What to expect at 5 months

Written by: Kassie Dickson, CDBC, CPDT-KA

Your pup is about to check his furry boundaries. Be consistent, follow-through, and be the life of the doggie party. Your dog is going to be testing you. Dogs are some of the smartest and most opportunistic creatures out there. If they see an opportunity, they will seize it faster than you will realize. 

However, the good news is that your dog is also willing to learn. Work on your loose-leash skills, practice a new behavior, & solidify your recall. Keep your puppy engaged, use healthy dog management, and structure to help your puppy understand that the rules are still the same.

Start to look at spay/neuter options for your puppy. At the time of surgery, your dog’s age, weight, and breed may affect any medical tests that need to be performed or influence the cost of the surgery. Always consult your vet for the best advice.


Keep your puppy on a leash while they are testing those boundaries. Having a six-feet guarantee is the best policy to ensure you have optimal control of your puppy, and that they are appropriately responding to cues when they are out and about in the world. This will help to generalize and solidify all their newly learned behaviors. 



Start by slowly increasing the duration of stay by marking and rewarding at random intervals. Release your puppy following their release-cue rules!


It is a cue to tell your pup: it’s time to get up, or the coast is clear to go.

Always stay still when you give your cue. Do not move away or your pup may follow you, and learn that when you leave it means “get up”! Give your cue once…then wait! The more they hear the same word the less it means. When your pup does release, have a party: pet, play and love them, throw a ball, or play some tug.

Real-life rewards should be a part of your pup's reward repertoire.


Keep up with socialization and socializing. Socialization is the process of learning where as socializing is the act of interacting. Both are very important to your pup! There’s still a whole wide world for your pup to explore.

- Kassie Dickson, CPDT-KA


For chews catered to your pup's growing age, have a look at Super PawBox for dog toys, treats, and more!

Walk through the next stage of puppyhood with What to Expect at 6 Months.



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