A dog wearing a birthday hat sits in front of a cake with candles.

Your pup’s first birthday is an important milestone in their life, as they start to transition from puppyhood to adulthood. While every dog is unique, most dogs reach adulthood between the ages of 1-to-2 years old. As your dog grows, you can expect some changes to occur both behaviorally and physically. Continuous wellness care becomes more important than ever as their bodies and needs change. 

The team at Blue Valley Animal Hospital is here to break down those changes so you know what to expect when your dog turns one. 

What to Expect After Your Dog Turns One

Physical Development: Depending on the breed of your dog, your pup might continue to grow past the age of one. Smaller breeds reach physical maturity from about 9 months to a year, while larger breeds can take up to 2 years to stop growing. Your dog will be considered physically mature when they reach their full height and recommended weight for their breed.  

Reproductive Ability: Most dogs reach sexual maturity by 6 months of age, when they are able to start physically reproducing. While spays and neuters are usually performed after your dog has reached sexual maturity, it’s always best to talk to your vet about what is recommended for your dog’s individual needs. 

Puppy Behavior: When your pet reaches the age of 1, they may still have the emotional characteristics of a puppy. Your dog will still have some puppy energy, and may still be fighting the impulse to chew everything. However, they should be settling into the routine of your home and learning some socialization skills. You can always contact us for behavioral advice and tips. Your pet may also benefit from regular socialization in our Doggy Daycare program.

No More Puppy Teeth: At this age, your dog should have all of their permanent adult teeth. This is a great age to introduce regular teeth brushing and pet dental care, for a lifetime of health. 

Preventive Care: Annual wellness visits are essential to maintaining a happy and healthy life for your dog. Yearly wellness visits allow us to track and monitor the progress of your pet’s development, physical health, diet and nutrition, and overall well-being. Wellness exams also allow us to keep track of oral health, keep them up-to-date on core vaccinations, and prevent or identify any illness or disease. We may also recommend parasite prevention and heartworm testing

Vaccines: Vaccinations are an important part of your pet’s ongoing health and wellness. We will help you determine which vaccines are essential to your dog’s health, and will recommend the timing for administering those vaccinations throughout their life. 

We are here for you during every age and stage of your dog’s growth. From puppyhood, to adulthood, and into their golden years, the team at Blue Valley Animal Hospital is ready to care for your dog. Give us a call at (913) 681‑2818 to schedule an appointment.