Before you get your new puppy, it is sensible to collect all the things you are likely to need for them over the first few weeks. Here are a few suggestions.
- A complete balanced puppy food. Most breeders will give you a bag of the food your puppy is on. This will minimise tummy upsets. Choose a good quality puppy food eg Burns, Eukanuba, or James Wellbeloved are really good. Mix a little of your chosen food in with the breeders food, gradually increasing the amount of the new food and decreasing the amount of the old food, until puppy is eating 100% of the new food. Avoid foods containing colourings and flavourings as these could be harmful to your puppy, or could make them hyper. In this instance, the old addage of “You get what you pay for” applies. Choose the best and stick with it. Don’t be tempted to constantly switch foods or puppy will end up with a tummy upset. Tinned foods can contain up to 80% water and quickly goes off once opened. Dry foods are highly digestible, nutritious, convenient, and will keep for weeks once opened. Always ensure that fresh water is available at all times. Feed 4 meals a day initially, gradually reducing to 1 or 2 meals by the time puppy is 6 – 8 months old.
- A soft blanket with the scent of the litter on will help the puppy to feel “at home”. This can be given to the breeder a week or so before you pick up your puppy.
- An Adaptil plug-in diffuser or spray will simulate the mothers natural calming pheromones and will help settle a restless puppy.
- Newspapers – lots of newspapers!
- Toys. Solid rubber balls and rings are good as are Nylabones. Avoid soft toys which can be chewed, squeaky toys which will drive you mad and flexible toys which won’t stand up to the puppy’s teething.
- Training Treats. Begin training right away with small treats. Tiny pieces of cheese or garlic sausage are good, but commercial treats are also available. Treat for toileting, sitting and coming. This will give you a heads start when it comes to training class!
- Stainless steel, non-tipping food and water bowls. Puppy will not be able to chew these!
- An ID tag with your details (Surname, address, telephone number, and your vets details)
- A puppy collar (this will need to be changed regularly until puppy is fully grown), and a lightweight leash.
- Grooming equipment (brush, comb and puppy shampoo).
- Stain remover for those little “accidents” and a deodorant spray. Poo bags for when puppy is outside.
- A crate large enough for him to stand up and turn around in when he is adult. These crates make ideal sleeping “dens” for a new puppy and are a safe means of transporting them in the car.