If you walk in to any pet store, you’ll immediately spot out the basics – cage, food, leash, toys, etc. The stores are filled with everything you could possibly need for your new puppy! And a lot of things you could probably live without 🙂 . Prior to bringing home our little doberman girl, Reagan, I scouerd the isles off all the local pet stores trying to decide amongst the zillions of products that all seemed necessary to a new puppy mom! Fast forward 2 months I realized that there were a several surprising puppy supplies I wish I would have had prior to bringing her home.
Click on any of the images below for details on the product.
Now here’s why I chose each of these …
1 Old towels for bedding | We initially purchased a comfy bed for Reagan, which she promptly chewed right through! Embarrassingly, the switch to towels didn’t occur until she had destroyed TWO beds. Once she gets a little older, and a lot less destructive, we’ll move back to giving her a real bed. For now, the towels are working pretty well.
2 House training door bell | Our dog sitter recommended this after babysitting Reagan shortly after we got her. The concept is that your puppy will literally ‘ring the bell’ when she has to use the bathroom. Surprisingly Reagan caught on to this so quickly. The consolation was that the bell rings so often that I think I hear it in my sleep! I chose to get the white one to blend in to our door so it wasn’t SO noticeable.
3 Training Clicker | Per the recommendation of our puppy training class we purchased a couple training clickers and kept them by our sides at all times. It was a lot of work at the beginning, but repeatedly ‘clicking’ for good behavior expedited her training. Similar to the doggy door bells, I can also hear ‘clicks’ in my sleep!
4 Harness | Reagan was a stubborn little puppy right from the beginning so her collar just wasn’t enough. The harness was SOOO incredibly helpful in training her to go on walks.
5 Water gun | I think Joe & I had a little too much fun with this one! We used the water gun to help train Reagan. She’d get a squirt every time she jumped up on the counters & beds. She got so much water that it almost counted as a bath!
6 Lots and LOTS of poop bags | Although I don’t know how many diapers a newborn baby goes through daily, I’m convinced that Reagan could rival any baby with her poop bags. I was pleasantly surprised that this one also came with a dispenser to put on her leash for easy use.
7 Baby gate | Probably Reagan’s least favorite item on this list, but it was a life saver. We opted for both a dog pen (below) and a simple baby gate for our stairs. Reagan did chew the wood baby gate a little, so a metal one might have been better. Yet for the cheap price, I’m still glad I got the wooden one.
8 Basket for toys | Puppy toys are now consuming our entire family room! We tried to store these in a nice cotton basket, but Reagan assumed the basket WAS the toy and chewed completely through it. I then opted for an old popcorn tin that I transformed into this fun DIY project.
9 Long leash | I really appreciated that we purchased this long leash early on before Reagan was old enough to go to a dog park. We would take her to open field areas and let her run around, letting out some of that puppy energy. I know that a lot of people take their puppies off leash, but I just get too nervous that Reagan will run. Everything and anything catches her eye and distracts her. (last week she went CRAZY barking at a plastic bag blowing in the air 🙂 ).
10 ‘Smart’ toys | When I first got Reagan I had NO idea what a smart toy was. I mean I’m not planning on sending Reagan to Harvard or anything. But apparently a smart toy is one that will keep her entertained and stimulated for a while. Regardless if she gets any smarter, I’m down with that!
11 Puppy Coat | In Seattle not only is a winter coat essential, so is a rain jacket 🙂 . Joking aside, dobermans are somewhat sensitive to cold weather and Reagan would shiver when outside at night so a puppy coat was worth it. I got a bigger size for her as she’s growing like crazy and I new she would grow in to it before the season was over (she also actually grew OUT it during that season too!).
12 Rope toys | We held off on giving Reagan bones while she was a puppy as she had a lot of tummy problems at the beginning. I had no idea the hour and HOURS of tug of war I was in for with these toys though!
13 Food storage container | Although not absolutely essential, I liked putting her food into a clear storage container as opposed to having the bags and bags of dog food sitting around. Whether storing the food in the kitchen or in a closet, it just looks better in a plastic container. This one also came with a food scooper too.
14 Food bowl tray | After using a cheap flimsy mat to put Reagan’s food on, I ended up purchasing this tray. It was much more sturdy and had higher sides to prevent all the water spills that Reagan makes! Once I noticed our wood floor starting to warp from Reagan’s play time (aka – eating time), I knew we needed to switch to something more durable.
Now for a RARE glimpse at Reagan quietly napping 🙂 .
Any other surprising puppy essentials that I missed?
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