The Puppy Starter Checklist

Just like when you bring home a baby, there are a few things you need to keep handy before your pooch arrives home.

Puppy Crate, Dog Beds & Dog Kennels

  1. Choose a quiet area of the house or outside your house if you are considering a kennel. Select a space where your puppy can sleep without being disturbed whenever he’s tired. Let him get comfortable with this space.
  2. Line his bed with something soft and warm (and something to snuggle with). You could choose an old blanket, as he’s likely to chew.

Food & Water Bowls

  1. Try the “non-tip” variety of bowl, or put a plastic, non-slip mat underneath his bowl.
  2. Stainless steel bowls are also recommended, as they’re easier to clean and keep your puppy’s feeding area hygienic.
  3. Clean both his food and water bowls every day.
  4. Regularly fill your puppy’s bowl with fresh water.
  5. If you’re serving wet puppy food, ensure that it’s kept refrigerated and your puppy eats it within 15–20 minutes; if he doesn’t finish all of his food, discard it. 

Toys and Chews

  1. Choose toys and chews that are the right size, shape and texture for their growing teeth, mouth and jaws. Ask your vet for suggestions. 

Stain Removers and Deodorizers

  1. Because your puppy can (and will) have accidents as he becomes house-trained, it’s a good idea to pick up some stain removers and enzymatic deodorisers.
  2. If the area isn’t completely cleaned, your dog will continue to smell his personal scent, and keep returning to the area to do it again. 
  3. If a ‘wet’ accident has just happened, clean effectively and remove the odour by applying a deodoriser.

Shampoo, Brush and Comb, and Toothbrush/Paste.

  1. Talk to your vet about a dog shampoo that’s pH balanced and suitable.
  2. Select the brushes and combs to ensure his or her coat stays healthy and tangle-free. Do expore options best suited to your dog’s breed.
  3. Brushing teeth can be a challenge at first, but if you introduce it while he’s young, he will adjust to the process.

ID Tags and Dog Collars.

  1. Choose a nylon or soft leather collar; or a dog collar that expands as he grows.
  2. Your puppy’s identification tags should be firmly attached to his collar. Include his name, your current address and phone number. It’s also a good idea to include a separate tag with your vet’s name and phone number.

Dog Chain or Leash

  1. According to your preference, you may keep a long or a short leash, or both. Use the short one for walks, or park trips. A long leash cuts him some slack to stretch his legs.
  2. Remember to limit the exposure of your puppy to other puppies and dog parks until he’s received his vaccinations.

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