Getting a new puppy? What you need and training tips
Welcoming a new puppy into your home? You will have to put in some quality time but, if you look after and train your new companion well, you will reap the benefits for years to come.
Here you will find the answer to your question: “What do I need for a puppy?” and some tips and tricks for training a puppy. Parenting is a lot of work but the right puppy supplies will make it easier for both of you right from the start. Preparation is the key!
What do I need for a puppy?
Puppies need quite a few things to ensure that they grow into strong and healthy dogs. Once you have decided to bring a new dog into your home you will already be wondering “What do I need for a puppy”. You will be well prepared if you buy the puppy supplies you need before the pup actually arrives.
To help you along, we have prepared a list of all the essentials.
Puppy supplies for health
- Dewormer: You pup should be dewormed regularly from birth. For this you should use a dewormer recommended by your vet. Deworm your puppy monthly up to six months of age. Then you can switch to the adult deworming program.
- Treatment against fleas: Fleas are very annoying, not only for your dog, but also for the rest of the household. They also pose a number of health risks. When you collect your new family member from the breeder or the shelter you should check with them whether the pup has already been treated for fleas.
- Ear cleaner: Use a special ear cleaner for dogs to keep the puppy’s ears clean.
- Eye ointment: Your puppy's eyes are very sensitive and young dogs often suffer from eye irritations or even eye infections. Always have eye ointment for dogs available to treat any eye problems right away.
- Puppy food: You will obviously have to feed your pet. The nutritional needs of puppies are different from those of adult dogs. Puppy food contains more fats which they need for their rapid growth and high energy levels.
Everyday puppy supplies
These items will help your puppy to grow up healthy and well-behaved.
- Potty training aids: Young dogs aren’t potty trained yet, which means that when they have the urge to relieve themselves they do it wherever they find themselves. You should start potty training a puppy as soon as you bring them home. A variety of special aids are available to help you with this task.
- Crate or basket: A dog crate or basket provides your dog with a safe place to rest and is also an important part of training a puppy.
- Toys: Puppy toys come in all shapes and sizes and it is important to keep them entertained with toys. Toys are fun and could also help with puppy training.
- Water and food bowls: Your dog will need their own food and water bowls. Ideally they should be the right height so that your puppy can easily reach their food or water while standing in a comfortable position.
- Food: Initially you should feed your puppy the same food they were getting and then change gradually to any new food brand. For the first few months you should feed puppy food but there are so many choices available. We recommend that you examine the ingredients of all the different foods carefully before deciding on a brand.
Puppy supplies for when you leave the house
We have already covered a lot of things you need, but the list is still not complete. There are more puppy supplies for when you go out with your dog. You need to keep them safe when you take to the streets.
- A leash and a harness or collar: This ensures that you can keep the dog safely at your side when you venture further than your own garden. Attach a name tag with at least a telephone number onto your dog’s collar. If your dog does get away from you and gets lost, anyone finding them will easily be able to contact and reunite you with your pet.
- Doggy poo bags: Always take doggy poo bags along when walking your dog. There is nothing more annoying than doggy poo in the street. Once your dog has finished their business, pick up the faeces with the bag and dispose of it in a dustbin.
- Dog car harness or crate: If you are going for a drive in the car you need to ensure that both you and your dog can travel safely. You can use either a special dog car harness or a travel crate for this purpose.
Finally, you need puppy supplies to look after your dog’s skin, coat and teeth.
- Brush: Dog brushes come in a variety of different shapes, types and sizes. A dog needs regular brushing to keep their coat in top condition. The type of brush you buy will depend on your dog’s coat. Ask the pet supply store or your dog groomer for advice.
- Dog shampoo: Dogs need regular bathing and it’s best if you use special shampoo designed for dogs. Furthermore, always have a good supply of dog shampoo at hand. Puppies, in particular, love to roll in stinky things. Besides getting their coats dirty, they often end up not smelling too fresh and so you will want to bath them right away.
- Nail clipper: Make sure that your puppy’s nails don’t get too long, especially if they walk mostly around the house or on soft ground. You need a special dog nail clipper to trim your dog’s nails. If you are worried about trimming their nails yourself, ask a dog groomer or your vet.
- Toothbrush: Dental care for dogs is often forgotten, but is very important. Make sure you keep your dog's teeth healthy by brushing them regularly.
Training a puppy
Dogs are pack animals and they should learn early on who is in charge. Your new puppy will want to explore everything! Every day is a new adventure.
Always keep in mind that once you allow a specific behaviour, your puppy will carry on with it because they will think that it is allowed. Setting firm boundaries from the beginning is vital. Reward your puppy for good behaviour and punish undesirable behaviour. To clarify - by this we don’t mean any harsh punishment. Ignoring your dog when they display unwanted behaviour is usually punishment enough. They want to earn your love and attention.
Rewarding good behaviour is good parenting. When your pup gets something right, reward them within seconds or your dog won’t know what they are being rewarded for. You can reward a dog in many different ways. The most popular is to give them a small treat. Every time they do something right, give them a treat like a dog biscuit or a piece of healthy Yarrah chew stick. They will soon learn which behaviours will earn your praise.
Puppies do get into mischief and love chewing things. Young dogs are full of energy and anything new is exciting and fun. As a dog owner you need to make sure that they are not tempted to misbehave.
For example, there should be enough toys that they can chew on among the puppy supplies you buy. This should prevent them from attacking your furniture. Most often your reaction to unwanted behaviour should be to ignore it and distract their attention. Negative attention is also attention.
The most important consideration is to be consistent when you train a puppy. While this might be difficult, it is essential. If you are not alone in looking after the puppy, but a whole household is involved, you should discuss and agree on how the dog will be raised. Everyone should expect the same behaviour from the dog.
Tips and Tricks for training a puppy
Below are a few more tips and tricks for raising a happy and healthy pup.
- Feed your dog before sitting down to your own meal. Then they will be less likely to beg at the table. You could also leave your dog in their crate while you are eating.
- Both of you should have fun when you're playing with your new friend. So make sure that your pup also wins sometimes in the game you are playing.
- Provide lots of toys. Dogs should be able to keep themselves entertained when you don’t feel like playing with them or don’t have the time. So provide a variety of toys that they can have fun with.
- Young dogs need a lot of sleep, just like human babies. In the beginning a busy and active pup will only be awake for about six hours a day. The rest of the time they will be sleeping. Make sure that they are able to get enough rest, especially if you have children around who want to play with the pup.
There is no fixed script for the best way to raise a puppy because every dog has a unique personality. However, the tips we have provided will help you to lay a good foundation.
Welcoming a young dog into your home will bring endless pleasure, but you do have to prepare. Start this journey with as much information as possible and all the puppy supplies you need so that you can help your new companion to feel safe and welcome right away. Training a puppy could be a lot of fun but, to teach them well, does call for some commitment on your part.
Raising a puppy is a demanding job and part of this is to create a peaceful and consistent environment. Just like a young child, puppies need a lot of rest and sleep. Also make sure that your home is completely safe for your pup by ensuring that there are no electrical cords they can chew on or small objects they could swallow and choke on.
Once you have collected the new member of your family from the breeder or shelter you will probably be very excited to bring them home at last. But remember that it will be a huge change for your puppy and a whole world of new sights and smells. Avoid overwhelming your young dog. Allow them to just settle in for the first few days, giving them time and space to get used to their new home and family members at their own pace.
A final tip. Put some old rugs down if you have very smooth floors. Not only will slipping and sliding all the time frustrate your pup, but it could also damage their growing joints.
A dog provides wonderful company and countless other benefits for your family. We hope that we will have helped you to enjoy the brief time during which your new dog is young. With good training you will enjoy their love and companionship for many years to come and they will feel comfortable and safe within the family circle.