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Disclaimer: This post is for informational purposes only. Please consult with your vet to determine what is safe and best for your dog.
Do you know the new puppy essentials before bringing home a new dog?
I got my first dog in 2014, and bringing her home was one of the best decisions I’ve every made! I was set on adopting, so after falling in love with her on PetFinder, my husband and I drove seven hours to bring her home. All of the waiting and excitement of a new puppy distracted me from being fully prepared.
After getting back home with our new furbaby, we had to go to Walmart in the middle of the night because all we had were food and toys. We did not think about other essentials such as puppy pads and a crate. Plus, it is unbelievably hard to leave a new puppy after just getting home with her! You will likely want to be right by her side. Anyway, I have listed items below to help you prepare your pre-puppy shopping list.
New Puppy Essentials List:
Food & Food Related Essentials:
- Puppy Dry Dog Food: Do your research and find a healthy dog food from a brand you trust. Make sure you buy the puppy formula because the kibble will be smaller and easier for your dog to eat. Plus, dogs need different nutrients at different stages of life. After researching and comparing all options, I decided on Blue Buffalo Puppy Dog Food for my dogs.
- Wet Dog Food: In case your dog takes a while to adjust, having a more enticing food option can be a lifesaver. A new environment may make your dog nervous to eat at first. Or, your dog may not like the dog food you pick out. You can even get wet dog food that goes with your dry dog food to make the dry food seem more exciting. Blue Buffalo has matching wet food to go with their dry dog food line.
- Treats: This is a tricky one because so many treats are not puppy friendly. Be careful when selecting treats and be sure to read the information on the package to verify the treat is puppy safe. If you are nervous about buying treats, you can keep sweet potatoes around as a treat. Just bake or microwave the sweet potato then add a couple of spoonfuls to their dry food once the potato is cool enough to eat.
- Food & Water Bowl: Make sure you have a bowl for food and water. I recommend a stainless steel water bowl because they are more sanitary and are so easy to clean.
Safety New Puppy Essentials:
- Harness or Collar: I tried using a collar for my dog at first, but hated it since my dog pulled so much during our walks. I was so afraid she would get choked trying to pull on the leash. Switching to a harness made worlds of difference. I use the Gooby Soft Harness and it has been wonderful!
- ID Tag: Have an ID tag made if possible so you can immediately put it on your dog’s collar or harness. This is just a great precautionary step to take in case your dog ever gets loose.
- Leash: I used to think a leash was a leash and any old leash would be just fine. I was very wrong! I recommend getting a non-retractable and a retractable leash. A dog trainer told me to use a non-retractable leash if leash-walking is a challenge. Your preference may vary depending on your dog’s size and activity level, but having both is the best bet. My favorite retractable leash is the Flexi Retractable Dog Leash. The handle is so compact and much easier to hold.
- Crate: If you haven’t thought of a plan for your dog for when you leave the house, you should take time to do this before even bringing your puppy home. So many new dog owners do not realize that dogs can get terrible separation anxiety and can chew or destruct things in the house. To prevent this, make a plan for your dog to have a safe space to stay when you have to leave her. Crate training is just one option. You can get crates in big box stores, pet stores or Amazon. Make sure to get the appropriate size and crate train to get your dog adjusted.
- Dog Brush: You will especially want this if you are bringing home a long-haired puppy. Long hair gets tangled so easily. Even if your dog has short hair, regular brushing prevents shedding. You may want to go ahead and invest in a Furminator if your dog has long hair – they are well worth the investment.
- Dog Shampoo: You may be surprised how soon you need dog shampoo. Bathing my new puppy was one of the first things I did for two reasons: 1.) To get her used to having baths 2.) To remove weird smells from where I adopted her from. I use Dr. Bronner’s Pure-Castile Liquid Soap in Lavender since it is natural and safe for pets. It lasts forever because you dilute it with water. Just add a few drops to the bath or apply directly to your pup. This is really helpful for itchy skin too if your dog has allergies.
- Puppy Pee Pads: Puppy Pee Pads are great until you figure out a potty training plan. Sometimes having a pee pad near the door will help with potty training too. As you can see from the picture above, I had to get comfy near the pee pads for a long time in hopes that my pup would eventually go so I could reward her. She thought it was nap time!
- Flea & Tick Prevention: If your pup is 8 weeks or older, she is probably old enough for flea and tick prevention. Check with your vet to make sure this is safe for your dog. If your dog will be going outside a lot, flea prevention is especially important. Summer is the worst time of year for fleas, too.
- Benadryl: You may want to keep Benadryl in your First Aid Kit in case of allergy emergencies. This can be a lifesaver if you are in an unexpected situation. Just be sure and consult with your vet first.
Game Changing New Puppy Supplies:
- Kong: Avoid chewing behavior with these lifesaving toys! Kongs are great for preventing separation anxiety too. You can stuff the sturdy chew toy with a treat like peanut butter or cheese, then freeze it to make it last even longer.
- UV Flashlight: Your new pup will likely have accidents while you are not looking. This little UV Blacklight Flashlight was a lifesaver for finding hidden stains and you can finally stop wondering where the terrible smells are coming from!
- Carpet cleaner: Accidents are bound to happen, even if you bring home a potty-trained dog. Just be prepared for them as best as possible. Nature’s Miracle is seriously amazing for pet related stains, especially urine!