Baby German Shepherd Dogs are deaf, blind, mobile, and totally dependent on their moms. They gain weight quickly and become more mentally and physically fit. At 8 weeks old, they are weighing between 13-15 lbs and have learned many important social skills.
Baby German Shepherd Dog
German Shepherd Dogs have many dedicated fans and are one of the most beloved dog breeds.
As adults, they can grow to be quite large and intimidating. They are also cute and playful as puppies.
However, the majority of puppies are purchased between 8-12 weeks of age so we miss this wonderful period in their lives.
What happens in those first weeks? This article will take a look at how the German Shepherd develops from their birth to eight weeks old.
A German Shepherd Baby is Born
A typical litter of German Shepherd puppies consists around 4-8 pups. According to a 2006 study, the average German Shepherd litter size is 6.
They will have an umbilical cord and amniotic fluid attached when they are born.
The mother should remove the umbilical cord from the baby and spend the first few hours bathing the pups.
Mom will then be able to keep her newborn pups warm and allow them to nurse.
German Shepherd puppies at this stage will sleep well and not expend any energy. They will often nurse from their mother.
Newborn German Shepherds (Baby GSD Dog)
Baby German Shepherd puppies are dependent upon their mother when they are born.
They will lose the ability to hear and see and will not be able to regulate their body temperature effectively.
They will have no teeth and will be dependent on their mother’s milk for nutrition.
A coat is essential. The color of the coat will depend on their genes. This breed is most commonly black with tan markings.
They will also be very immobile. They won’t be able to support their weight. They will crawl on their stomachs to move around.
They won’t be able to urinate and defecate by themselves. To help them use the toilet, they will need to be stimulated by their mother.
One week old Baby German shepherd Dog
The puppies will gain weight in the first week and should double their birth weight.
Their behavior will not change much. They will continue to be primarily focused on sleeping and nursing.
The puppies cuddle together to keep warm. They will be deaf and blind at this stage.
Baby German Shepherd Dog Two Weeks Old
These puppies reached an important milestone in their second week of existence!
This is when the baby German Shepherd’s first eyes open. This is a significant step, even though they cannot see well.
At around 10-14 days old, the eyes should open for their first time. They will initially appear blue, but they will develop into brown.
With their improved eyesight, they may be more curious about the world around them and may even start to crawl.
During this week, a 5-10% increase in bodyweight is to be expected as they continue to grow quickly.
Baby German Shepherd Dog Three Weeks Old
Three weeks old, the baby German Shepherds enter a phase of rapid growth. At this stage, we can expect them to make big strides.
Their ears should open for the first times around 14-18 days of age. They should be able to see and hear but not very clearly.
Over the next few weeks, their senses will continue developing. It is worth noting that their eyes will transition from the cloudy, blue to brown color around this time.
They will be able stand up and support their weight. It may be difficult to walk, however. They’ll likely be a bit wobbly.
At this point, you can expect to see your baby teeth. They will start to take an interest in solid foods, even though they continue to get most of their nutrition from mom.
At this point, they will be able to defecate and urinate on their own.
Beginning Of Socialization of Baby GSD Dog
They will likely show some sight and hearing and be able to explore their surroundings with their unsteady gait.
This milestone marks the start of the socialization phase, which is a crucial stage in their development. The lessons they learn now will shape their behavior and personality for the rest their lives.
They might engage other puppies in clumsy play or show body language like tail wagging, for the first time.
Four-week-old Baby German Shepherd Dog
The German Shepherd puppies should reach this age. They will develop relationships with their mother, den mates, and other humans.
This is crucial in getting puppies to be comfortable with humans. You can do this by gently exposing them to humans and contact, so they feel safe.
Their brains are still developing, but they can still learn basic concepts. At this age, potty and crate training can be started.
They should be able walk quite well now. They will be able to play with their families and explore their surroundings.
Their baby teeth should be completely formed by now and the weaning process should begin. They should be given soft, but not hard food.
Five-week-old Baby German Shepherd Dog
The German Shepherd puppies will continue growing in size, mobility, and social skills at this age.
They might show more complex social behavior towards other den mates and should be taught important skills such as bite inhibition.
Socialization should continue with puppies being gently exposed to new people, sights and sounds.
Baby German Shepherd Dog, Six Weeks Old
You will start to notice the puppies becoming more independent from their mother at this age.
Although they may not be ready to leave their den yet, they will soon be fully weaned from their mother’s milk at this point and can start eating puppy food.
Six-week-old puppies love to play and are rapidly learning social skills.
German Shepherds will gain 1.5-2.25 pounds per week from this age and continue to grow.
Seven-week-old Baby German Shepherd Dog
The fear period is the next significant stage of their development as they enter the seventh week.
This may sound alarming, but it is actually a sign that puppies start to be afraid of new things.
These are things that can cause a puppy to feel scared or uneasy and could have a major impact on their personality later in life.
A puppy may become fearful or distrustful of people if they have had a bad experience at this age with humans.
It is therefore important to expose the puppies to people and other common sounds and sights before they arrive.
We can make this transition easier by preemptively socializing puppies with their humans.
Eight Weeks Old, Baby German Shepherd Dog
The German Shepherd puppies at this age are ready for their new homes! They will be approximately 13-15 lbs in weight and about 6-9 inches in height.
They will initially lie flat on their ears, but they should start to stand up and be upright in the next few weeks.
At this point, they will be completely independent from their mother. They should be fully weaned and given some training and socialization.
As they are still in a critical stage of development, their new owners will need to continue to socialize and train them. Potty training, and Dealing with German Shepherd’s mouthiness is key.
The German Shepherd puppy’s new owners will need to make sure that the dog is getting a healthy, balanced diet.
You can find more information in our complete puppy development guide.
We hope you found this article helpful in understanding the origins of the German Shepherd.
Do you have any experience with raising German Shepherd puppies? Please let us know by commenting below!