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What Supplies Do I Need for My New Dog?

There’s no better time than the present to think about adopting a new dog or puppy.  There are thousands of dogs and puppies waiting to find a new home and a loving owner in shelters all across Canada.  If you’re thinking about bringing home a new furry pal for the first time, however, the prospect can be overwhelming.  What are the most important dog supplies for a first time pet owner?  Here is a quick dog supply checklist so that you can get started on the right foot (or paw).

The Basics:

·    Food and water bowl (and food and water, of course).  These are some of the most basic, obvious supplies your new puppy is going to need.  Look for healthy, organic dog food which contains the best ingredients and provides your dog with the necessary daily requirements.

·    Leash and collar.  These are essential for training purposes and prevent your dog from wandering off when you go on walks.  A collar also identifies a dog if he does manage to get away from you so that he can find his way back home again.  

·    Dog house for outdoor dogs.  If your dog will be spending time in your backyard, you will need to have a shelter of some sort so that your dog can stay comfortable in rainy or sunny conditions.

·    Veterinarian and insurance plan.  You will need to choose a local veterinarian to take care of your dog if he gets sick or injured.  When you adopt, you will want to take your dog to the vet for a basic checkup straight away so you can identify any issues that may need to be dealt with right away and in the future.  This is also a great time to shop for a dog insurance plan to cover routine care and emergencies.

What to Buy Next:
These supplies are not as essential as the basic supplies listed above, but your dog will appreciate them, and when they are within your budget, you should look into buying some or all of them.  These will assist with training, hygiene, and comfort.  You can buy many dog supplies online.

·    Dog bed.  If your dog sleeps at the foot of your bed, this is not as essential, but if your dog sleeps on the floor, a bed will keep him cozy.  

·    Dog crate (if applicable).

·    Treats.  These are excellent for training and positive reinforcement, and also will make your dog happy.

·    Dog toys.  Dogs love chew toys and plus toys.  A well-trained dog will take care of his toys and not destroy them.  Chew toys relieve boredom and are useful for puppies.  The process of breaking in adult teeth can be painful, and chew toys can help relieve the pain.  Chew toys also prevent your dog from chewing on plush toys, pillows, couches, clothing, and other items.  This is also a matter of training, but good training starts with the right supplies on hand.

·    Dog grooming supplies.  These include a brush or comb for longhaired dogs and shampoo which is safe for your dog.  Clippers and strippers can help you to remove debris from your dog’s coat and keep it from getting knotted up.

·    Dog carrier (if applicable; these are used for smaller dogs).

·    Dog toothbrush and toothpaste for proper oral hygiene.  

·    Dog clothes and boots.  These supplies may not sound essential, but they are more than just fashionable.  In areas where the ground gets particularly cold or hot, boots can protect your dog’s feet when you go out on walks.  Dog clothes can also help keep your dog comfortable in harsh climates.  Many areas of Canada experience cold, snowy winters, and a doggie coat can help keep your pooch from getting too cold when you go out.

Taking care of a new dog means a lot of responsibility, and many pet owners underestimate the cost in terms of supplies as well as training and time.  It’s important to know what you are getting into before you decide to adopt.  Adopting a dog can be a very rewarding choice, and a well-cared-for dog is a happy one!

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