The growth peak is the moment that separates the 2 phases of growth. During the first phase, growth is intense and quick, during the second phase, growth slows down.
At the growth peak, the puppy has already achieved his adult height, but only 2/3rd of his adult weight. Bone development is almost finished and the puppy must now develop his muscle mass.
The growth peak is hardly visible in Toy and Small breeds, it can be considered that their growth is linear and its duration is around 10 months.
In larger breeds, the growth peak occurs between 6 and 8 months of age, depending on the breed size, for a total growth duration of 12 to 24 months.
The puppy’s needs are different before and after the growth peak.
Before the growth peak, the puppy’s energy need is very high to ensure the development of all tissues. At the time of weaning, around 2 months, it’s 2 times higher than the energy need of an adult dog with the same BW. At the growth peak, it’s 1.5 times higher and then it decreases progressively until adulthood.