Everything First-Time Dog Owners Need to Buy During Their New Pup’s First Week Home
Getting a new dog, whether it's a rambunctious puppy or a senior living out their golden years, is an incredible feeling. Adopting a dog during this time of staying at home is also a wonderful thing to do, and affords you lots of time to spend training and bonding. Beyond the excitement, however, you'll need to think through all the things you need to have on hand to make sure your new doggo is living their best life. Plus, you need to be ready for the big adjustment both of you are going to have to make. So, to all first-time dog owners: listen up. Here's what you need to have ready and waiting for when your new pup comes home.
Crate training is hugely important for your dog, especially if it's a puppy still learning the ways of potty training. Their crate ($26) should act as their cozy home where they can feel comforted and have their own space. How you go about crate training is for each owner to decide, but you should at least have one at your disposal, ready to go.
Flea and Tick Protection
An absolute must on your list of things to have ready for your new doggo is flea and tick control. Fleas can cause dogs to go a little crazy with itching, biting, and licking. Plus, each adult female flea can lay up to 40 to 50 eggs per day. These eggs will fall off into the environment wherever an infested animal goes, leading to sources of new fleas to infest your dog in the coming weeks (or months).
Luckily, you can help protect your dog from fleas and ticks with FRONTLINE® Plus for Dogs. One monthly topical application can kill adult fleas, flea eggs, flea larvae, and ticks for a full 30 days. A bonus: FRONTLINE® Plus is waterproof, so you can feel comfortable taking them on outdoor adventures — or just to the bath. Just remember, your dog needs to be dry at the time FRONTLINE® Plus is applied and remain dry 24 hours after application.
Make easy flea and tick protection part of your dog's monthly routine from the get-go to help fight these blood-sucking parasites.
An Anti-Anxiety Bed
Even if your pup spends most of their time on the couch or bed with you, it's good to have a plush, cozy calming dog bed ($37) for them. Starting life in a new place can be a little overwhelming for a pup, so a cuddly spot that they can make their own is helpful. You can also use it in their crate and add their favorite toy or old t-shirt that smells like you.
A Collar and Tag
Before your new dog comes home, you'll want to have a tag made with their name and your contact info on it, attached to a collar ($48). Choose a durable collar like the one below from Found My Animal that will withstand any rough and tumble activities (or puppy chewing) that they embark on. Many states require you to register your dog, so be sure to check the requirements for your state and city, which can usually be done online. Same goes for vaccines including rabies, so make sure you have an appointment on the books with your vet.
A Toy to Keep Them Occupied
When properly training your dog, you'll want to set aside times when you're not interacting with them, whether they're on their own bed or in their crate, so they learn to be independent and hopefully not have too much separation anxiety. During these times, you'll want to give them a toy that will keep them occupied and their brain working, like a Kong Classic Dog Toy ($8). Fill it with peanut butter (or your dog's favorite treats), freeze it, and let them spend hours trying to get the yummy stuff out.
Especially with new puppies, you'll want to get them used to being touched, from their paws to their ears to their mouths. This will make it easier in the long run to do things like clip nails and give medications. Keeping your pup's nails trimmed is beneficial for both of you — you won't get scratched and the pup will be more comfortable. Grab a set with clippers and a grinder ($17), especially if you have a dog with itty bitty toes.
Stain and Odor Spray
Any pet owner knows how essential Nature's Miracle Dog Stain & Odor Remover Spray ($6) is to have in the house. No matter how well trained your dog is, there's bound to be some icky stuff that ends up in your home, whether it's a potty training accident, a middle-of-the-night puke, or trailed-in-from-the-yard poop. Having a stain and odor spray that's specific to animals is a must, even beyond puppydom and well into adulthood.
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