15 Things Every New Puppy Parent Must Have

Raising a puppy can be a very exciting experience but also time consuming and stressful. Sometimes new puppy parents find themselves unprepared for the flood of responsibilities and needs that come with adopting a young dog.

1. Crate

The crate is used to help potty train your puppy, and with some training, it can become a personal space for your dog to feel comfortable and relax. It's also a great place to put your dog when you can't watch them to keep them out of harm's way.

2. Bed

During the house training process, you'll want to purchase a dog bed that will fit into your puppy's crate. The puppy can lay on the bed while in the crate for naps and when sleeping during the night. The bed will make the crate a cosier place to help your dog feel more secure.

3. Food Bowl

Your puppy will have a hungry appetite while they're growing, so it's important your dog has a familiar food bowl used every day for their meals. Some plastic bowls are easily mistaken as toys, and puppies are prone to playfully knock them over or chew on them. I suggest purchasing a dishwasher-safe ceramic bowl for your dog.

4. High Quality Puppy Food

It's important to feed your puppy food labelled specifically for a puppy because it's designed with the nutritional needs for a growing dog. Typically your puppy should be fed puppy food until they are six months to a year old. It's important to find a puppy food with the proper blend of proteins, vitamins, and minerals to support a healthy growing dog.

5. Water Bowl

I suggest purchasing a dish-washer safe ceramic bowl for your dog to drink water from. Just like with the food dish, you don't want puppy to confuse meal times with play times. Plastic bowls may seem like toys. You should always make fresh water available for your dog and wash the water bowl frequently.

6. Leash

The dog leash, or sometimes called a lead, connects you to your dog. It's your dog's safety line back to you that keeps them out of harm's way. Your dog will need to be leash trained when they need to be taken to see a vet. It's also important to have a leash for walks around the neighbourhood.

7. Identification Tags

A personalized pet ID tag is a must-have item because, if your dog were to ever go missing, anyone who finds them could bring your dog back home thanks to the information engraved on the tag. Include your dog's name and your phone number on the tag so someone who finds your dog knows how to contact you.

8. Collar

I recommend a leather dog collar with buckle for your dog to keep their identification tags on them at all times. This goes with the ID tags above, so if your dog were to ever go missing, they'd have a way back home thanks to the information engraved on the tags. The collar must be sturdy, and a metal buckle is hard to break. Too many dogs have been lost or injured with those nylon collars and plastic buckle clips. They just aren't as reliable.

9. Harness

During walks on a leash, it's important to use a harness instead of a neck collar for most dogs. Neck collars can put a lot of painful strain on the neck's muscles and trachea. There are many different options for harnesses, such as a body harness, chest harness, or face harness. These different harness types are available in all dog sizes. A harness helps give an even amount of pressure along the device, and some harnesses can help with pulling issues.

10. Poop Bags

During walks with your dog, it's important that you pick up all faeces with dog poop bags so that you can keep the environment clean. Puppy and adult dog stool can sometimes carry intestinal parasites or disease, so it's important to clean up the poop so that another person's dog doesn't get infected.

11. Chews

Dogs have natural urges to chew throughout their entire lives. Chewing gives your dog a job to do, and it keeps him busy. There are many different types of chews you can buy for your dog. Some people mistake toys as being chews, but they are two different items. Real chews include bones, bully sticks, and hooves.

12. Toys

Dogs need activities to keep them entertained and their minds stimulated. There are many different types of dog toys you can purchase for your puppy. Balls to play fetch, tug-of-war toys, plush toys with squeakers, and puzzle toys are all great items to keep your pup active.

13. Training Clicker

Clicker training is a method of dog training that uses a click noise to tell your dog that they're doing what you want them to do at the exact moment you make the noise. You can associate a reward with the click noise your dog training clicker makes so your puppy starts to understand that the click is a good thing. Clicker training is a form of positive reinforcement and can be used to teach your dog all types of commands.

14. Treats

Treats are very important to have with your new dog to use in positive reinforcement dog training. I recommend purchasing a small soft chew dog training treats. Always use small pieces of a treat in training so you don't overfeed your puppy. Your dog will have specific flavours they enjoy more, and preference will vary depending on your puppy's unique personality.

15. Car Safety Harness

Last but not least, purchase a safety harness or car restraint for your dog while in the car. Car safety is very important for your canine companion in case you get into a car accident. Having a car safety harness will ensure that your dog is secure and in one place. There are booster seats available for smaller dogs and safety harnesses available for larger dog breeds.

These are the must-have items every dog owner should get when adopting a new puppy. Purchase these products before you bring your pup home so you're prepared in advance. Having them will help keep your puppy happy and safe throughout their life.