Welcome to my Dog Blog!

In the months ahead I will be sharing a wide array of information on subjects including but not limited to: Selection of a new puppy, proper diet for puppies and dogs, potty training, teaching basic commands, safe toys, breaking the habit of car chasing, stopping/biting, good dog breeding habits, how to register with (AKC) American Kennel Club, how to place your puppies into proper homes, how to donate to pet charities, just to name a few. I hope you will find this blog informative and I always welcome comments, questions or suggestions.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

"Essentials for Your New Puppy or Dog"

     Before you bring your new puppy or dog home you will need to have some essentials on hand. You may be able purchase some of these items later, but if you have most of them on hand early on it will make your life much less stressful.

Below  is list of  essential items:

1.     PUPPY/DOG FOOD. A good quality food is a must for the healthy development of your puppy or dog. Please read my post dated 1/7/10 which lists the vital ingredients that a quality puppy or dog food should contain. There are also listed several foods that a canine should never eat!

2.     SMALL TREATS made without artificial preservatives or dyes. Use sparingly!

3.     FOOD & WATER DISHES.  Choose a size appropriate for your breed of dog or puppy.

4.     CRATE or KENNEL.  If you will be  keeping your new puppy or dog inside at any time, then you will need an inside crate if he/she is not yet potty training completely.  The crate will also  serve   as a sleeping and time out area where your pet can feel really safe. The metal see through type really works the best since the puppy/dog can then be able to see out  and not feel as though  he/she were in  dark confinement.  It is extremely important to choose a size appropriate for your breed of canine. This will guarantee that the puppy/dog will have ample room to move around in it.  He/she should be able to stand completely up with headspace above the head. Also, he/she should be able to lay down completely stretched out. 
     If your pet will be living outside at any time, then you will need either the appropriate fencing or an outside kennel large enough and tall enough to keep he/she safely inside.
*USING A CHAIN TIE OUT OF ANY KIND IS DAMAGING TO YOUR  DOG  AND SHOULD BE AVOIDED! Many dog protective agencies feel chaining a dog to actually be abusive. Depending on where you live...........you may receive a fine and/or have your dog removed from your custody.
*ALSO,  your puppy/dog should be in his inside or outside kennel for limited periods of time. Over confinement can lead to physical, mental & emotional growth  deformaties and abnormalities.

5.      A BLANKET OR DOG PILLOW. This will give your puppy or dog something soft to lay on. If Your puppy/dog will be living outside, then a nice bed of straw inside his/her dog house works pretty well.

6.       DOG HOUSE. This is must if your canine friend will be living outside or left outside while you are away from the home. There are many types and sizes. Choose one that is appropriate for your dog breed. Some even come adaptable for heaters and floor heating pads. If you are particularly energetic and love a good building project, there are many dog house plans available either online
or at your local home building center.

7.        A MESH KENNEL COVER. These mesh kennel covers are available at many home building centers, farm supply stores,  pet supply stores or through online retailers. The mesh kennel cover provides shade from the hot summer heat over the kennel area and are a faily inexpensive
way to keep your puppy or dog  from overexposure to the summer sun's heat.

8.        COLLAR & LEASH. Purchase a size appropriate for the canine breed and size. If you have a large
breed and are considering a pronged type walking collar, some do come with protective rubber rubber tips which are much more safe for you dog.

9.         TOYS.     Yes, dog need toys, too.  They need and crave active stimulation through play and interaction with humans or other canines. Some toys can be easily chewed or torn up leaving your puppy/dog open for an accident or choking, so choose his/her toys wisely and carefully. I've found that the heavy duty extra durable rubber toys seem to hold up the best.
      Most dogs and puppies love a good ball. Choose a rubber type that is larger than his/her mouth opening. The tennis ball types will come apart pretty quickly and may cause a choking incident.

10.       DOG OBEDIENCE CRATE/POTTY TRAINING DVD OR BOOK. Widely available through online retailers and professional dog training websites.    Teaching your puppy or dog manners will ensure a greater degree of happiness between you and your pet.

11.       DVD OR BOOK SPECIFIC TO YOUR DOG BREED.  Having a reference manual  or DVD  specific to your dog breed will help you  be educated in his/her genetically inherited  traits.   This will be valuable to you during your puppy/ dogs development and training.  It will also inform you of any genetic illnesses or health issues that you need to be on the alert for.

12.       GROOMING BRUSH.  Brushing your puppy on  a regular basis will definately make it an easier task later on since he/she will used to the brush. Some puppies tend to bite at the brush at first, but will soon will really enjoy the grooming session.

13.       DOG SHAMPOO.   At least every month it's a good idea to give your puppy or dog a bath. Use a shampoo with coat conditioner. Starting your pup early will make the task easier later.

14.       FLEA &  HEARTWORM CONTROL.  It is vital to make sure your puppy/dog is on a monthly regiment of heartworm control. There are several brands on the market.   Discuss this with your vet.  You will need to purchase it at the vets' office or get a prescription for it if you are ordering it online.
     Also,  it important to keep  fleas and ticks under control!  A dog can become very ill due to flea infestation and it is very uncomfortable for your pet to be bitten constantly by fleas or having fleas and ticks feed on their  blood.  There are several brands of flea and tick control available.
      I have personally found that Frontine administered once a month  works very efficiently. Buying it in a 3 or 6 month pack will save you quite a bit of money in the long run.
     Some  vet's will give you a free puppy pack with these two items included in it when you take your puppy in to the office for first exam and immunizations.

15.       AN ABUNDANCE OF LOVE & AFFECTION!  Displaying love and affection to your new puppy or dog will go a long way towards his physical, emotional, and mental health. He/she will be calmer and easier to obedience or potty train. There is no other place in the world that your puppy or dog would rather be than with you. So enjoy spending  plenty of time with him or her  going  for walks,  playing ball, teaching new tricks or just petting and praising.
     These are some items that I have personally found essential for the new puppy or dog owner. You may know of other items that would be useful.

Answer to last "What Dog Breed Is This?"   Golden Retriever.  Belongs to the "Sporting" group.
Average size is 55 to 75 pounds. Devoted companions, hunting dog. Developed by Lord Tweedmouth in the Scottish Highlands during the 1800's. Cross between Yellow Retriever and now extinct Tweed Water Spaniel. Golden Retrievers are very energetic and need plenty of excercise. Water repellent double coat needs regular brushing as it sheds seasonally.
"WHAT DOG BREED IS THIS?"  This breed is the 5th most AKC registered in 2009. Please Post your answer.

 ***  The new AKC 2009 statistics are now available...
1. Labrador Retriever
2. German Shepherd Dog
3. Yorkshire Terrier
4. Golden Retriever
     The German Shepherd Dog and the Yorkshire Terrier changed positions in 2009. Apparently,  the Labrador Retriever is risking losing the number one spot to the German Shepherd Dog. We will have to wait until next year to find out what happens.