Based on the importance of early-life events in breast cancer risk, we have investigated the effects of high-fat diets on maturation, mammary gland development, and its susceptibility to transformation. Female Sprague-Dawley rats were fed a lowfat (LF), high corn oil (HCO), or high extra-virgin olive oil (HOO) diet from weaning and gavaged with 7,12-dimethylbenz[a]anthracene. Body weight and mass increased in the HCO group compared to the LF group. The vaginal opening was advanced in both high-fat groups, especially in the HCO group. This HCO group also had increased body weight around puberty, more corpora lutea at post-puberty, and tended to have higher kisspeptin levels in the hypothalamus. Both high-fat diets induced subtle modifications in the morphology of the mammary gland, with no changes on β-casein or hormone receptors expression in the gland. The HCO diet had a clearly stimulating effect of carcinogenesis, inducing the earliest appearance of tumors and the highest tumor incidence and yield, whereas the HOO diet seemed to have a weak enhancing effect, increasing tumor yield. Our data suggest a strong influence of the HCO diet in sexual maturation and mammary cancer risk, while rats fed the HOO diet were more similar to the controls. Copyright © 2011, Taylor & Francis Group, LLC.