Adopting a dog “The secret to a successful Adoption” Part 9
Purchasing Your Dog’s Supplies
There is much more to having a dog live in your home than dog food and toys. Thinking about the supplies he will need well in advance of bringing him home, assures you of a smooth transition from living without a dog to having one feel completely at home with you. While the breed of dog you are adopting is relevant to the supplies he will need, you can start with the basics and adjust them to whatever is appropriate for your breed.
Food and water dishes are available in three basic styles. These include individual dishes, connected dishes, and dishes which hold and dispense the products. You can decide which style is more convenient for you.
Dogs usually fare better if they are consistently given one kind of dog food. In addition to dry, canned, and dog food which requires adding water, there are plenty of different kinds on the market. From all-natural dog food without any artificial ingredients, to dog food with extra vitamins, to dog food specially made for a dog’s age and development, you can feel quite overwhelmed when trying to choose the right one for your new pet. Even if you have owned dogs in the past, it is a good idea to ask your veterinarian to recommend the most appropriate dog food for your new dog.
Grooming supplies also belong on your list of items to purchase before you bring your
pet home. While the specific supplies you purchase depend on the kind of dog you are adopting, most dogs do require some amount of maintenance. A brush that is just for him, non-toxic shampoo made specially for dogs or puppies, and his own bath towel, are the basics.
Your dog may benefit from health aids, such as vitamin supplements. They can help even the healthiest pet to stay at his best. You can ask your veterinarian or the breeder about the specific type of supplements he should have. They may advise you to feed him vitamin-fortified dog food, or separate supplements.
Of course your new pet needs toys. Not only will toys give him the chance to play and have fun, it can also decrease his desire to chew on your personal possessions and furniture. If you get him some toys that he can play with by himself, as well as toys to use during his playtime with you, he will be happier and not so destructive.
When you are choosing toys for your new dog, there are two points to keep in mind. First, choose toys that are appropriate to your dog’s size, breed, and age. For example, a toy that is suitable for a large dog is useless to a puppy. Second, while toys which are made specifically for dogs are non-toxic and unbreakable, checking to be sure before buying them can prevent disaster. Avoiding toys made of wood which can splinter, anything that could shatter or break, and toys with small parts or paint, is absolutely essential.
Dog treats are an excellent addition to your supply list. Whether you plan to train your new dog for a specific purpose, or only want him to have a little something extra, your
dog will love his treats. You can find healthy dog treats made with your pet’s size and age in mind.
Many dog owners find rawhide products useful. One benefit to rawhide is that it is good for your pet’s teeth. Another benefit is rawhide will cater to your dog’s natural tendency to chew, so he will not be using your shoes or other personal items for this purpose. Rawhide products come in many different sizes and styles. Selecting the rawhide products suited to your dog’s size and breed is the best way to ensure that he gets all of the benefits from these chewing products.
When you are preparing your list of supplies, you need to decide whether your dog will use a dog bed, or whether you prefer other arrangements. Some dogs take to dog beds immediately, while others do not like them at all. If you want him to use a dog bed, it is important to choose the right size and material. This will make him more comfortable, as well as result in your dog being more likely to use it. However, while his comfort is essential, the bed you choose should also be easy to clean and virtually indestructible. The better condition his bed is in, the happier he will be to sleep in it. It is also much healthier for him.
As it is unwise to allow any dog to roam freely outdoors, you should plan on taking your dog for walks on a regular basis. This assures him of getting enough exercise, as well as developing a positive relationship with you. The leash, and collar or harness, must be appropriate to his size and age. He needs to be restrained during his walks, without discomfort. As these products are available in a variety of sizes, weights, and materials, be sure to have your pet’s size and age in mind when you purchase them.
Purchasing supplies for your new pet is not difficult, and does not need to be expensive. When you write out your list ahead of time, you can do some comparison shopping for good values. Having all of the supplies at home before your dog arrives is the best way to ensure his comfort, health, and happiness right from the start.
Credit photo: Skyler Ewin