Are you excited to be the parent of a new puppy? Now you have a little bundle of fluff to accompany you at home! Expect your day to be a little brighter, night a little warmer, and life a whole lot happier. Puppies are cute and they bring happiness wherever they go.
However, every good side has bad side as well. You can expect happiness, but also be prepared for the consequences. Puppy needs your care, so you’ll need to make time for them. They’ll need you to take care of them as well as play with them. Puppies need space as well. Be prepared to have your house invaded with their little ‘gift’ for you. Chewed on shoes, knocked over vases, also, if your puppy is not yet toilet-trained – dog poop and urine on the floor.
Also expect the energy! Good God, what an energetic balls puppies are! They run from one end of the house to the other in bullet speed, sniff and explore every nook and cranny, and often end up on unique location where they need help to get extracted from.
However, those are small price to pay for companion that last for a lifetime! Don’t let them dampen your excitement for new puppies. As long as you have the necessary equipment, you’ll find taking care of puppies easier than you think it’d be! Below is the list of essentials for puppy every new puppy parent should have in five categories.
Rest and Comfort
Dog bed: Your puppy needs place to sleep. The most important thing for bed is the comfort it offers for the dog, so pick a well-padded bed. The next most important thing how easy it is to clean. Choose the one with removable cushion and machine-washable one if possible. After that, you can consider the design so it matches with your room decoration.
Crate: Imagine crate as a room for your dog. This is a space of his own when he needs to get away from you (or your active toddler, for example). Crate is also practical when you need to do something that can be dangerous – like cleaning the bathroom or cooking – and has no one else to supervise him. Put his bed and toys inside and everybody will be a great deal safer.
Furniture cover: To protect your furniture surface, especially those with soft surface like couch or bed from puppy mess, you’ll want furniture cover. Invest in several pieces of quality that are not likely to tear from puppy teeth. Furniture cover now comes in various models and colors, so don’t worry about them looking horrible on your items.
Puppy food: Of course you’ll need puppy food. Puppy food is different from dog food, it contains the exact nutrients needed by growing puppy. Typically, you feed your puppy this food until he is six month or a year old. You can consult your veterinarian for how long you should feed him puppy food.
Food bowl: Choose a ceramic puppy bowl that is less likely to be mistaken as toy by your puppy. Heavier food bowl also makes it less likely for the puppy to overturn it and spill the content on the floor.
First Aid Medicine: Hopefully you would never have to use this, but it’s always better to be prepared. Consult your veterinarian about the medicines your puppy may need. Anti-flea and diarrhea pills are usually what you need the most.
Vitamin and Supplement: There will be a day when your puppy doesn’t seem to be as lively or lost his appetite. Vitamin and supplement can help fulfill the nutrients that are lacking from his diet during those days.
Dog shampoo: Your puppy will need bath regularly. Bathing removes dead skin cells and excess sebum. It will also control dust mites and allergies. Choose shampoo without unnecessary chemicals like coloring or perfume.
Dental cleaning products: Teeth are integral part of your puppy. Without proper care, they will be filled with plaque and may decay. Bring your puppy to vet for check up regularly, meanwhile you can perform daily dental care at home with toothbrushes, dental gel, or with dental chews and treats.
Towel: After bath, a large, soft, and warm fluffy towel will comfort your puppy from the (usually) unpleasant experience of bathing. Choose high quality towel for durability.
Brushes: The fluffier your puppy, the more he needs brushing. Brushing regularly untangle mats and softens the hair. It will also help remove loose hair. Brush your dog once every other day for optimum result.
Training pads: If your puppy is not yet housebroken, this is a must have item. Sure, it isn’t a good decoration for your house, but your puppy will urinate and defecate frequently and you don’t want to have those on your floor. Put several pads all around the house so your puppy doesn’t have to go far (and doesn’t make it!) when the need hits.
Collar: Collar is a stylish item for puppy. There are whole varieties of collars on the market, from all colors and designs. The most important thing when you put collar on your puppy is to adjust it as your little friend grows so it won’t choke him.
ID tag: Put your puppy’s ID tag on his collar. The tag should contain his name, your name, your contact information, his medical condition, and his temperament. In case your little friend ever get lost or sneak away, ID tag will help him back home.
Leash/ Harness: When you’re walking with him in public, it’s better to put him on leash in case he runs away too fast for you catch up. Leash works fine for pet, but in case you want him to be more comfortable, you can opt for harness instead. Leash puts pressure on your puppy’s neck, while harness spreads the pressure on your puppy’s upper body instead so it is relatively more comfortable.
Dog Clothes: Well, this one is not really a must-have, but who doesn’t want to see their puppy in adorable or cool clothes? You can dress your puppy with your favorite team’s jumper or even match his clothes with your outfit of the day! You’ll want to snap some photos of him in those adorable outfits. Who knows he can be a celebrity puppy in social media?
Toys: Puppy, like children (and hey, even adults!), likes to play. He’ll have an energy level that is, sadly, above you. So, keep him entertained with dog toys. From balls to dolls to chewy stick, the options for dog toys are as many as options for children’s toy! Choose your puppy’s toys carefully. Avoid small objects he may mistakes as food.
Poop bag: If you’re taking him to walk with you, be a responsible pet owner by bringing along poop bag. Who knows when your little hairy friend will have his bowel movement? Dog poop can contain dangerous bacteria and if you leave it around, other dogs may touch or eat the poop and get sick.
Whew, that was a lot of things! However, investing in them will make your puppy parenting experience a whole lot easier. Also, there are a lot of affordable options with quality available today so you don’t have to worry about the cost. But the most important of all: if you have decided to be a parent for a puppy, give him the proper care and affection he deserves.
Have fun with your puppy!