Preparing to bring home your new puppy is both exciting and a little bit overwhelming. Maybe you are a first-time dog owner or haven’t gone through the puppy process in a while. Either way, there are important preparation steps and supplies that be easily overlooked with all the excitement.
Keeping a new puppy essentials list will go a long way in helping you cover all your bases. From veterinarian checks, puppy food, to training treats, we’ve got you covered. Here are all the supplies you will want to add to your new puppy shopping list.
New Puppy Essentials List
This new puppy checklist mostly includes shopping items that should be taken care of before bringing your puppy home. Examples of these items are puppy food, treats for training, and a dog crate.
Some items will require you to have your puppy in hand to take care of. Veterinarian visits for microchipping, health assessments and vaccinations fall in this category.
Basic Puppy Supplies
Getting two dog beds will give your dog their own special places to lounge. This is especially important for households that do not permit animals on their furniture. Placing your puppy’s bed in specific places will influence their behavior in significant ways.
One dog bed should go inside their crate, where they sleep at night. The other dog bed should be placed in a common area where your family hangs so. This will allow the dog to feel like part of the pack without needing to climb into your couch.
Dogs love to be comfortable too! Make your puppy’s crate as welcoming as possible by including soft blankets. When your puppy is happy in their crate, they will be less likely to cry at night.
As an added touch, sleep with your puppy’s blanket before placing it in their crate. Your personal scent will linger on the blanket, giving your puppy extra comfort and security.
Crating your dog while they are young will prove to be a very positive experience for both you and your puppy. This is provided that you introduce the crate to your puppy the right way.
For your puppy to create positive associations with their crate, never leave your puppy in their crate for extended periods of time. It is equally important to never use their crate as a punishment for bad behavior.
Place your puppy in their crate while you are away or during bedtime. Since your puppy is young, they will not be able to hold their bladder for as long as an adult dog. This is especially true for smaller breeds.
During their puppy stage, you will need to wake up early after a few hours of sleep to take them outside to use the bathroom. To keep them from using their crate as a bathroom, make sure the crate is large enough for them to only sleep and not walk around in.
Once it has been a few hours, your puppy should be ready to use the bathroom. Immediately take them outside to the potty area and allow them to do their thing. Each and every time they go potty where they are meant to, give them lots of praise and treats.
Once you’ve got your crating routine down, you will have a much easier time raising your puppy. There will be no whining, no accidents, and you will slowly gain more sleep each night as they become older.
Remember, do not leave your puppy in their crate for more than three or four hours. They simply cannot control their bladders for that long. This will change as they get closer to a year old, so hang in there!
Dog collars and harnesses will allow you to take your puppy out on a leash. Purchasing an adjustable collar will give you some extra time before you need to get another one. Depending on your puppy’s breed you may have to invest in more or fewer collars.
As far as fit goes, you should be able to comfortably fit your fingers in between your puppy’s collar and their neck. Also, be sure that your puppy cannot slip their head out of its collar as it may give you an unwanted surprise while you’re out and about.
ID tags are an absolute must for your puppy in case they get lost. Be sure to at minimum include your dog’s name and your phone number on the ID tag. Adding your dog’s name will give the finder an easier time getting your dog to listen.
If there is enough space, include your home address so that the good Samaritan can return your dog. You want to make the process as easy as possible for them. Some people who don’t own pets won’t think to have their microchip checked, so IDs are necessary.
Dog leashes are a basic dog supply that you should be able to hold onto for a while unless you have a very large breed. Be sure to get a durable leash so that your dog won’t get loose on walks.
Car Seat Cover
Keeping your car seats clean should be a breeze if you have a seat cover. Since your pooch will need to place their paws on your car seats, it is certain they will become filthy fast if not protected.
Dog Seat Belt
Dogs need the same protections that humans do when traveling in a car. A flimsy harness that you typically find at pet stores or on Amazon isn’t enough to save your pet’s life in a car accident. Make sure your dog’s seat belt harness is crash-tested. Zelda’s favorite seatbelt harness that she personally uses is the Sleepy Pod car harness.
While your dog is still a puppy, it’s important to carry them around either in your arms or a dog carrier. This is to prevent them from catching diseases such as Parvo before they are fully protected from their vaccinations.
Carrying your puppy (or adult dog) is much easier with a backpack since your back is much stronger than your arms.
Biodegradable poop bags are a great way to keep your backyard free of mess. Remember to bring these bags with you on your daily walks around the neighborhood. It is proper dog walking etiquette to pick up your dog’s number two as soon as possible.
If you have a grassy backyard, a poop scoop will speed up the cleaning process. You can line your poop scooper bin with a poop bag to reduce the number of routine cleanings.
Feeding Your Puppy
Dog Food Storage Containers
Whether you are feeding your dog kibble, raw, or wet food will impact the type of food storage you need. Properly storing your dog’s food will keep it clean, help it last longer, and prevent family members from getting sick if you are feeding raw.
Purchasing age-appropriate food is vital to your puppy’s overall development. Be sure to do as much research as you can to ensure your puppy’s food is the highest quality you can afford.
Puppy Training Treats
Small training treats are the perfect way to incentivize your puppy. Puppies given positive training will respond quicker and retain the information longer. It is important to never use hit or frighten your dog when training as this can cause aggression.
Two dog bowls will be needed; one dog bowl will be used for water and one dog bowl will be for food. Get stainless steel dog bowls for easy cleaning.
Puppies can be a bit messy at times. Save yourself some cleaning effort by placing a bowl mat under their food and water bowl. This will also help protect your flooring from spills.
Puppy Proofing Your Home
Baby Gates/Dog Gates
Blocking off hazardous areas of your home will aid your puppy raising experience. In addition to keeping your puppy safe, you also keep your carpeted areas safe.
Place dog gates are key entryways and hallways to prevent your puppy from getting anywhere they shouldn’t be. It is best to set up your gates so that you can keep your eye on your puppy at all times without effort.
Training your puppy to use puppy pads as their emergency bathroom will help with positive training. Place puppy pads near your backdoor and in the grass area of your backyard.
As your puppy becomes older and more capable of holding its bladder, begin taking away the indoor puppy pads. Give your puppy plenty of praise when using the grass outside as a potty.
Bitter Apple Spray
Puppies love to chew and furniture can be a huge relief for their growing teeth. Spray bitter apple on furniture pieces to deter your puppy from chomping down.
Do not spray bitter apple in your puppy’s mouth as a punishment. This will cause your puppy to fear you as well as the punishment.
Look for a carpet cleaner that advertises enzymes in addition to stain removal. Enzymes help break down the dog’s urine to give your carpet a better clean. If you are concerned about pet odor, this item is essential.
If you have the budget for it, a professional trainer will accelerate your puppy’s learning by teaching you important dog training skills. If purchasing dog training isn’t an option, take a look at some YouTube dog training channels.
There are plenty of free or budget-friendly dog training courses online that will get you started on the right foot. The best part is, you don’t even have to leave the house.
Regardless of whether you get professional dog training or take a do-it-yourself approach from home, you will need to continue the training at all times. This means getting the whole family involved.
If one or two members of your family decide to not cooperate with the training, it can significantly slow down the process. Be sure to get everyone up to speed on positive dog training to reinforce your puppy’s new habits.
Exercise Supplies for Puppies
Providing your dog with the right dog toys will help with physical stimulation, mental stimulation, and their bond to you. As an added bonus, when used as a training aid, your puppy can have fun while learning new tricks.
A durable chew toy will help alleviate your puppy’s discomfort while their teeth are growing. It will also keep their teeth off your hands, feet, and shoes.
We recommend the KONG Puppy Toy With Soft Teething Rubber since it is soft enough for your pup’s teeth but also tough enough to withstand long chewing sessions.
Interactive Dog Toys
Mental stimulation is one of the most overlooked areas when it comes to puppy care. Taking your puppy for walks might be enough for a few breeds, but most will need something more.
Interactive dog toys work for very intelligent dog breeds like Border Collies, German Shepherds, and Labrador Retrievers. This type of toy allows your dog to use their problem-solving skills to figure out puzzles.
The Outward Hound Nina Ottosson Interactive Puzzle Game is a dog owner’s favorite. It comes in different difficulty levels so that you can adjust to your dog’s level. Dogs experiencing anxiety will love these focus-based toys.
Just like the blanket, comfort toys work by helping your puppy feel secure in their crate. Take your new comfort toy and place it in a pile of your dirty laundry. Your scent will help your puppy feel secure when confined to their crate.
Dog Toy Storage
You should have at least three types of toys for your puppy, but chances are you will have several of each type. To avoid making a mess of your home, put toys that aren’t being used in toy storage.
Puppy Grooming Supplies
Depending on your type of puppy, you may need more than one type of dog brush. For most puppies, a double-sided brush will do the trick. For more information on dog brushes, check out our favorite dog brushes for German Shepherd and other double-coated breeds.
Many dogs won’t need their nails trimmed often if you are giving them plenty of exercise. Their nails will naturally file down.
However, if your dog has fast-growing nails, be sure to get a nail clipper. It will prevent nail-related injuries.
Gentle shampoos will make bath time a more positive experience for your dog. It will keep their skin and coats healthy while avoiding teary eyes. Depending on the type of fur your dog has, you may have to bathe them more or less frequently.
Puppy Toothbrush and Dog Toothpaste
Maintaining oral health will extend the life of your new puppy. Poor oral hygiene and bacteria buildup adversely affects your dog’s body.
Veterinarian costs for accidents can be very, very expensive. The rules for animal healthcare are much different than for humans and you will be expected to have payment ready.
Pet insurance gives you the ease of mind knowing that your dog will receive healthcare in case of an accident. You can also get pet insurance that protects against cancer and other hereditary diseases.
Get your puppy microchipped so that it can easily be retrieved if lost.
Heartworm, Tick and Flea Prevention
Preventative heartworm measures should be taken on a monthly basis since heartworms can become immune to treatment if allowed to develop. Be sure to read through this PetMD guide for more information.
Tick and flea prevention will depend on the area you live in. Ask your veterinarian for advice on this.
Parasites can wreak havoc on your puppy’s body. Your veterinarian will guide you on the best routine testing schedule.
Vaccinating your puppy will prevent you from paying for costly treatments if they were to become sick. Many areas require you to vaccinate your pet so be sure to look into this.
Parvo is a highly contagious virus of which there is no cure. Since this virus can be lethal to your puppy, you will want to learn as much as you can. Puppies that are most at risk of getting parvo are six weeks to six months of age.
See this AKC Parvo Guide for more information.
Taking your dog to a doggie daycare center can be a great way to provide regular socialization. However, you should only introduce your puppy to large groups of dogs once they are trained and past the danger zone for Parvo.
Allowing your dog to be around many other animals too soon can negatively impact their training. Bad habits from other dogs can be picked up and difficult to reverse.
Taking your dog to the park is a wonderful experience. Finding playmates is great for teaching your dog social behaviors that they will maintain throughout their lives.
As far as dog parks go, you should be careful about which ones you bring your pooch to if you bring them at all. While your dog may be well-trained, other pet owners sometimes use dog parks to socialize anxious dogs.
This approach only makes their dog’s anxiety worse and sometimes leads to aggression. For this reason, avoiding dog parks might be your best bet. If you decide to bring your dog to a dog park, be sure to keep a very watchful eye on them.
Clear Your Schedule for Your New Puppy
Dog ownership is such a rewarding experience, but also a demanding one. Before taking the leap, make sure you are able to afford the necessities of owning a dog. Being mentally prepared for a ton of responsibility is also a must.
Don’t be discouraged if your puppy doesn’t take to you at first. After all, they’re a baby. Their affection for you will grow exponentially over time and your pup will transform into your perfect companion.
Helpful Tips for Puppy Proofing Your Home
Puppies have a ton of curiosity and energy that can sometimes lead to avoidable accidents. Properly puppy-proofing your home will ensure the safety of your new puppy and give you some peace of mind. Consider these preventative measures prior to bringing your new furbaby home.
- Dog fences should be used to keep your puppy out of dangerous areas of your home. Fencing off areas is also useful for keeping your puppy off your carpet during potty training.
- Covering your pool will ensure the safety of your puppy. While many dogs are strong swimmers, all it takes is an unsupervised dog to slip and fall into the pool unconscious. Drowning is the second leading cause of unintentional injury-related deaths for children under 14. It is likely that the death count of dogs is much higher since people typically don’t report dog deaths nearly as much.
- All visible wires in areas your puppy has access to should be secured and out of sight. It is tempting for puppies to tug on these wires, which puts them at risk of getting electrocuted.
- Hanging fabrics should be put away to keep your puppy from pulling on them. Examples include curtains, dish towels, bathing towels, blankets, and tablecloths.
- Double-check that your houseplants are non-toxic to dogs. Many attractive houseplants can poison your dog if ingested. Take a look at the ASPCA’s website for information on safe and dangerous plants.
New Puppy Shopping List for Amazon
Keeping a checklist of all the to-do items for your new puppy can make life a lot easier. Here is a new puppy checklist for supplies you can get from Amazon.
- Dog Bed
- Dog Blankets
- Dog Crate
- Adjustable Dog Collar
- ID Tags
- Dog Leash
- Car Seat Cover
- Poop Bags
- Poop Scoop
- Dog Food Storage Containers
- Puppy Food
- Training Treats
- Dog Bowls (2)
- Bowl Mat
- Baby/Dog Gates
- Puppy Pads
- Bitter Apple Spray
- Carpet Cleaner With Enzymes
- Chew Toys
- Interactive Toys
- Comfort Toys
- Dog Toy Storage
- Dog Brush
- Nail Clippers
- Puppy Shampoo
- Puppy Toothbrush
- Puppy Toothpaste
- Car Dog Harness/Seatbelt
- Dog Backpack/Carrier
Did you enjoy this new puppy checklist? Be sure to share it with your friends and family. Until next time!