What to expect at 1 year

Written by: Kassie Dickson, CDBC, CPDT-KA

Your pup is officially a year old! 🎉

You’ve made it through most of the difficult moments in your pup’s training and day to day life. 

Here’s where the fun stuff happens. It’s important to remember your dog will continue to learn and grow throughout their life. There’s no stopping that, so enjoy it and have fun with your dog! Remember that when it comes to being social with other dogs or people and different pets, if your dog hasn’t met them, it won’t know how to interact with them.

As pup guardians, when our dogs reach this age, we often tend to slack on things we’ve been working on thinking our dogs are old enough to know better. However the truth is that if we haven't shown our dog, they won’t know. It’s unfair to expect perfection based on their age, we need to continue to set our pups up for success.

Keep up with trick training and decompression walks, find a sport or fun activity your dog enjoys. Keep introducing your dog to new adventures and always remember to have fun with your dog!


We’ve been working so hard with our dogs. Keep growing and training, work on decompression walks and even more low level activities that tucker out your dog’s brain! 


Growth and Behaviours

At a year old, your puppy is still very much growing. Each dog is an individual, every breed and size grows differently both physically and mentally. At this age your pup should have their full set of pearly whites, so you may want to plan on effective ways to take care of them! If you haven’t already, regular brushing of those chompers is important.

Some pups at this age may still be showing many adolescent behaviours, they are both still curious and vulnerable, so set your pup up for success by continuing to guide them. They may not be as “mature” as we think they should be, so keep offering them the appropriate exercise, sleep, and mental stimulation. The rest comes with training!

At this age your pup should be up for longer walks or hikes. If before they were beginning to get tired or lose their enthusiasm, you may start to notice that now they are more apt to make longer treks. This is a great time to go on hikes and even camping trips with your dog if you haven’t already. Introducing them to these things can be fun and easy! Keep it positive and ensure you and your pup are safe throughout the process. 

At this point your pup will likely be far past house training but sometimes around the cusp of adulthood we may start to see marking behaviours in our dogs. One great way to curb this behaviour is to introduce a positive interrupter, it’s important to remember that if you do deal with marking, don’t punish the behaviour.

If you haven’t already, talk to your vet about spaying and neutering your pup, and remember to always have fun with your dogs!

Continue your training journey with all the how-to questions of having a dog! 



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