Pre-puppy preparation can be fun, but it also involves a lot of planning. Our quick guide to the puppy supplies and equipment you’ll need will help you along the way.
You don’t need to go over the top, but there are a few essentials you’ll need to prepare for the new arrival:
Puppy crate: if you’re going to crate-train your puppy this should be the first thing you buy. It helps with house training, keeps the puppy safe, and just as importantly keeps your house safe from the puppy! (We’ll take a closer look at crate training in our next blog so stay tuned).
Puppy Collar, ID Tag, Leash: Even if the puppy isn’t fully-immunised and therefore not ready to go outside, it’s a good idea to introduce him to the feel of the collar, and there’s no harm in practising with a leash. Don’t go for expensive types, unless they’re adjustable, and can grow with the puppy. Order an ID tag as soon as you know the pup’s name.
Puppy Bed: All pups need a soft, snuggly bed to sleep in. You don’t need to go out and buy one. It can be as simple as a box with a towel or blanket in it. If the puppy already has a crate you can just put some bedding inside it. Everything should be easily washable, for the inevitable accidents.
Food and water bowls: These should be sturdy and easy to clean. Stainless steel, with a non-slip base are probably the best material to go for.
Puppy Food: Use puppy food that’s age and size appropriate. It’s best to start with the food that the puppy has been weaned onto before you got her, and then modify as advised by your vet.
Puppy Toys: A variety of safe toys to chew is a good idea – the more they chew toys the less they chew furniture! You can’t go past the kong as a tried and tested chew toy. Balls, interactive toys and fetch toys are all worth exploring as well. See our blog on toys here for more ideas.
Puppy Treats: When you start puppy training you’ll need treats as a reward. Nearly all dogs are motivated by food.
Grooming tools: Ask a groomer or vet for advice on the best type of comb or brush to use on your puppy’s type of coat. Get an appropriate shampoo as well, and toothpaste and toothbrush – start as you mean to go on with the grooming and tooth brushing. Reward them after brushing both coat and teeth so they see it as a positive experience.
House-cleaning tools: Mostly you can puppy-proof your home by moving things out of reach or putting a baby gate up for no-go zones, but there’s some places you can’t keep safe, like the corners of the couch, for example. For this type of thing you can use something like bitter apple spray – it’s scentless to us but smells really nasty to dogs, so they keep away. And when it comes to wiping up after a puppy pee accident you should use an enzyme cleaner (there are plenty of these on the market to choose from) instead of a regular household spray, because the enzymes can eliminate odours that only your dog can smell, so reducing the impact of his calling card and the urge to go in the same spot again. Also, avoid any cleaning agent containing ammonia – it smells just like pee to your puppy, and so is like honey to a bee for a repeat offence!