Thursday, June 5, 2014

Progression of a Cockapoo Puppy, Week by Week Photos

Due to the Cockapoo breed being so darn popular I often have people reserve puppies from us in advance, way before their puppy is born so that they can get ahead of the rush and get the color and sex that they desire. Quite often people have either had a Cockapoo, have met one of our Cockapoo puppies, or have done extensive research on the breed so they know they for sure want one and feel completely comfortable picking one out as a newborn without seeing how they grow first. If I am comfortable with a family I have no problem with them doing this but I always try to explain that when a puppy is first born I am not able to answer questions about their coat texture, the color of their eyes or noses, or anything about their personality, they are simply too young and all of that takes time to develop as the puppy grows. Like I said, most people are totally fine with that because they know how well the breed is but I do still get some people who want to know things that are just too hard to answer at a certain age so I have been photographing a puppy as he has grown to help show people how they progress over time, I hope this helps to better explain how the puppies change and develop over time.

The pictures above are of a Red Male Cockapoo that is less than 24 hours old. As you can see his coat is very flat and smooth, his eyes are closed, his skin is bright pink in some spots and his nose is a mix of pink and black, and not all of his hair is developed in places like the top of his nose and eyebrows. When I send people pictures of the babies this young they often ask me what their coats are going to look like and my answer is that it takes several weeks for it to develop. I don't have any way of knowing 100% how much texture his coat will have until it comes in. I also have people ask what color their noses will be and if a puppy is born with a black nose it will stay that way, if a puppy is born with a pink nose it can either turn darker pink or also turn black, this also takes some time. Because this puppy has a mix of colors on his nose I would guess that it will turn black. Their eyes don't open for about 2.5-3 weeks and when they do they are a cloudy blue/gray color, their true color comes later and usually they have brown eyes but we also get ones with Blue or Green eyes, it all depends on the color in their background. I have also had people ask me about personalities at this age and at this stage the puppies mostly eat, sleep, and go to the bathroom so there is not much to say about personality at this point. We sometimes have families want to visit and view the puppies before they pick one out and we do not allow them to come when the babies are this young, they are not vaccinated, need to be with their mom, and really there is not much to see other than what they look like which can be done by photos.



In the pictures above the puppy is now one week old and you can already see some differences in him compared to the earlier photos. All of his skin that was previously pink or a mix of black and pink has turned black and will stay that way. His hair on top of his nose and eyebrows has grown in more and you can see a texture starting to develop in his coat. His eyes are still closed and he still continues to spend most of his time eating, sleeping, and going to the bathroom. At this age we still do not allow visits, we like to wait until the babies begin receiving their vaccines before exposing them to people to try and keep them as healthy as possible.


In the pictures above the puppy is now 15 days old and his eyes have begun to open! His coat has grown longer and thicker and you can see even more texture throughout it as well. He is now starting to crawl around a bit and responds well to being held and having his belly rubbed.




In the photos above the puppy is now three and a half weeks old and has really begun to change. He went from a sleepy blob to looking and acting like a puppy! His eyes are fully opened now, his coat has even more texture and he's much more active. These were the first photos I got of him sitting up, he's beginning to walk around a bit now and responds to me by wagging his tail and kicking his little foot when I get the right spot on his belly. We will soon begin feeding him and his litter softened food so they can start getting used to that and give mom a break from nursing.




In the photos above he is now a bit over four weeks old and is getting more photogenic and active every day. When I first begin to take their photos they rarely pay attention to me, they crawl around and explore and are sometimes afraid of the noise of the camera but at this age he is responding to the sounds I make and poses great for the camera. He and his litter mates are eating soft food very well now, drinking water, beginning to play more, and starting to chew on things as their teeth develop. His coat is beautiful and his eyes are brown. Mom is still spending time with them but likes to take longer breaks from them as she begins her weaning process.




In the photos above he is a little over 5 weeks old and we were playing outside because the sun finally came out, but as you can see, sunlight fades their color and always makes them look lighter. Now that he's older you can really see the nice texture that has develop throughout his coat, much different from the first pictures I took when he was a newborn. At this age he is active, playful, loving, and everything you would expect in a puppy. He is now eating regular puppy food (no longer softened,) drinking water on his own and is getting ready to be weaned from mom. He plays with toys, wrestles with his siblings, and follows at my feet making good photos hard to get! They are very curious at this age and want to see and get into everything. Soon he will begin to receive his vaccines and then, if we have any available for sale at this age, we allow people to come for visits, all by appointment,  if and when we have some free time.






In the photos above he is about six and a half weeks old and will be leaving for his new home in a few days. As you can see, he is gorgeous!! His coat is has a soft and silky fluffy wave to it, his nose has stayed black, and his soft brown eyes are super sweet. Photos at this age are really hard to get because, even though they like to explore, Cockapoos are people puppies and they follow at your feet. The bottom picture where he is standing on my foot is a great example of what happens when I take them out for photo sessions. You may notice that he looks different colors in the pictures, that is because it all depends on whether I take them indoors or outdoors and what type of lighting I take them in. At this age he has begun to receive his vaccines, has been vet checked, and is fully weaned from mom. He and his siblings are eating regular puppy food (no longer softened,) are teething like crazy so we give them bones and pig ears to chew on, and they love, love, love to wrestle, run around, get belly rubs, and play with their toys. He loves people and your lap is his favorite place to be :)
I know I've already said this a million times to people and on my website but if you are very specific in what you are looking for in terms of color, coat, and eyes please let the babies grow and develop before you adopt one! Even though I am the breeder, own the parents, and have lots of experience I am not able to predict exactly what a newborn puppy will look like as an adult. Just like human children, baby puppies take time to grow and develop, so at 2 days old I cannot tell you what style of coat they will have or what their personality is like. As you've seen in the pictures above coat styles take several weeks to develop and even at 8 weeks when a puppy goes home they will still continue to grow and change. The last thing I want is someone to have buyers remorse because they picked out a puppy at a young age and they didn't turn out to have the type of style they were looking for. It's important to me that my puppies go to forever homes and are not loved simply based on their coat styles.