Young couple playing with new puppy

If you’re thinking about getting a puppy or already have a plan in place to bring home a new addition, there are a few things you should have to make things infinitely easier. Here is a comprehensive list to help you prepare for your new furry family member.

  1. Leash and Collar/Harness
Small dog wearing harness

You’re going to want to take that little bundle of energy on walks – so make sure you have a leash and collar or harness. For smaller puppies, a harness may work better as a collar can slip off the little guys. Walks are essential for exercise, socialization, and training. (They are excellent for us humans as well.) A good leash and collar or harness ensure that your puppy stays safe and secure while exploring the world. Check out our selection of leashes.

  1. Identification Tags

Inevitably, your puppy is going to get loose from the leash or slip out a door – they just can’t help themselves. Be sure you have identification tags for your puppy so if you can’t find them right away, someone can contact you when they do. Identification tags provide peace of mind and increase the chances of a happy reunion if your puppy ever gets lost. Ask your vet about microchipping them as well.

  1. Food and Water Bowls
Small dog at elevated feeder

Everybody must eat – including your puppy. Make sure you have food and water bowls that are an appropriate size for your newest family member. Check out the Clearly Loved Pets modern feeders. They have easy to wash glass bowls and are elevated to aid with proper posture while eating and drinking. Ensuring your puppy has access to fresh water and a clean bowl for food is vital for their health and well-being.

  1. Containment
Small dog in clear playpen

Puppies love to explore, chew, and get into things. Finding a way to contain them, so they have some room to explore but can’t get into mischief, is essential. The Clearly Loved Pets Lucidium Pen is perfect for this. It’s transparent, so your puppy can see what’s happening, and you can keep an eye on them. These pens come in various sizes, making them ideal for puppies and small to medium breeds weighing up to 40 lbs.

  1. Dog Bed

Of course, you want to provide your dog with some comfort, and that’s why you’ll want to pick up a dog bed. Dog beds come in an almost infinite variety of different shapes and sizes, so do some research to find one that will work for your puppy. A good bed supports your puppy’s growing joints and muscles and provides a cozy spot for them to rest and sleep. Check out this excellent guide to dog beds from WebMD. We recommend the Clearly Loved Pets teepees for the ultimate cozy hide-away. It has a 3 inch thick memory foam bed with plush faux fur cover.

Dog in teepee style dog bed
  1. Food and Treats
Puppy getting a hand fed treat

Yes, food and treats are a must. Seek out high-quality food and treats that will help your puppy become a healthy dog. Nutritional needs are different for puppies than for adult dogs, so make sure you choose a food specifically formulated for puppies. Treats are essential for training and rewarding good behavior. If you have questions, your veterinarian should be able to make some recommendations.

  1. Grooming Supplies
Dog covered by towel after a bath

All dogs will need to be groomed. While you may take your dog to a professional groomer for some pampering, it’s always good to have some basic grooming supplies at home. Regular grooming keeps your puppy’s coat healthy, reduces shedding, and helps you spot any potential health issues early. Essential grooming supplies include a brush, nail clippers, and dog-friendly shampoo. Hang on to those old towels too – they come in handy for bathing or in the car after a dog park visit!

  1. Poop Bags

Please pick up after your pooch! Invest in a supply of poop bags, so you’re never caught short. Responsible pet ownership includes cleaning up after your puppy, which keeps public spaces clean and helps prevent the spread of disease. Dog waste contains nitrogen and phosphorus, which can deplete oxygen levels that fish and other water-based life need to survive. It can also promote the growth of algae and aquatic plants, which can die and rot, using up more oxygen. Pick it up!

  1. Toys & Chews
Frenchy puppy with chewy bone

Puppies love to play and they love to chew - especially puppies with their sharp little teeth. Once you’ve figured out what type of play (fetching, tugging, etc.) that your puppy loves, grab some toys to make it fun! Toys are crucial for your puppy’s mental and physical development. They provide exercise, mental stimulation, and help prevent destructive behavior by keeping your puppy entertained. Better they chew up the $10 dog toy than your $200 shoes.

  1. Patience

Last, but definitely not least, make sure you have plenty of patience. Puppies need to learn, and you’re their teacher. They’ll make plenty of mistakes, so have patience throughout the learning process. Training a puppy takes time and consistency, but the effort you put in now will pay off with a well-behaved and happy adult dog. Your reward is endless, unconditional love. Can’t beat that.

woman snuggling dog on sofa


Are you ready to add a puppy to your home? Then jump in with both feet and find the one that will make your home complete! (Check out our rescue locator!) Make sure you pick up these must-haves before your new furry family member comes to join you. These items will help ensure that you and your home are all ready for the joys of puppy parenting. With the right preparation, you can make your puppy’s transition to their new home smooth and enjoyable for both of you.

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