Prepare for your pup Anticipating your pup’s arrival is an exciting time.  By preparing you can alleviate stress for you as well as your new pup.  We have made a list we hope will be helpful in your start with your new family member and included products we feel are less than acceptable or even dangerous.  Remember you are welcoming a toddler with four legs who will explore their world with their teeth. ~ Puppy proof your home.  Determine an area where your pup will spend time.  Anything that is on the floor is fair game to a nosey puppy.  If you have children, it is especially important to look for any possible hazards such as small toy parts laying around the home.  Remove any breakable items and hide electrical wires out of your pup’s reach. ~Have a family discussion on your puppies’ vocabulary.  Agree on words that you would like to use for commands such as going outside to relieve themselves.  If one person says “go potty” and the other person says “let’s go out” it will only confuse the pup.  Consistency is the key with a new pup.  Repetition using the same words as a family unit will help the puppy during the learning process. ~Determine a schedule including feed times and potty times while assigning who in the family will be responsible.  Keep to your schedule and make it a part of your routine.  Remember a puppy needs a consistent routine throughout the day both for feeding and elimination. ~Purchase supplies in advance. The food you choose for your puppy should be all natural free of wheat and by products.  We will provide you with the brand name that we feel confident is proper nutrition.  We will supply you with a small amount to get you started. Choose treats wisely.  Many products today are commercialized to get your interest but are not necessarily healthy for your puppy.  Treats that resemble play dough are filled with sugars and dyes that are so unhealthy for your puppy.  There are dental sticks on the market said to help tartar control when in all actuality are dangerous.  These chew treats have been known to cause bowel obstructions.  Products made in China have a history of recall with high incidence of sickly dogs.  Perhaps not all of them have but err on the safe side and look for products made in the USA. Toys are essential for your pup’s well being.  They can also be dangerous.  Be selective in choosing toys.  Bowel obstruction and choking can be a concern.  Your puppy will need strong toys that can handle chewing.  Toys stuffed with polyfill and squeakies are hazardous when damaged.  Rawhide is often treated with poisonous chemicals to treat the leather.  Softened rawhide is sticky and pasty and has been known to cause intestinal blockage.  We recommend tough toys made by Kong.  By keeping a careful eye on your puppy while he or she plays, you will soon know what toys can stand up to your pups potential.  We also recommend a site called who provide toys made for dogs with strong jaws.  Remember if it is small enough to fit in their mouths, it is small enough to swallow.  Always discard damaged toys for safety. Crate training your puppy is highly recommended.  Please visit our link for training tips.  The size of the crate should be based on the size of your puppy.  It should be enough room to get up, move around and lie comfortably stretched out.  We begin by using an airline crate with bedding.  Metal crates should be introduced under supervision.  Some puppies will try to chew the bars.  Their mouth and paws can get caught if they are too rambunctious.  If your pup chews the airline crate, they are not ready to be introduced to the metal crates.  It will take time and patience.  Always remember to provide water to your puppy at all times.  Include an indestructible toy for boredom even though your pup will most likely sleep while you are away. Bedding helps comfort joints from hard surfaces.  We recommend beds made of eggshell rather than polyfill.  If your puppy is going through a destructive stage, the bed can also become a part of their entertainment.  Eggshell is safer in the case that your pup accidentally ingests it.  Polyfill can bind the bowel and even cause blockage.  Never assume your puppy will appreciate the bedding rather than destroy it.  Everything is a toy when they are young.  If your pup is a chewer it is best to gradually introduce the bed so it is associated with comfort instead of a giant stuffed toy. Dog bowls come in various shapes and sizes.  We recommend using stainless steel with adjustable raised tables meant for a growing puppy.  The dishes are virtually indestructible and last throughout the years.  Your pup should be fed from a raised surface rather than eating from a dish on the floor.  Proper placement of the food dish at shoulder height is recommended to avoid air intake while eating.  This is also more comfortable for the pup.  Your chances of your dog bloating are lessened when using a raised table unit.  Designer ceramic dishes can not withstand a strong playful pup that may find amusement picking up the dish and tossing it.  If it breaks, sharp edges could cut your puppy.  Plastic dishes are wonderful play toys and are also known to cause acne.  Clean your water dishes several times a day and food dishes after every meal to avoid bacterial growth. Choosing a collar is just as important in the training of your puppy as well as skills your puppy will have as an adult.  Your puppy will have a leash and collar to take home however, your puppy will grow quickly.  Buckle and snap collars are an easy escape achieved by simply backing out.  At times the buckles and snaps will break.  Pinch collars and choker chains are not acceptable collars.  The use of these items are not meant to be used as collars and can essentially cause tracheal damage as well as air restriction.  We recommend  collars known as Martingale, Premier and Greyhound collars.  These collars are adjustable for growth.  They are made especially for dogs with thicker necks in comparison to their heads.  Instilling leash manners while your puppy is young is preferred and highly advisable but in the case you have a free spirited puppy that will welcome the opportunity to break free, this particular collar is the safest in our opinion as it closes when the puppy pulls in either direction.  Harnesses are a disaster when beginning to train your puppy to walk on a leash.  While it may feel like your dog has less strength, the body is actually being conditioned with centered strength.  Converting from a harness to a leash is a challenge.  Please refer to teaching your puppy leash manners found on our website.  *We recommend removing collars when your pup is not supervised.  Proper leashes are meant to add control of your dog in a public environment.  A six foot nylon lead with a suitable clip is recommended.  If you are a generous owner that wants to occasionally allow a longer distance of freedom, purchase a 20 foot nylon lead for play.  Use a different command when attaching this lead.  Retractable leads are a nightmare.  It teaches your pup to pull at full extension simply because the mechanism allows you to control the length you would like to give your dog at any given time.   The handle on retractable leads do not allow for a secure grip.  If your pup decides to dart at any given time, you could very well lose your puppy simply because the handle slipped out of your hand.  The line extending from the handle can easily snap or sever.  First and foremost, training is the most important aspect of a well behaved dog.  Walking your pet should be enjoyable. ~Schedule a veterinary check up well in advance.  Your puppy will have a vaccination and worming schedule every several weeks.  Better to have that appointment rather than being forced to wait for availability if your vet has a tight schedule. ~Keep an emergency kit on hand for your puppy.  Nutrical (is a high calorie dietary supplement for finicky eaters.  It contains vitamins and an added source of energy) Rectal thermometer or a pet ear thermometer. Gauze, horse wrap, first aid tape, Light Karo syrup, Pepto tablets or liquid, children’s buffered aspirin, Hydrogen peroxide, Betadine solution, antibiotic ointment such as Neosporin, rubbing alcohol, sterile saline eye solution, cotton swabs and Benedryl are all items to be kept on hand  and used under the instruction of your veterinarian. If you prefer to buy a ready made kit a good choice would include Medi Pet Deluxe First Aid Kit found at  or the Hiker First Aid Kit for Canines found at First Aid guides can be found at include the First Aid companion for Dogs and Cats as well as The Dog Owner’s Home Veterinary Handbook. ~Purchase an enzyme remover for your carpets made especially for pet safety
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