Is Santa bringing someone in your household a NEW PUPPY this Christmas? If so, here are some things that will make your life easier and help your newest family member adjust more quickly:

1) Use a crate: There are a variety of crates out there and there is one thing that is key no matter which one you go with: the size. We like the wire crates with the divider in it so that you can increase the amount of space your puppy has as they grow. A crate should be big enough so that your dog can spin around and readjust their position, but not too big that they have a ton of room to roam around. It should be just the right size to provide a “den-like” experience for your dog.
Crates are essential for potty training, down time, and preventing your puppy from getting into mischief when they cannot be supervised. Puppy play pens are also a great option for times you are unable to supervise!

2) Have a variety of toys on hand: There are 2 categories of toys that we recommend: pacifier toys and interactive toys.
Pacifier toys are great to keep your puppy busy when you cannot be playing with them, and to help them along in their teething. These include well-made toys like the Kong Puppy Toy, puppy teething rings, and Nylabones for puppies, not to mention treat puzzle toys where your puppy is kept busy for a while while they figure out how to get the food out!
Interactive toys are toys that you use when you can physically be involved in play time. These include tug toys, rope toys, stuffed animal toys and balls. ***Always supervise your puppy when they have any toy to avoid choking hazards!***

3) Give your puppy good quality food and treats: We support feeding raw where you can, but we also realize that it can be expensive and therefore not an option for every family. Make sure to do your research on the best bang for your buck when choosing a puppy food or treats. We highly recommend using the resource for just this purpose!

4) Use an appropriate collar and leash: This one is simple and straight forward. Using a well-made and collar or harness are great to start your puppy on walking. As for the leash, steer clear of extendable leashes (they will actually train your puppy to pull) and grab yourself a well-made 4-6 foot leash. Slip leads are also a great option as they offer a 2-in-1 collar and leash combination.

5) Get a good pet bed: Stay away from pet beds with stuffing in them as this can lead to blockages and other ailments caused by your puppy chewing and ingesting the stuffing. We highly recommend elevated pet beds because they keep your puppy cool by allowing for air circulation, are easy to clean and your puppy is a lot less likely to chew it!

If you are getting a puppy this Christmas, start off right and avoid problems later!  Contact us today so that we can help you along in the first few months of bringing your new family member home. If someone you know is getting a puppy, share this blog post with them so that they can have the most success possible and avoid some of the frustrations of being new puppy owners!

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