Puppy Growth Charts: A Growing Trend
How big will your puppy get? See how these handy tools can help you chart his growth!
One of the first questions any dog lover adopting a puppy wants to know is, "How big will he grow?" A convenient and fun way to track your new dog's progress is by using puppy growth charts.
Estimate the Weight
A full-grown dog's size depends on its breed. Obviously, a Labrador is going to be bigger than a Pug, so you'll want to have a rough idea about a dog's size prior to adopting. Dr. Greg Magnusson of Leo's Pet Care — a veterinary care clinic in Indiana — estimates that puppies will grow at different rates when they are different ages. Different breeds of puppies may grow at different rates, as well. Magnusson asserts that a dog's adult weight could be twice as much as his weight at 4 months of age.
According to Magnusson's blog, estimating a dog's adult weight involves some minor calculations:
- Small breeds: weight at 6 weeks x 4 = adult weight
- Medium to large breeds: weight at 14 weeks x 2.5 = adult weight
- Large to giant breeds: weight at 5 months x 2 = adult weight
How to Measure and Chart a Dog's Height
Before you can start keeping track of a dog's height, you need to know exactly how to measure him. A dog's height is measured at his withers, which is the spot on a dog that's equivalent to a human's shoulders (it's more or less where the dog's neck ends). From there, measure straight down to the floor in inches.
Tracking a dog's height might be a bit more challenging than predicting his weight. First, create your own chart, with height being the vertical column and age being the horizontal column. Then, simply measure your dog's height. This can be a tad tricky if your dog is a squirmer. Once you've measured his height successfully, plot it on the chart against his age. As your dog ages, you'll be able to plot a chart showing his growth rate as it relates to his age until he reaches full height.
Making and Enjoying Fond Memories
Many parents have a long tradition of measuring their children as they grow by standing them in a doorway and carving a notch in the frame. Next to that mark, they write the child's height and age. As children grow into adults, fond memories arise from looking back on the markings recording those many years past. Measuring your dog's height — and reflecting on fond memories — isn't that much different.
As parents do with their children, so do dog owners cherish every moment of watching their pups grow. Now, they can track it every year (and inch!) at a time thanks to puppy growth charts.