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A new furry friend can be a bundle of joy, but a canine companion comes with the responsibility of guardianship. Be certain that you or the recipient is ready for such a commitment.
Before you bring home your puppy have these supplies on hand:
Consider how you will be bringing your puppy home. A portable soft crate/carrier will keep it safe and secure.
A crate replicates a den to a dog, it is an invaluable tool when housebreaking a puppy. It also provides your young dog with a sense of security when you are busy or away. However, introduce a crate gradually at first, making it a positive experience, you could even feed your pup in there for a few days. Please remember to never leave a puppy in a crate longer than 4-5 hours.
Bedding should be thick enough for comfort and sized appropriately for the breed. Put something in there with your scent on it, i.e. an old jumper, towel or a blanket. Be aware that some puppies that are left unattended for too long may chew their bedding.
Baby gates serve as a great training tool to block off “restricted” areas of the house and help to teach your puppy what areas are off limits. For example - set up a ‘restricted’ area i.e. in the laundry for your puppy to have room to roam and play. By using baby gates, the door can be left open and your pup can still hear you. Remember until your puppy grows you might need to put mesh on them to stop small puppies walking through them. Put the crate in there, toileting pads, cover area with newspaper also in the beginning, plenty of appropriate chew toys, water and food.
Dog appropriate ‘safe’ toys, like the puppy-sized KONG products or Bark Busters GameChanger® are a smart choice. Never use old clothing or shoes as a toy; a puppy cannot differentiate between your old and newly bought items. Stick with size-appropriate toys for your breed.
Two dog bowls - one for water and one for quality food. Consult your veterinarian for food recommendations.
A well-fitted collar and lead are a must for training and safety during outdoor excursions. Avoid chain leads, a soft cotton lead is a better alternative.
A WaggTagg™ allows your puppy to find their way home should they roam. You may also want to microchip your puppy at your next vet visit.
Brushes and a good quality lanolin dog shampoo will eventually be needed for every breed. An odour and stain eliminator is a cleaner you will want on hand for those inevitable toileting accidents.
A veterinarian should be researched and chosen beforehand. Introduce your new puppy early to the vet and learn what vaccinations he will need.
In addition to the essential supplies mentioned above, ensure your house and yard is safe for the exuberance of a new puppy.
Remove potential hazards - that is anything that would make an enticing chew toy.
Inside - power cords, potted house plants, shoes and clothing and anything “bite-size” that could be ingested by a curious puppy.
Outside - remove small rocks, sticks, gardening tools and equipment. Also, be mindful of toxic household and garage items, such as garden fertilisers, sprays, chemicals, detergents and tobacco products.
Move anything cherished , dangerous or breakable to higher ground. Like a young toddler, puppies will be inquisitive and get into everything and anything available and will chew valuable items if you leave your puppy unattended.
Get on your hands and knees – at the puppy’s view – to look for potential problems. If you think an item could be a hazard, remove it.
Now that you have all the initial necessities and prepared your home, you are ready to welcome your new family addition.