If you recently adopted a Chesapeake Bay Retriever puppy, you will be eager to learn about the Chesapeake Bay Retriever growth chart.
Knowing the expected size and weight of your pup as they develop into adults is an important step to help keep them keep on track for a healthy, fulfilling life.
Chesapeake Bay Retriever is a large dog breed developed in the US in the 19th Century. The breed is known for its intelligence, affection and protective nature.
This article outlines all the essential information you need to know regarding the size and weight of a Chesapeake Bay Retriever, as well as some top tips to help you navigate the early years.
When Do Chesapeake Bay Retrievers Stop Growing?
Chessies typically stop growing at age one to one and a half years. Like all species, however, specific growth trajectory and timescale varies from each dog.
As a large dog breed, Chessies take longer to grow to full maturity compared to smaller dog breeds.
You will notice although your Chessie pup may have reached full physical maturity by one and a half years, their full mental and emotional maturity may take up to two years of age.
Genetic and environmental factors influence when your Chessie stops growing. For example, a dog suffering from stress caused by poor nutrition or owner abuse will likely grow at a slower weight than a well-looked-after puppy.
Chesapeake Bay Retriever Growth Chart
Monitoring the weight of your Chesapeake Bay Retriever is an important step you should take to ensure their long-term health.
Recorded measurements should be taken every month, while you should also visually observe your puppy every day.
The Chesapeake Bay Retriever weight chart presents the estimated weight boundaries of your puppy at monthly intervals.
Do note that the weight boundaries presented are estimates and it is perfectly normal for your Chessie pup to be marginally over or under the boundaries. All puppies grow at their own pace.
The appropriate time to seek veterinary support is when your Chessie is significantly outside the weight boundary. As a rule of thumb, anything above 15% over or under the estimate is the point where you may seek medical advice.
Male Chessies are taller and heavier than females. You should expect males to be on the upper end of the estimates, while females are on the lower end.
Chesapeake Bay Retrievers typically weigh 20-26 pounds at three months and increase significantly to 48-68 pounds at nine months.
By the time the majority of Chessies have reached full maturity at 15 months, they weigh 55 pounds to 85 pounds.
Chesapeake Bay Retriever Weight Chart
|Average weight LBS
|Average weight KG
|20 - 26 lbs
|9 - 12 kg
|35 - 50 lbs
|16 - 22 kg
|40 - 60 lbs
|18 - 27 kg
|48 - 68 lbs
|22 - 31 kg
|53 - 75 lbs
|24 - 34 kg
|55 - 77 lbs
|25 - 35 kg
|55 - 85 lbs
|25 - 38 kg
Chesapeake Bay Retriever Puppy Development Stages
Birth – 2 Weeks
Newborn Chessie puppies are yet to establish all their senses. They can taste and touch but cannot see or hear. Expect them to sleep most of the time and be reliant on their mother for warmth and milk.
Mothers play a crucial role in regulating puppy body temperature and supporting their potty needs. Breeding puppies require close attention in the first few weeks after birth to ensure the litter thrives.
3 Weeks – 12 Weeks
From 3 to 12 weeks Chessie puppies undergo a radical transformation. Expect the puppy to develop from a tiny, vulnerable newborn to a vivacious and curious young puppy.
During this period, the puppy will start crawling and vigorously wagging its tail. By the 12-week mark, Chessie pups should stand up with confidence.
Chessie puppies will develop their full senses and start to see and hear which will add significantly to their character. At 12 weeks they are also expected to teethe which is the cue to start weaning.
Good dog behaviours are learnt at the earliest stage. So as your Chessie becomes more confident and mobile, you should start teaching some obedience and social skills to help with their overall development.
4 Months – 9 Months
This is the juvenile period for a Chesapeake Bay Retriever. A Chessie pup can learn more complex commands as they reach four months, as well as understand boundaries of good and bad behavior.
During this stage of growth, Chessies should also be potty trained, preventing you from needing to wipe up any messiness indoors.
You can expect their adult coat to develop at 5 months and their baby teeth get replaced with adult teeth.
10 Months – 18 Months
During the adolescent period, Chessies reach their final adult height but expect to continue bulking out.
They will also reach full sexual maturity so consider getting your pup spayed or neutered at the earliest possible stage of adolescence.
In terms of food, Chessies can fully transition to adult food during adolescence but make sure this transition is managed slowly to ensure they can fully digest harder foods.
Be prepared as adolescent Chessies have plenty of energy so require lots of exercise and stimulation.
By 18 months Chessies emerge from adolescence into adulthood. Some Chessies may continue to bulk out for another year or so, but they will have reached physical and mental maturity.
It is important by this stage that you have established good exercise and feeding routines with your Chessie.
As they enter adulthood, don’t forget to continue monitoring their weight as this is the dimension most likely to change during their adult lives.
Continue to visit the vet regularly for check-ups to ensure any health issues are caught early.
How Big Do Chesapeake Bay Retrievers Get?
There are four easy strategies to predict the size of a Chesapeake Bay Retriever.
Firstly, reputable breeders will have the genetic history of your puppy and can show the size and weight of your pup’s ancestors.
Genetics plays a pivotal role in the physical characteristics of dogs so this is always the best first step to take if you are curious.
However, not all breeders will have this information. In that case, you can consider getting a DNA test conducted.
Most vets offer this as a paid-for service and the DNA test can provide useful genetic information about your Chessie.
Observing the paws is a free and simple way of working out if your puppy still has more growing to do. If the paws are disproportionately larger than the body, it indicates further growth is coming.
Finally, the Chesapeake Bay Retriever growth chart is another free tool you can use to monitor the size and weight of your pup.
The chart gives you month-by-month estimates and allows you to easily plot and track the growth in comparison to average trajectories. By adulthood, Chessies should reach a final weight in the region of 55 pounds to 85 pounds.
Chesapeake Bay Retriever Size Chart
The Chesapeake Bay Retriever comes in one size but expects differences in size charts between males and females.
Typically, males are slightly larger in terms of weight and height compared to females.
From the age of three months, you can expect Chessies to grow by roughly 2.66 pounds per week until they reach adulthood.
Male Chessies expect to reach a final weight in the range of 65 to 80 pounds and a height of 23 to 26 inches. Females will reach a final weight of 55 to 70 pounds and a height of 21 to 24 inches.
You can measure your Chessie at home with a tape measure. Get your pup to stand straight on a flat surface and measure from their withers to the ground. The withers are located between the shoulder blades.
Will Neutering/Spaying My Chesapeake Bay Retriever Affect His Growth?
To protect against health conditions such as testicular or ovarian cancer, spaying or neutering is recommended.
Spaying removes the ovaries from a female dog, while neutering removes the testicles from a male dog. These are common and simple procedures which will protect your pup in the long run.
The procedure also calms your dog during adolescence and reduces aggressive behavior.
Timing of the procedure is important as it could risk stunted development if down too early. Reproductive and growth hormones work in tandem so avoid this risk.
For Chesapeake Bay Retrievers, the spaying or neutering process can take place between six and nine months. Recommendations may vary so speak to your vet for confirmation.
Labrador vs Chesapeake Bay Retriever Size
Although the two breeds have no relation, they are very similar in size. Chesapeake Bay Retrievers are however slightly taller than Labrador’s on average.
Chessies range between 21 and 26 inches in height, while Labrador’s range from 21.5 to 24.5 inches.
When it comes to weight, the two breeds are very similar, ranging from 65 to 80 pounds for males and 55 to 70 pounds for females.
In terms of other differences, Chessies typically have a deeper and thicker chest compared to Labrador.
Factors That Affect Chesapeake Bay Retriever Growth
The section below highlights some known factors affecting the growth trajectory of Chesapeake Bay Retrievers.
Genetics & Gender
The growth of Chesapeake Bay Retrievers is heavily linked to genetics, while gender will also affect size as males are typically taller and heavier than females.
Genetic information is passed from parents to their offspring to puppies, so expect puppies to resemble their parent characteristics.
Included in the genetic transfer is medical history so you should get the medical history of the parents of your Chessie pup to check for any potential hereditary health concerns.
You are what you eat. Nutrition is a factor, within the control of dog owners, that significantly affects the Chesapeake Bay Retriever growth chart.
Providing your puppy with a balanced diet, rich in protein, healthy fats and vitamins will go a long way to securing healthy growth.
Take time to research foods that may harm your dog. Also, observe your dog whenever they are trying new food to see if there is any adverse reaction.
Physical Activity & Health
Physical activity is crucial to enabling a happy and healthy life. Throughout the growth years, you should encourage regular physical activity with your Chessie. This will allow them to sufficiently burn calories and digest food well.
Chessies typically need 20 to 40 minutes of intense exercise each day. This may include running, jumping or climbing.
An additional hour of low-intensity exercise such as walking is also recommended. During adolescence, be cautious over overexercising as this may cause muscle strain.
How Much To Feed A Growing Chesapeake Bay Retriever Puppy?
The amount of food you serve your Chessie is dependent on their age and weight. You will notice as they grow, their appetite will increase exponentially as they become active adults.
By two months, Chessies can start to eat kibble in small amounts of 0.3 cups, three times a day.
By six months of age, your pup will have grown significantly to around 40 pounds. At this stage, they will need 0.5 cups, three times a day.
As they reach adolescence at nine months, one full cup served twice per day will suffice and this increases to 1.25 cups twice a day at 12 months.
You should carefully monitor your pup’s appetite and eating habits and adjust the portions accordingly. Crucially, create a stable routine so that your pup’s food expectations can be met each day.
How To Tell If Your Chesapeake Bay Retriever Is Underweight Or
Underlying health issues typically cause a dog to be underweight or overweight. If measures are not taken to ensure your dog reaches a healthy weight, there is a chance it can develop more serious health issues.
For many dog owners, recognising if their dog is underweight or overweight can be a challenge. As weight gain or loss can be gradual, it may escape the eye.
It is best to be proactive and conduct physical checks in addition to a growth chart, to check your dog’s weight.
There are simple checks all owners can do; these are outlined below.
- Feel your dog’s ribs – stand your Chessie up and run your hands along their sides. If you’re unable to feel their ribs due to obstructing fat, they are overweight. Likewise, if you feel too much rib with skin lacking, your dog is underweight.
- Feel the spine – the same test of the ribs can be applied to the spine. You should run your hands gently and be able to feel the spinal cord but the bones should not be protruding. A pronounced spine with little or no flesh is a clear sign of being underweight, while if there appears significant fat sitting on the spine, your dog is overweight.
What Are The Most Common Conditions To Be Aware Of In Growing Chesapeake Bay Retriever Puppies?
As your Chessie pup grows, there are certain health conditions to be aware of. As Chessies are active dogs, common health issues are related to joint issues such as hip or elbow dysplasia and luxating patellas.
These health issues can lead to arthritis and cause severe pain as your pup matures.
Other common issues for puppies include portosystemic shunt which relates to abnormal blood circulation and urolithiasis which causes stone formation in urine.
Obesity is always possible and should be monitored closely by Chessie dog owners.
Do Chesapeake Bay Retrievers Experience Growing Pain?
As with all dogs, Chessies can encounter growing pain during adolescence. Common causes of growing pain may be orthopaedic issues such as hip dysplasia and osteochondrosis.
They may also have been playing too much as they become curious adults.
Growing pain can cause difficulty in everyday activities such as jumping or walking. You may notice your Chessie limping or suffering abnormal gait.
If you notice these signs, alongside swelling, pain, appetite loss or heat around the joints, you should consider visiting the vet for an examination.
What To Do If My Chesapeake Bay Retriever Is Not The Right Weight?
If the weight of your Chessie is not within the limit according to their age in the weight chart, then they are likely overweight or underweight.
Take regular measurements and compare them against the weight chart to confirm.
If you’ve established your Chessie is significantly overweight you should take them to a vet for a check-up. A significant deviation in weight from the average may be a sign of an underlying health condition.
If you are given the all-clear regarding underlying health issues, your vet may give exercise or nutritional recommendations to help your pup back to a healthy weight.
Mostly, recommendations will involve amending food portions, increasing or decreasing exercise levels, and supplementing their diet.
How To Help Your Chesapeake Bay Retriever Lose Weight If He Is Overweight?
If your Chessie is overweight and does not have any underlying health issues, two strategies are recommended: exercise and nutrition.
In terms of exercise, you can consider some of the following:
- Brisk walking,
- Slow walking for 30 minutes to 1 hour or more,
- Short run with you on foot or by bike,
- Open water swimming,
- Fetch, ball games or frisbee,
- Agility sessions.
There are also lots of dog-friendly exercise sessions on YouTube which are worth checking out.
The other strategy is nutrition and diet. The increase in calories through exercise must be healthily matched with a decrease in calorie intake.
Ultimately, the goal is a calorie deficit where the amount of daily calories lost exceeds the number of calories gained.
You do not want to starve your dog, so slowly reduce the amount of food you provide so that they don’t notice. Also, ensure you are feeding your Chessie good quality food with balanced nutrition.
How To Properly Weight My Chesapeake Bay Retriever?
At a minimum, you should weigh your Chesapeake Bay Retriever twice per year. However, the more the better, and monthly weigh-ins, especially during the first year, are essential to monitoring the holistic health of your Chessie puppy.
Regular weigh-ins also enable you to spot any health conditions early, before they become more serious.
To measure you can simply use a bathroom scale. First, ensure that the scale reads zero, then step on it and record your weight.
Secondly, gently pick up your dog, step on the scale, and record the total weight. Finally, subtract your weight from the total weight of you holding the dog, and this is your Chessies weight.
Chesapeake Bay Retriever Genetics And Common Health Problems
The three most common health conditions associated with Chesapeake Bay Retrievers are allowed below.
- Hip dysplasia – this refers to when a dog’s hip joint is misaligned with the socket which causes the joints to scrape against each other. The symptom is typically inflammation and irritation, with your Chessie in pain while walking or transferring weight to the hind legs.
- Bloat – this is when the stomach is overfilled with air and blood cannot properly flow throughout the body. Sometimes this can cause a medical emergency so if you notice retching, salivation or anxiousness, call the vet for an immediate check-up.
- Hypothyroidism – this is caused when the thyroid gland underproduces. The thyroid is essential to regulate metabolism so when it is underperforming, you will notice a change in appetite, loss of hair and lethargy.
Hopefully, this article has given you all the essential information you need to know about the Chesapeake Bay Retriever growth chart.
The growth chart is a simple, easy-to-use tool to ensure your Chessie is on track to be a healthy weight in adulthood.
While some of the growth is pre-determined by genetics, factors in an owner’s control such as nutrition and exercise, are crucial to supporting healthy growth for your Chessie.
Regular growth monitoring is encouraged and be proactive in visiting the vet if you have any health concerns.