Dog adoptions have reached record levels during the COVID pandemic. If you are thinking about adopting a new dog and being part of this nationwide trend, make sure you have everything you need to welcome your need canine companion into your home. While it is easy to get caught up in the excitement, adopting a dog is a big deal. In order to promote a smooth transition, it is important to prepare your home for the new addition. Preparing for your new furry friend means buying essential supplies, making your home pet-proof, assigning pet care responsibilities, finding a veterinarian, and taking additional steps to ensure smooth transition.
Make sure you have all the essentials:
• Food & Treats-Find out what kind of food your puppy or adult dog was eating and buy the same. Switching foods abruptly can lead to diarrhea, or worse, your new dog may refuse to eat it. If you wish to change their diet, be sure to gradually transition your dog by slowly mixing in the new food. Likewise ask if your new pooch has any favorite treats you should have handy for training and encouragement.
Food and water bowls are available in a variety of colors and styles. They can be made of plastic, ceramic, or metal. When choosing bowls for your dog, pick based on your dog’s size, desired durability, and your personal sense of style.
• Tags and Microchips– As a veterinarian who has worked at an animal shelter, I have personally witnessed what happens when a lost pet is brought in without an ID tag or microchip. Without a way to reach-out to their family, the odds of reuniting them are slim. Make sure your new dog has an ID tag and microchip. They can make the difference between reuniting with your lost pet or them becoming another lost dog statistic.
• Collars, Harnesses & Leashes– You will also need a collar and leash to bring your new canine friend home and for walks, outings, and veterinary visits. A collar is also essential to attach their ID tags. If your new pup pulls on the leash or has a delicate neck, consider getting a harness too. When choosing a collar, leash, and harness, make sure they are the right size and pick based on your pet’s needs (i.e. strength, durability, ruggedness). Otherwise, have fun and choose something that matches you and your dog’s sense of style. Susan Lanci Designs has an extensive collection of high quality, super fashionable collars, harnesses, leashes, and other accessories. Many are even bedazzled with real Swarovski crystals for extra sparkle!
• Dog Bed–
You want your new pooch to feel welcome and at home. Buy them their own bed to make them feel more secure in their new environment. Harry Barker has a large selection of cozy, comfortable, and easy to maintain beds.
• Crate– Buying a crate is also a must do. Crate training your new pup will make housetraining easier. Besides helping with housetraining, crate training will help your pup feel secure while you are away and will keep them out of trouble. There are many options, from utilitarian wire crates, to plastic crates If you’re not crazy about adding a crate to your home décor consider getting a “furniture crate” that seamlessly fits into your home décor and can double as an end table. Don’t forget you’ll need a bed for your pet’s new crate. Susan Lanci Designs has collection of plush beds for small to medium-sized dogs that look great and can fit easily inside a crate.
• Toys– Finally, don’t forget about toys to keep your new pooch entertained. I recommend choosing a variety of toys (these are some of my dog’s favorites from RuffWear) to find out what your pet prefers. Bouncy balls, chew toys, squeaky toys, and toys you can stuff with treats are not only fun for your pet, but also keep your dog busy and out of trouble. Otherwise your pup might decide that your favorite pair of shoes can double as a chew toy.
• Apparel– Though not technically a necessity, buying clothes for your dog can definitely be fun activity. You can choose clothes that serve a function, like jackets and sweaters to keep your pet warm during the winter and clothes that are simply fun and fashionable. Collaroy has a selection of adorable shirts, dresses, sweaters, and jackets for your dog’s wardrobe.
Be sure to check back next week for my blog about how to pet-proof your home!