There’s nothing more exciting than getting a new puppy! You’re about to enter a world of cuddles, kisses, and undying love!
But adding a new member to your family is always a big event. Sometimes it can leave you feeling a little unprepared.
We put together an essential list of must-haves to help you welcome your new pup with the perfect setup!
Collar, Leash, and ID Tag
You definitely need a collar and ID tag in case your pet gets out. This is one of those things that is easy to put off until it’s too late, so do yourself a favor and get ahead of the game!
Make sure your ID tag has your puppy’s name, your name, and phone number. It’s also helpful to have a backup phone number and your address. You want to make sure that you can be reached if someone finds your pup wandering!
You’ll also need a quality leash. If your dog gets plenty of backyard time and you don’t go for long walks, a standard leash works well. But we recommend a retractable leash if you’re walking through the neighborhood regularly!
Your pup will probably need their own dog bowl, even if you have other pets at home. (This helps make sure everyone gets enough food and water and avoids territorial disputes!)
There are plenty of options to suit your tastes, your pet’s tastes, and your home. Stainless steel sets on stands are a great option—they’re durable, easy to clean, and the stand holds them in place so your pet is less likely to knock them over. (Which is especially helpful if you have an eager but clumsy puppy!)
If you need something more unique, you’re in luck! There are endless options—including self-feeding bowls to spread out smaller meals throughout the day even if you’re at work, and even maze bowls designed for dogs who eat too fast and make themselves sick!
Collapsible bowls are always a great option for hiking and traveling! We prefer the food-grade silicone varieties that stay clean and sanitary.
A Good Dog Bed
This one isn’t a must-have for every dog—some dogs love their dog beds, while others ignore them completely. But it’s always a nice option to have for a new pup!
Make sure you get a bed that’s big enough for your dog—even small dogs like to have extra space to burrow in!
A good way to get your dog to use their bed is to make it an inviting place to be. Keep their toys nearby, or offer them a special toy that they only get in their bed! Taking an old blanket or towel and rubbing your scent on it helps comfort and attract your puppy as well.
Toys and Treats
All puppies need plenty of toys and treats! There are countless great options for toys for your new puppy. Squeaky toys and stuffed toys are great options that many dogs love. You’ll probably have to experiment with different options and see what your dog loves the best!
Offering healthy treats for your puppy is a great way to form bonds and help train them. There are plenty of nutritious options that will have your dog literally eating out of the palm of your hand!
Dog Shampoo And a Good Flea Treatment
Try as we might to keep them clean, puppies get messy! They have a tendency to get into anything and everything. Having a good dog shampoo on hand can be a life-saver! Depending on your pup’s breed or fur length, you may need speciality shampoos and conditioners.
As the weather gets warmer, it’s also very important to make sure your dog has a good flea and tick treatment. Some climates are more likely to get these pests than others, but it’s better to be safe than sorry! Ticks and fleas are painful for your pet and they can be very hard to get rid of. Prevention is the best way to go!
A Good Quality Dog Food
Finding the right dog food for your pet takes some trial and error. Some dogs will eat anything and others have a more sensitive stomach. Some dogs like wet food and some can only eat dry.
When buying dog food for your new puppy try buying a couple smaller bags before committing to a bigger one. Always check the ingredients and look for foods with less fillers and more wholesome protein options.
Another added perk of better quality dog food is your puppy is less likely to have as many accidents. Good food with less fillers often digest a little quicker, which makes taking your puppy outside a little bit more predictable. That’s an added perk for you as well as them!
You can always check with your vet to get their recommendation on foods! They’re likely to be in the know on recalls or issues with certain brands.
The Best Thing You Can Give Your Pup is Love
We love to spoil our pets (after all, they give you undying love and affection, and they deserve the best!)
But regardless of what gifts you shower your dog with, the most important gift to them is your love. That’s more valuable than every toy in the pet store—the only thing a puppy really wants is your time and affection.
If you’re an outdoor enthusiast, be sure to check out our e-book on Essential Gear for Hiking with Your Dog for more tips on what to buy!