1. Crate

A crate is an essential item that will not only keep your puppy safe but also makes him feel safe. Compare the crate to having a crib for your new baby. You wouldn’t bring your new baby home and just put him on the floor and give him free range of your house. The crate gives boundaries to the puppy and gives you some control over his behavior. A puppy needs boundaries in order to feel secure, just like a child would. The crate aids in house training, behavioral training, and is a place to keep him safe when he’s not being monitored. The crate is also a safe way for your puppy to travel.

2. Toys

Picking out new toys for the new puppy is fun. Choose a variety of sizes and types—ones that he can’t chew up, fluffy ones to snuggle with, and noisy ones to play with. A comforting toy that has a heartbeat and gives off heat is a great way to help transition a new puppy to your home.

3. Harness and 6 ft Leash

You want to keep your puppy safe and secure at all times. Choose a well fitted harness that the puppy can wear for long periods of time, in comfort. Keep the puppy on leash unless he is in a fenced yard. I do not recommend retractable leashes. As an ER vet I have seen many tragic accidents from these types of leashes. A collar is also good to have, however not necessary for a puppy. If you do place a collar on your puppy be sure to take it off when he is alone or in the crate because it can be a strangulation hazard.

4. A High Quality, Real Food Diet

I recommend selecting a diet that is either commercial raw, dehydrated, or fresh. I do not recommend raising your puppy on a highly processed, dry kibble.

5. Consistency

This is absolutely necessary to train and acclimate your new puppy to your home and schedule. Be consistent with walking, training, feeding, and play time. This gives your puppy structure and helps him to develop into a well balanced, well behaved dog.

6. Patience

A new puppy is a lot of work and is time consuming. However, if you put the time in at the beginning, you will raise an amazing dog, and it will be a more enjoyable experience.

7. A Tribe

Your puppy will need a tribe of professionals for his life journey. Your tribe should include a veterinarian (both traditional and holistic), trainer, groomer, pet-sitter, and nutritionist. Do your research and get recommendations for pet professionals in your area.

8. Seat Belt

If your pup is not in a crate while traveling in the car, a seat belt is necessary to keep him safe.

9. Grooming Supplies

These include a breed-appropriate brush, puppy shampoo, and nail clippers. Your puppy can be bathed as much as needed as long as you use a good quality, gentle shampoo.

10. Dog Bedding

Choose some comfy dog beds for around the house, and a nice crate pad. It is also helpful to have blankets and towels dedicated to puppy use.