentary until we’re old, so get ready for some fun, active years with us!
Keeping Up with a Growing Pitbull
Well, there you have it! Now you know the answer to “When do pitbulls stop growing?” Plus, you’re aware of all of the early stages of our growth. Pitbulls grow fast, so if you have a puppy, make sure you cherish every minute with him!