Lhasa Apso Progression: Growth Chart, Milestones, and Training Tips

Written by Kristin Hitchcock
Published: October 23, 2023
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Lhasa Apso Summary

Lhasa Apso are a small, ancient breed of dog known for their distinctive appearance. They originally came from Tibet and have very long coats requiring consistent grooming to prevent matting. These dogs are also known for being pretty independent and loyal, making them great companions for families seeking a smaller companion.

Lhasa Apso Growth and Weight Chart by Age

2 months3 – 6 pounds
3 months4 – 7 pounds
4 months5 – 8 pounds
6 months6 – 10 pounds
9 months7 – 12 pounds
12 months8 – 14 pounds
18 months12 – 16 pounds

Remember, the exact weight of a Lhasa Apso can vary. However, most do fall within this range. Males and females do not have significant weight differences.

When Will My Lhasa Apso Stop Growing?

Lhasa Apsos usually reach their full height around 12 months of age. However, they may continue to gain some weight in muscle and fat for several months. Dogs often reach their full height and remain rather “skinny” for several months. By 18 months, they are generally considered full-grown.

However, they may continue developing mentally for several months. Often, these dogs aren’t considered mature temperament-wise until 2 years old.

Of course, different dogs develop at different rates. Dogs also have growth spurts, so they may be slightly underweight only to catch back up quickly.

How Big Will My Lhasa Apso Be When It’s Fully Grown?

Dog, Long Hair, Lhasa Apso, Long, Animal Hair

Lhasa Apsos are pretty small dogs, but they have

a lot

of hair.


When a Lhasa Apso is fully grown, it typically stands around 10 to 11 inches at the shoulder and weighs around 12 to 18 pounds. However, some individuals can fall out of this range (though it wouldn’t be breed-standard).

Genetics and overall health will affect the dog’s final size. If you want to have a more precise estimate for your Lhasa Apso’s adult size, it’s best to consult with a veterinarian or breeder who may have information on the dog’s lineage.

When Should My Lhasa Apso Be Spayed or Neutered?

There is a lot of debate on when to spay and neuter dogs. In many cases, early spaying and neutering are recommended – often before 6 months of age. Some may even recommend doing it earlier, towards 5 months of age, as these dogs tend to reach sexual maturity quickly.

Early spaying and neutering prevent unintended pregnancies, which can be very hard for female dogs at this early age. Furthermore, many dogs can get pregnant before their owners even realize they’ve reached sexual maturity.

However, early spaying and neutering can lead to growth problems, particularly in older dogs. The lack of growth hormones can lead to bone growth issues. That said, these dogs are small and usually do not run into these problems. Therefore, it’s much more common for them to get spayed or neutered early.

We recommend consulting with your vet about the best option for your dog.

When Should My Lhasa Apso Be House Broken?

You should begin housebreaking your Lhasa Apso as soon as you bring them home, preferably around 8 to 10 weeks old. It’s easier to develop this habit early rather than break bad habits later. Some breeders even start housebreaking their puppies before they’re separated from their mother, so you’ll need to continue this process.

Consistency is key in this process. You need to take your dog to the designated potty spot outside at regular intervals. After meal times, playtime, and upon waking are the most important times to take your dog outside.

When your Lhasa Apso goes outside properly, reward them with treats and praise. Positive reinforcement teaches your dog to go potty in the right place and associates going outside with positive emotions.

Between potty trips, you should supervise your dog closely. Look for signs that they need to go out, like circling, whining, and sniffing. If you catch your dog in the act, take them outside right away. Don’t punish them; this may only make them hide when they need to go (which is the opposite of what you want them to do).

Crate train your dog to make supervision a bit easier. When you can’t watch your puppy, put them in the crate. Dogs don’t like to eliminate where they sleep, so they will often “hold it” until they are taken back outside.

Housebreaking requires a lot of time and patience. Be prepared for accidents, but these should decrease over time.

When Should My Lhasa Apso Stop Eating Puppy Food?

Your Lhasa Apso should eat puppy food until they stop growing. Usually, this is around 12 to 18 months of age. You may even need to transition them earlier if they are a smaller Lhasa Apso, as some may reach their full height closer to 10 months.

Smaller dogs tend to mature faster than larger dogs, so you’ll need to keep an eye on your puppy’s weight specifically. An all-around suggestion won’t be accurate for all dogs.

You can consult your vet for the best time to transition your dog. Your vet will be able to weigh them accurately and determine if they have reached their full weight.

When transitioning your puppy, you should do so gradually. Otherwise, you may end up with a puppy with an upset stomach. Start by mixing a small amount of the new adult food with the puppy food and gradually increase the proportion of adult food while decreasing the puppy food.

Of course, be sure you choose a high-quality dog food that meets your dog’s needs. They’ll likely need small-breed food.

When Will My Lhasa Apso Start Losing Teeth?

All dogs start losing their teeth at around 3 to 4 months of age – and they continue to lose them until around 6 months old. You may notice loose teeth or teeth falling out. During this period, it’s crucial to provide appropriate chew toys to help relieve any discomfort and aid in the teething process.

However, by 6 months, most dogs will be done losing their baby teeth and should have their full set of adult teeth. You should start brushing your dog’s teeth at this point if you haven’t already.

As smaller dogs, Lhasa Apso can be prone to dental issues. Therefore, it’s important to watch for retained baby teeth (which can cause issues) and keep their teeth as clean as possible.

When Should I Start Training My Lhasa Apso?

You should begin training your Lhasa Apso as soon as they come into your home. It’s important that you start teaching your dog good habits right away. Keep the sessions short and positive. Also, focus on correct behaviors around the house, like teaching your dog not to jump on people.

Teaching good habits is also training, even though it probably won’t occur solely in a training session.

Socialization is also exceptionally important. You should expose your dog to many different places, people, and animals at a young age. Well-adjusted and confident adult dogs are well-socialized.

Begin housebreaking (potty training) as soon as you bring your puppy home, typically around 8 to 10 weeks of age. Consistency and patience are key during this process. Dogs are going to have accidents, and it is important to prepare for this eventuality.

We highly recommend introducing your puppy to crate training pretty early. This process provides your dog with a comfortable, safe space to rest and teaches them that it’s okay to be alone.

Always use positive reinforcement to teach your dog manners and behaviors, like treats and praise. You may also want to consider professional training. Group puppy classes provide your canine with socialization and introduce them to some very basic training.

What Cues Should I Teach My Lhasa Apso First?

Like with any dog, you should start with the easiest cues first. There are some cues that other commands build off of, too. Here is a basic order you should consider teaching your puppy in:

  • Sit: Teaching your dog to sit is one of the most fundamental commands. It’s a great starting point for training, and it has lots of practical applications.
  • Stay: The “stay” command is important for keeping your dog in one place until you release them. This command takes a long time to teach, but it’s important to start it early.
  • Come: You should also teach your dog to “come.” Often, you can do this at the same time you’re teaching the previous two commands.
  • Down: “Down” is also important. It can help put your dog in a more controllable position. Some dogs find “stay” in this condition easier.
  • Leave It: Every dog needs to learn to “leave it.” It’s crucial for preventing your dog from picking up or eating potentially harmful items. You can also use it to keep them from bothering someone they shouldn’t be.
  • Off: Teach your Lhasa Apso to get off furniture or people when you say “off.” This command helps teach good manners, though it isn’t as vital as the others.
  • Heel: To help your dog walk well on a leash, teach them to walk by your hip with the “heel” command. Sometimes, this is also called “loose leash walking.”

Preferably, you should keep sessions short and relatively simple. You can work on more than one command at once but don’t make it too complicated. Don’t forget to move commands from the training sessions and into the real world as soon as your dog is ready!

When Will My Lhasa Apso Calm Down?

Lhasa Apsos are pretty independent dogs, but they don’t tend to be exceptionally hyper. They will lose their puppy-like energy eventually, often when they reach physical maturity. Usually, this happens around 12 to 18 months. These dogs typically become less hyperactive and more stable around this time.

Consistent training and socialization from a young age can also help, as it helps the dog figure out what is good behavior. Be sure to provide plenty of exercise, too. Regular exercise and playtime are crucial, or your dog may be hyperactive no matter their age.

Some individuals may also mature later than others.

Common Health Issues Your Lhasa Apso Might Experience

Lhasa Apsos are generally a healthy breed, but like all dogs, they can be prone to certain health problems. Luckily, most of these are not serious:

  • Patellar Luxation: This condition occurs when the kneecap dislocates or slips out of its normal position.
  • Hip Dysplasia: Hip Dysplasia is a genetic condition where the hip joint doesn’t develop properly. It leads to pain and arthritis.
  • Eye Problems: Lhasa Apsos are prone to eye conditions such as progressive retinal atrophy (PRA) and cataracts. Even though many are not curable, regular eye check-ups are essential to catch these conditions early.
  • Renal Dysplasia: This kidney condition is congenital, which means that dogs are born with it. Generally, it isn’t curable and can lead to kidney failure.
  • Allergies: Many dogs are prone to allergies, including Lhasa Apsos. Food and skin allergies are the most common in this breed.
  • Respiratory Issues: Due to their brachycephalic (flat-faced) structure, Lhasa Apsos may be prone to respiratory problems, especially in hot or humid weather. They may also have a harder time under anesthesia.

Pictures of Lhasa Apsos as Puppies

Cute Lhasa Apso puppy at Christmas.

Lhasa Apsos are very small puppies, as you might expect.

©Ruth Black/Shutterstock.com

Pictures of Lhasa Apsos at 6 Months

Lhasa Apso dog lying in the grass of a garden

Lhasa Apsos grow pretty fast, so they start to look like adults after only a few months of growth.

©aurelie le moigne/Shutterstock.com

Pictures of Fully Grown Lhasa Apsos

Lhasa Apso dog playing at the sea.

Lhasa Apsos have very long, flowing hair. But they do require lots of grooming.


The photo featured at the top of this post is © Eve Photography/Shutterstock.com

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About the Author

Kristin is a writer at A-Z Animals primarily covering dogs, cats, fish, and other pets. She has been an animal writer for seven years, writing for top publications on everything from chinchilla cancer to the rise of designer dogs. She currently lives in Tennessee with her cat, dogs, and two children. When she isn't writing about pets, she enjoys hiking and crocheting.

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