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Puppy Milestone: When Do Puppies Begin Walking?

Newborn puppies are completely dependent on their mothers for care and feeding. While these infants may crawl a little, they will not begin to walk until around 3 weeks of age. Dogs of this age will not stand upright, but they will soon develop the coordination they need to start running in no time.

Puppy development

At birth, a puppy only has the ability to crawl short distances to locate its mother's teats, following its sense of smell in order to feed. At around 2 weeks of age, the puppy's eyes and ears open, giving him the ability to see and hear. At about 3 weeks old (21 days of age), he and his siblings will begin to stand and walk a bit on their own. Your little one will walk slowly and unsteady for a week or so as he gains coordination.


When Do Puppies Start Walking

Walking and running

At about 4 weeks, your puppy is no longer reliant solely on his mother to keep him warm; he can now urinate and defecate on his own. About this time, but he will probably be running and playing with all his littermates. With his new independence, he will begin to play games with his siblings and learn important social behaviors. Around 5 weeks of age, your puppy will begin to explore your home area outside of his nest, so you will need to supervise him and his littermates, according to the Austin, Texas website. When he reaches 6 to 7 weeks of age, he will be able to walk, run and play with confidence.

Walking on a leash

Start training your puppy to walk on a leash when he reaches 8 to 10 weeks of age. This is the age when you can separate a puppy from its mother and littermates to rehome it. Start with a lightweight, puppy-sized collar to which you can attach a light leash, recommends the Cesar's Way website. Acclimate him to the collar and leash by giving him treats and engaging him in fun games with his favorite toys while he's wearing them. Encourage your puppy to walk on the leash by tempting him with treats and prevent him from pulling on the leash with a treat at his side.


If you have slippery floors at home, soft blankets or mats are recommended for your puppy. These items provide traction for your puppy's paws while he develops his coordination skills. It is important to begin socializing your puppy with other people and pets once he is fully mobile, but only with animals that are known to be healthy. It is important to keep in mind that your puppy will not have all of his vaccinations until he is approximately 4 months old, depending on when his first vaccination was given. It is suggested that you begin toilet training your puppy using newspapers indoors at first, gradually transitioning to outdoor training once he is fully trained to prevent him from accidentally escaping.