My husband and I raised two pit bull puppies and it taught me a lot about what it takes to raise these wonderful dogs.
Do you have a pit bull about to whelp her puppies? Are you planning on breeding your bully? Do you need to know what kind of responsibility or work this will take on your part as the responsible owner?
Read here for helpful information on the first six weeks of a pit bull pup's life, with tips and instructions for each stage. I've also included pictures of nine healthy babies, all born between 3 am and 9 am on December 31st, 2010. There were four black and brown (three of those males, one female), and three honey-colored (one male, two females). There was also one white female and one brindle male.
For the next seven days, expect the pups to eat, sleep, poop, and not much else. What's important at this stage is to be careful with the mother.
If you feel like your nursing mother is overly stressed, consult with a vet on a natural remedy to relax her. The coming weeks are going to be highly taxing on her body. She will need all of the help she can get to reduce fat-burning anxiety.
If the mom was overexcited or overprotective initially, some of that will begin to die down by the end of this first week. However, this does not mean that it's time to invite over all of the small children in the family to maul the pups in front of her. Give them another week to grow used to simple survival while the mother can grow used to managing her protective instincts against the noise and chaos of the home, even if minor.
The second week will not differ much from the first with the exception of the pups spending a bit more time awake and a little less time eating (but they'll also have more vigorous eating habits). Pups are already starting to battle at this point, albeit with closed eyes, for the best position on the teats when mom jumps in the box.
As the third week begins, there will be many more waking hours than sleeping hours, as opposed to the last two weeks. Most will have their eyes mostly open, although none can see too well, but they will start to recognize the smell of mom when she's close, and people visiting their box or enclosure.
When we retrieved a riding lawnmower box from a local store, the mom actually jumped for joy several times in the air as I began placing them in the new blanket-filled box. Seriously, do both of you a favor and get them enclosed ASAP if not done so already by this week.
By the end of the third week, there will be no doubt that living in a box with so many of your siblings can be really hard. Many mini growls and burks (not quite barks) are heard coming from the box at all hours. Closer observation reveals a painfully slow (at least from their point-of-view) process of growing, fighting, eating, and yes, pooping.
You may need some tips on how to do this. This does get nasty. Personally, I have what I consider a fairly strong stomach. But the results of nine pit bull pups moshing, rolling, and rooting around in a pile of gooey mess still required me to give it a good strong swallow or two while watching.
Everyone has a different set-up, but according to what you have available, here are the best suggestions I have on managing these feedings without needing to spend hours cleaning, crying and growing your slang/rant vocabulary twice a day.
If you are going to feed on the floor, plan to do two things.
The floor certainly isn't the ideal method. The garden tub or a walk-in shower are far more ideal (with a detachable shower head for quick clean up). However, the other methods will work, and ultimately, you will really come to rely on creating a sort of ritual when doing the feedings so that everyone, even Uncle Eddie, my litter of pup's stepdaddy, gets to participate in the cleanup.
Also, be sure to sanitize the feeding area after each feeding. Even if you feed them in a box, sprucing up, applying Lysol and a light bleach wash will kill the germs and ensure a cleaner surface for the next feeding. For tubs, a quick bleach wash is usually enough.
There sure is a lot of milling around.
These pups are some incredible beasts. Seriously, the most ornery, amusing, mushy sweet, clumsy, wobbly-headed, thick-skinned, love muffins around.
When they aren't testing out their burk-to-barking skills, they are amok, flopping from the box at high rates. I am fairly sure they have learned to 'take one for the team' by letting other puppies stand atop them, so they have a better chance at springing at least a few of their box mates. For most Pit pups who have been weaned on this schedule, this week may be their last in your home.
Never, EVER breed an aggressive animal. Just like people, character traits are passed on from parents, and although you may think it's humorous that your 70 lb Pit bull female viciously attacks the vacuum cleaner each time you run it, it is not a sign of quality temperament. Please, for the sake of this breed, do what you can do help breed out aggressiveness, not in.
Crating is not cruel! Personally, I don't crate my dogs. I don't have to. Not yet anyway, time will tell with these two growing pups. It will depend entirely on their destructive tendencies versus their ability to deal well with my grown dogs for extended periods of time. However, crating can be necessary, even a comfort to some grown dogs such as rescues. While other rescues may prefer death to a crate, it is all about the dog.
However, if you are an apartment dweller, or work long periods of time, have small children or animals about, crating may be the perfect option for helping any age dog grow accustomed to your family, from a place safe for all.
I knew it would happen. I am a softy but my husband is far softer when it comes to animals. He lauds himself as somewhat of a pied-piper for dogs. And it is true, they do march around behind him wherever he goes, and they do maul him, and each other for his attention when he has been at work all day, or outside for more than five minutes.
We miss her!
Luna was just crazy. Luna lived to the age of nine months. She died after her alteration surgery, due to the clinic not cleaning well enough after parvo dogs had been seen there. We did win our suit and get our money returned to us for the parvo treatment Apollo needed. He got sick first. He was sick for almost 2 full weeks, just wanting to die, we forced him to live.
Luna didn't show signs of parvo as Apollo had. She basically only showed signs of distress about 12 hours before she died. It was the most heart-wrenching thing I have ever watched.
In the photo above, Apollo was full into his illness, very sick and ears pulled straight back, Luna was comforting him. She was gone not even 14 hours after this picture was taken. Parvo can be horribly slow or painfully fast.
I dedicated this to Luna, Crazy Luna Baby. The sweetest love muffin we ever had!
Apollo certainly resembles his baby self. Obviously, the GSD in him is more apparent than in Abby or Pandora. He is literally a barrel, and a goofy mess.
He hates being messed with when he is sleeping and has taken on an obvious need to be protective towards my husband and I since he recovered from Parvo.
How'd this happen?!
This is what happens when and why you should never breed dogs. When our rescue Pandora had her litter, it was so wrenching to let these puppies go, even though to seemingly good people. You still always wonder if they will end up in the pound, or tethered and unloved.
Rescue, rescue, rescue. This was the last litter of puppies I will ever deal with again. Sadly, altering Luna cost her her life. But her having an unexpected litter would have cost many lives most likely, especially with the Pit Bull mix in them.
One of the puppies we sold, named Abbey, by her owner, popped up on my Facebook wall one day with her owner asking if anyone could take her. I was astounded, but I immediately replied that I would. Not that I wanted to replace Luna, or even that I wanted another dog. But my mind could not fathom that this pup, who did mirror our Luna Baby so closely, would end up euthanized.
So about three months after Luna died. We got Abbey, dropped the extra E from her name, and made her our own. She had been outside until she got here, smelling like a skunk. Regardless, she is a part of our pack now, and we wouldn't have it any other way.
All sides of this coin are important. Though humans may be responsible for the horrible acts committed by some Pit Bulls, and some of the overhyped dog attacks are also possibly committed by Pit Bulls, the victims are still the ones who suffer. If you have laws in your state post it here for others to reference so they will NOT purchase one if they reside in those states.
© 2011 Joy Lynskey
Candis on February 26, 2020:
I have 10 one week old Pitbull puppies, about how much should they weigh right now?
yuvraj soni on June 06, 2016:
Short tail am pitbull is very good in nature but he attacks against other animal or pet thnks
Stacet on March 19, 2016:
I wish I would have found your article sooner! I am now the proud mama of 11 pit puppies. This came unexpectedly however. My neighbors dog had 11 pups in my house. The owner of the dog is too old to be caring for these rowdy puppies, so the obligation falls to me. I have no idea what I am doing and the mama dog seems to have no interest in the pups. So I am now the mama, yes all the midnight feedings and all the love comes from me. I have experience only with cats so this is definitely a new experience for me!! any good advice would be much appreciated. They are 4 weeks old and the most rambunctious things I have ever seen.
amanda on December 19, 2014:
I would love to buy one baby white pit bull for 50 dollars female and if you can please email me at this when you can at barberamanda [email protected]
Lionrhod from Orlando, FL on March 27, 2014:
Look up Sgt. Stubby, most decorated dog of all time. And Petey from Lil Rascals/Our Gang.
Joy Lynskey (author) from Vinton, Va on November 22, 2013:
@BlackAthena: I think it is okay to intervene if you are looking out for them and see that they are getting fed around every 2 hours or so. More than that isn't really necessary. I'd discourage intervention as much as possible though if you can get her moving without actual commands. You don't want her to think you don't want them fed. Try luring her out with a treat or a toy when she's given them enough feeding time. Good luck! Pit pups are fairly hearty eaters!
BlackAthena on November 09, 2013:
My boyfriends pit bull just had puppies last weekend and it seems like their CONSTANTLY feeding so much so that I'm a little concerned for the dam as well as the smaller pups( litter of 10 wowzers). Out of the 10, 3 have doubled in size since birth, as they are the greediest and bogart their way during feelings. My question is at what point should he intervene?
Joy Lynskey (author) from Vinton, Va on March 02, 2013:
@takkhisa: Thank you so much for reading!
Takkhis on March 02, 2013:
What a great lens! I am very happy to read this lens. Blessed by takkhis :)
uneasywriter lm on February 22, 2013:
Very good information about Pit Bulls. Thank you
Eric Mayo on February 22, 2013:
Pit bull are the most loyal family dogs in the world. Unfortunately the very same traits that make them great friends are misused. I have owned two.
EbooksFreeWeekl1 on August 19, 2012:
I think that the media may have jaded peoples' feelings prior to owning them. Now I, for example, experience the loyalty and warmth these dogs with good owners display :) Great lens!
glenbrook on January 27, 2012:
Great lens. The smartest, best behaved dog I ever had was a pit bull.
Joy Lynskey (author) from Vinton, Va on January 25, 2012:
@kathysart: Agreed Kathy! Thanks so much for the blessing!
kathysart on January 20, 2012:
No I don't but YOU have it all into perspective.. ya gotta raise them right. Angel blessed lens.
marlene3 on November 14, 2011:
Nice Lens & They are so totally adorable. Thumbs up!
Joy Lynskey (author) from Vinton, Va on November 05, 2011:
@gamecheathub: Actually only one of my dogs eats a lot of food. Most of the others eat less than my cat eats! I actually did just buy a video cam and am in the process of getting videos of them!
gamecheathub on November 05, 2011:
I bet those puppies eat gargantuan amounts of dog food! They are cute! Do you have any videos of them now?
Do you have a Pitbull puppy? Well, if you have a pitbull puppy and this is your first time to have it, perhaps it will be a little bit confused for you about their growth. When you find that in 8 weeks old of your puppy, perhaps you feel worried. Is it normal for this kind of dog to have this weight? Is it healthy enough for this dog to have this weight? In this article, we are going to discuss about pitbull puppy growth.
Same as the other animals, pitbull also has several stages of its development. If you have a pitbull puppy that is 8 week and now you want to know about your 8 week pitbull puppy weight, well you can scale it. The normal weight of pitbull in this age is around 6 to 10 pounds. You have to keep it on the good food, and make sure that the puppy gets a lot of sunlight because it is still in a process of growing. The age of 7 to 12 weeks, you should let the puppy attend classes or be home schooled in obedience and simple commands. Giving a lot of socialization is also important. You have to note that at first a pit bull puppy perhaps can be afraid of humans but it will learn the fun and benefits of contact and interaction with people quickly. So, giving a lot of play time will be good for it.
Then, when the puppy is 4 months old, you also want to know the 4 month old pitbull puppy weight that is normal. The normal weight of pitbull puppy at this age is around 25 to 50 lbs. The age of 12 to 16 weeks, your puppy will be more independent. It also will be more protective and territorial and have a stronger resurgence. Besides, it will be more shy, apprehensive and timid around new people and its coat will start to be replaced with its adult coat, starting along the spine. Its adult teeth will also be coming in and your puppy will begin chewing anything that it can get. So, you have to put everything carefully because it can chew your stuff as well. Just give it a suitable chew bones or toys for it to teethe on.
Then, how about the 5 month old pitbull puppy weight that is normal? Well, in this age, around 25 to 50 lbs is also still normal. In this age, your puppy will continue to mature and grow at a rate that is astounding. The puppy perhaps will escalate testing your authority in this stage. So, you need to do is to stay consistent and firm in teaching it that is boss by firmly scolding it for bad behaviour and give it reward if it does good behaviour. Besides, just go on with socialization skills and teach it some commands like getting into its crate or going outdoors. Remember, never encourage mouthing or biting because it can lead to a big problem.
Pit bull puppies are warm, cuddly blank slates. Raising a well-mannered, good-tempered dog is a challenge for any owner. If you study facts about your breed, do research regarding the care and training of pit bulls and follow the experts' advice, you will have a better chance for a great result. You will attain the satisfaction and joy of owning a loyal, calm and mature dog that you will be proud to have as a member of your household.
For more help with Pit Bull Puppies, you may also check out these articles:
There are no completely accurate ways to tell exactly how big your puppy will be as an adult.
But, you can use online Pitbull growth charts as a general guide.
Here’s a Pitbull growth chart example for medium sized dog breeds.
Remember, Pitbull growth charts can only offer a guide to your Pit puppy’s weight, as every dog is different.
Some will weigh much more than 38 pounds as adults, but some might weigh less. The most important thing is that they are healthy.
Your vet is the best person to help you assess this, as they can analyse your dog in person.
However, as a general rule, American Pitbull Terriers are fully grown by a year old. At 4 months, he will be about half of his adult height.
And at 6 months, he will be around 2 thirds of his adult weight.
2 to 6 months is when your Pitbull puppy will grow the fastest.
You may think interacting with a puppy early on only serves you — by optimizing the cuteness on all your social media channels — but, according to Siracusa, there are benefits for the puppy, too. During the first three weeks of life, a puppy is almost devoid of senses. Its eyes, ears and nose won’t work properly until week three, and they won’t respond to stimuli from humans until then, either. Puppies sleep most of the time, which is vital for a newborn's development. Nevertheless, tactile stimulation can still foster the puppy’s development.
“Tactile stimulation is something that should happen,” Siracusa says, adding that there should always be respect for the puppies’ mother. “There are actually studies that show that a few minutes of stimulation and handling the puppies favors development. It makes the puppy more resistant to stress. Whether this is the fact that the puppies are touched, or another hypothesis is that touching puppies stimulates the mom’s licking of them. Whatever it is, handling puppies is important.”
Training during this period
You won’t actually be training this adorable ball of fluff for many, many weeks, but there are ways you can set puppies up for success, specifically by exposing them to background sounds that are typical of their environment.
“They should gradually be exposed to the stimuli that will be part of their life,” says Siracusa. “For example, we see that if a dog is born in a very quiet environment, like the countryside or the suburbs, and then moves to the city [later], then there are problems adapting to the environment.”
He recommends playing smart with your puppy during this time.
“If I play with my hands and the puppy goes bananas, I know that at some point the puppy is going to bite me,” Siracusa says. “The little teeth of a puppy are really sharp they are painful! So at that point, punishing the puppy might promote some anxiety and stress for the puppy. So the best way to set the puppy up for success is, if you know the puppy is going to bite you, play with something else, not with your hand.”