ULTIMATE Puppy Checklist: 21 Things You’ll Need

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First of all congratulations on bringing home your new puppy! I know the lead-up to getting a puppy can be both very nerve-wracking and exciting at the same time. 

But DON’T WORRY you will do great, and we are here to help you get everything you need before you bring your new family member home.

We spent hours brainstorming to create an ultimate puppy checklist of all the essentials based on our experience as dog owners.

Without further adieu, here are all the tips and items we could think of that will attempt to predict most of your needs as a puppy owner.

NOTE: If you are buying something that has sizes make sure you measure your pup to ensure you get the right size.

Our Puppy Checklist Of Essential Puppy Supplies:

1. Dog Crate (Somewhere For Them To Feel Safe)

Aspen Pet Traditional Kennel, 28", for Dogs 20-30 Lbs, Model Number: 41300
  • TRAVEL CARRIER: This kennel features sturdy plastic construction, 360-degree ventilation & a squeeze latch door for easy loading & unloading. It's 28 inches long & ideal for pets 20-30 lbs.
  • SECURE & STRESS FREE: This carrier offers simple, no-tool construction for easy assembly & features a handle on top for carrying. A raised interior & secure tie-down holes provide a safe & comfortable travel experience.
  • KENNELS & HOUSES: Crate & kennel training is vital for dog safety & comfort. We provide traditional travel carriers, wire training & exercise kennels, play pens, barn-style dog houses & more. 28 inch Interior Dimensions - 24.25 L x 18.25 W x 19.5 H inches. Dimensions - 28 L x 20 W x 20.5 H inches

Last update on 2020-09-26 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

I know some of you may think dog crates aren’t your first choice, but for a new puppy, it is a MUST.

Dog crates will provide your puppy with many things, a safe space (both mentally and physically), a training tool and a way to protect the destruction of everything in your house. 

Puppies go from being surrounded by doggy siblings to their new situation with you and whoever may be in your family. For a puppy, a new environment will cause anxiety and rooms full of people or loud noises can further that anxiety.

So whenever your dog is feeling overwhelmed they can fall back to their isolated dog crate, and regain their peace of mind.

Our pick for a great puppy dog crate is the Aspen Pet Traditional Kennel. It has 3 options but I thought the 28 inch was comfortable for a medium-sized puppy and there is plenty of room to grow into it.

You can comfortably fit a reusable pee pad in there and also a waterproof dog blanket to keep your dog nice and toasty.

2. SmartPetLove’s Snuggle Puppy

SmartPetLove Snuggle Puppy Behavioral Aid Toy, Biscuit
  • The original Snuggle Puppy, celebrating 22 years of comforting pets
  • Helps with crate training by reducing negative behaviors such as whining and barking, which also helps YOU sleep at night
  • Helps pets transition to their new home and reduces stress caused by fireworks and thunderstorms

Last update on 2020-09-26 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

After you get that crate your dog is going to need something to keep them company! The Snuggle Puppy can do just that. Although it is more of a comfort toy than a chew toy it will reduce your dog’s anxiety and in turn reduce whining and barking while they are in their crate.

It is a plush toy with a velcro pouch on the bottom side that you can open up and place the included mechanical heart in. The mechanical heart will beat for 8 hours or 24 hours and will make your puppy feel like there is another puppy sleeping beside them. 

If you choose the 24-hour option the mechanical heart will last for 2 weeks and after that, you will just replace the batteries.

The best part is after being slobbered and slept on for several days you can machine wash it! Just remember to remove the mechanical heart before you do.

3. Chew Toys

These toys don’t require much explanation but here are a couple of choices for you to think about. The first is the puppy chew ring with a chicken flavor. When I introduced this to my puppy they loved it, but you need to keep an eye on them and throw the ring away when it gets too small.

The second is this durable dog toy variety pack that gives your puppy plenty of choices when playtime comes. There are several rope toys, a plush toy, and some more balls for your puppy to chase around (once they know how of course).

For some other teething toys we think are great checkout our teething toys for puppies list.

4. No Chew Spray

Bodhi Dog New Bitter 2 in 1 No Chew & Hot Spot Spray | All Natural Anti-Chew Remedy | Safe for Skin, Wounds, Anything Else | Made in USA | 8oz
  • DETER CHEWING & BITING OF SKIN IRRITATIONS: Our all-natural Bitter 2 in 1 No Chew & Hot Spot Spray is a safe and humane alternative to help train your furry friend from chewing and biting on wounds, skin, and anything everything around them! The natural bitters added in our formula do not scare or harm your pet, it just tastes awful to any surface applied on. Chewing is a hard habit to break, so allow days or up to weeks depending on your pet’s training capabilities!
  • SAFE TO USE INDOORS AND OUTDOORS: Our non-staining, cruelty-free anti-chew spray is safe to use on things you want your pets to stop chewing on both indoor and outdoor. It can be safely be sprayed on plants, fabrics, tables, blinds, baseboards, power cords, shoes, furniture, wires, woodwork, rugs, and many other things you don't want your furry friend to chew on! 
  • EFFECTIVE AND SAFE: Our Bitter 2 in 1 No Chew & Hot Spot Spray won’t hurt your pet or the things it sprayed on! Please keep in mind, our spray contains natural bitters which can have a strong scent to some people. Make sure to always use it in a well-ventilated area. Use sparingly at first as a precaution to test for adequate ventilation. Our all plant and botanical based chew deterrent spray is inspired by nature and does not contain harsh chemicals or additives.

Last update on 2020-09-26 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

This is absolutely an essential item in your doggy arsenal. This tool specializes in protecting your possessions from a teething puppy.

Sure, there may be other chew sprays out there, but I have actually tried this spray and can tell you that it worked for me! I sprayed it on the corners of my couch which my puppy loved chewing and for the duration of the spray my puppy would avoid it.

For our ultimate guide to puppy proofing, check out this listicle here.

5. Leashes, Collars, And Harnesses

Taking your dog outside will require you to have a leash and either a collar or harness depending on your preference.

A harness can be nice for a puppy because you put less strain on their neck and can avoid injury from rapid pressure on your dog’s trachea!

Usually, a harness is the better choice if your dog is pulling on the leash more during a walk, but if that isn’t a problem you should be okay going with a traditional collar.

We will include a few options for each below, but be sure to measure your puppy so you get the right size.

For the collar, we like the Country Brook Design collar. But make sure you do some measurements before you buy collars and harnesses because you need to get the right size for your pup.

For the harness, we like the Voyager Step-In Air Dog Harness. It is made of all-weather mesh and is super easy to put on.

You will have a much easier time slipping a puppy into this type of harness rather than other harnesses with more complex designs.

As far as leashes are concerned there are a few choices, but you are best off keeping it simple.

A nylon leash will get the job done just fine, but make sure you choose a size of leash that your dog can grow into while still being appropriate for the current size of your puppy.

If you do want to get a leash that is more fashionable then we recommend a leather dog leash.

The ADITYNA leather dog leash is a sturdy, visually appealing option that you should consider. However, if that isn’t to your liking we have a list about the best leather dog leashes.

6. A Blanket For Your Puppy

PetAmi Waterproof Dog Blanket for Medium Dogs, Puppies, Small Cats | Soft Sherpa Fleece Pet Blanket Throw for Sofa, Couch | Thick Durable Pet Bed Cover Floor Mat 30 x 40 inches (Grey Grey)
  • FOR SMALL MEDIUM DOGS - This blanket is the right size for small to medium dogs and will fit all cats. Perfect for your pet to lounge around and nap on your sofa; Great for indoor use but also suitable for outdoor use; Measures 30 x 40 inches.
  • 100% WATERPROOF - Protects your furniture from spills, stains, and urine while keeping your pet cozy and comfortable. Internal waterproof lining provides defense and stops liquids from seeping through.
  • WARM AND COMFORTABLE - Equipped with warm Sherpa lining on the other side. The blanket is reversible and made with plush fabric that will keep your pets warm and cozy while they sleep comfortably on your sofa or bed.

Last update on 2020-09-26 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Your puppy is going to need warmth, which is why they need a blanket.

I personally prefer a waterproof dog blanket because if your dog has an accident the blanket will absorb it so your puppy isn’t rolling in puddles of urine until you clean it up.

The waterproof blanket that I used was the PetAmi waterproof dog blanket. It is soft, warm and you can machine wash it for whenever it starts to smell!

There are also several colors for those who need a certain color to fit your environment. 

If you or your dog don’t like that option here is a list of the best waterproof dog blankets to give you some other fantastic options.

7. Stainless Steel Dog Bowl

AmazonBasics Stainless Steel Pet Dog Water And Food Bowl, Set of 2 (11 x 3 Inches)
  • Set of 2 stainless-steel food bowls for puppies, dogs, cats, or kittens
  • Holds up to 38 ounces each; perfect for dry kibble, wet food, treats, or water
  • Rust resistant; offers a healthy alternative to plastic; doesn’t hold odors

Last update on 2020-09-26 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Your dog is going to need something to eat and drink out of so why get anything other than quality stainless steel bowls. 

We recommend the AmazonBasics stainless steel dog bowl that is rust-resistant, a good size and has a non-skid base so your dog can’t push it around the house.

Also, whenever the bowl gets too dirty you can throw this into the dishwasher and easily clean it without getting your hands dirty!

Lastly, this bowl comes in either a two pack or a single pack. So be sure you select the amount you prefer.

8. Name Tag

Dr. Fremont's Pet ID Tag Custom for Dog Cat Personalized | Many Shapes and Colors to Choose from | Made in USA | Strong Anodized Aluminum
  • High Quality, Low Price!
  • Includes Split Ring for Attaching to Collar!
  • Front and Back Personalization Available!

Last update on 2020-09-26 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Name tags are essential, hopefully, you won’t need them but they are good to have. You can create a custom name tag that includes your dog’s name and your address or phone number. 

This specific name tag can have any custom information you need on the name tag placed on there just in case your dog ever gets lost and needs help.

9. Stain And Odor Remover

Rocco & Roxie Supply Professional Strength Stain and Odor Eliminator, Enzyme-Powered Pet Odor and Stain Remover for Dogs and Cat Urine, Spot Carpet Cleaner for Small Animal, 32 oz.
  • ELIMINATES STAINS, ODORS AND RESIDUE If it’s gross, it’s gone. Not just the stain, but the stink. From stinky yellow pet urine and feces to vomit and other organic spills, our professional strength formula tackles them all.
  • ENZYME ACTIVATED The key is getting to the problem deep-down. This spray contains natural enzymatic bacteria that are activated on contact with odors and stains, feeding on ammonia crystals and organic matter until they are completely eliminated.
  • CERTIFIED GENTLE AND SAFE Chlorine free and color safe. Safe to use around pets and children. No hazardous propellants, no residue left behind. So gentle it’s been Certified Safe for all carpets, earning the Seal of Approval by the trusted Carpet and Rug Institute (CRI)

Last update on 2020-09-26 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Accidents are going to happen when you get a puppy, and stain and odor remover for pets is here to do the best work for the job. It is especially important when cleaning carpets because you don’t want that smell to settle into your carpet. 

Our recommendation is the Rocco & Roxie Professional Strength Cleaner. It can be used on all surfaces and has special enzymatic bacteria that will eliminate messes to completion.

It is also certified gentle and safe to use in households with both pets and children.

If you don’t like this option, check out our list of the best pet stain and odor removers!

10. Puppy Food

Of course, now you will need some puppy food so you can get to feed your new dog right away!

We’ll give you a few options to try so you can sample different foods with your puppy and see what they like the most.

  1. Hill’s Science Dry Puppy Food
  2. Iams Proactive Health Puppy Food
  3. Purina Pro Plan Puppy Food

11. Puppy Shampoo

You need to make sure your puppy stays nice and clean, so here are two choices out of many that could be a good choice for puppy shampoo. 

One of these options is Burt’s Bees which is made with high-quality ingredients and is made safe by being ph balanced and removing several harmful ingredients. 

There are NO parabens, phthalates, petroleum, SLS or synthetic fragrances. This will clean and soothe your dog’s skin and coat in a very safe way using natural ingredients. 

A second option for puppy shampoo is Pet Pleasant Natural Dog Shampoo. It is a much different smell then the Burt’s Bees because of its lavender essential oil.

Pet Pleasant has said this shampoo is made to help puppies with sensitive skin especially. It also includes oatmeal in its formula and overall it is a hypoallergenic shampoo made to soothe flaky dry skin.

12. Treats

Zuke's Mini Naturals Training Dog Treats Chicken Recipe - 6 Oz. Bag
  • Wholesome, tender mini bites for all your adventures in training
  • Real chicken is the #1 ingredient
  • Less than 3 calories per treat for guilt free rewarding

Last update on 2020-09-26 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

You need positive reinforcement if you want to train your dog anything. Although, you can do it with other things treats are the quick, easy and proven reward to help train dogs.

So which treats should you use to train your puppy? There are a few options out there that are would be great. Primarily, I think you should consider Zuke’s Natural Training Dog Treats.

They don’t have too many calories in them so you can worry less about the risk of obesity due to the number of treats you will give during training. 

You should know these are smaller treats, but that is what makes them ideal for training. They also taste good and are made with quality ingredients.

13. Dog Comb

Hertzko Self Cleaning Slicker Brush – Gently Removes Loose Undercoat, Mats and Tangled Hair – Your Dog or Cat Will Love Being Brushed with The Grooming Brush
  • ★ THE PERFECT BRUSH TO GET ALL NASTY MATS OUT OF YOUR PET’S FUR – Hertzko’s Slicker Brush gently removes Loose Hair, and eliminates Tangles, Knots, Dander and trapped Dirt. WORKS GREAT ON DOGS AND CATS WITH ALL SIZES AND HAIR TYPES!
  • ★ GET RID OF MATS WITHOUT HURTING HER - The bristles are FINE bent wires designed to penetrate DEEP into the coat and is really able to groom the undercoat well without scratching your pet's skin!
  • ★ EASY TO CLEAN – When you’re done brushing your pet, Simply click the button and the bristles retract back into the brush, Making is SUPER SIMPLE to remove all the hair from the brush, So it’s ready for the next time use.

Last update on 2020-09-26 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

We are all quite aware of how much dogs can shed. Unless you own a hypoallergenic breed, you will have to deal with a lot of hair on your floors, rugs, and even your furniture (if you allow it)!

But let me be clear if you have a hypoallergenic breed you should still brush them. This way any little amounts of hair, dander or anything else hiding in there can be ridden from their coat.

I think that the Hertzko Self Cleaning Slicker Brush is a great way to clean your puppy’s coat. It’s a large brush, but your puppy will definitely grow into it.

It also has the features for efficient removal of bad things in your dog’s hair. Some of those features are the fine bent wires, the easy cleaning button, and the comfortable, anti-slip handle.

14. Regular Towels And Paper Towels

You should have at least a couple extra towels on hand to dry your dog off after their baths.

With two towels you can successfully dry them off and then warm them up before you let them run off and get back to playing or sleeping.

You should have paper towels because there will be LOTS of accidents. Technically, you could use towels to clean up those messes.

However, you will have much more peace of mind and you can avoid deep cleaning reusable towels by using paper towels.

15. Poop Bags

Sale
Earth Rated Dog Poop Bags, 270 Extra Thick and Strong Poop Bags for Dogs, Guaranteed Leak-Proof, Lavender-Scented, 18 Rolls, 15 Doggy Bags Per Roll, Each Dog Poop Bag Measures 9 x 13 Inches
  • Bag poop better: Our 23x33 cm bags have a 100 percent leak-proof guarantee to keep hands safe
  • What's in the box: 270 awesome dog poo bags on 18 refill rolls of 15 bags, and fit our dispenser too
  • Poop doesn't smell like roses: Our odor blocking lavender-scent locks in that smell for good

Last update on 2020-09-26 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Please, don’t be the person that leaves a surprise for someone else to walk through in the park. Take a couple of minutes to use a poop bag to bag it and throw it away at a nearby trash can.

We like the Earth Rated Dog Poop Bags because they are leak-proof and have an odor-blocking lavender scent to avoid that nasty smell wafting into your smell as you transport it to the trash.

16. Dog Bed

JOYELF Memory Foam Dog Bed Small Orthopedic Dog Bed & Sofa with Removable Washable Cover and Squeaker Toy as Gift
  • HIGH-QUALITY MATERIALS: ①Solid Memory Foam base for perfectly to your pet's body for maximum comfort;②Memory Foam using flame retardant material;③The Bottom Material of the dog bed comes with built-in nonslip rubber backing④Inner cover perfect for senior dog with occasional accident;⑤The fabric offers unmatched warmth and comfort;⑥The bolster is big and fluffy which is relax breathable and good resilience.
  • BETTER DESIGN:①The base high-density memory foam can provide the ultimate sleep experience with superior overall comfort and to last;②The bottom is lined with rubber particles to avoid the bed from ever sliding around;③Soft & Full comfy cotton-padded Bolsters (couch arms) surround a whole circle can protect your pet's neck.④The hidden zipper of this orthopedic dog bed makes the product look better;⑤Internal liner to protect memory foam from liquids.
  • EASY To MAINTAIN:①Removable cover is machine washable,simply remove the cover, zip closed ②Easy to find & Remove hair;③Do not immerse in water for long time& tumble dry ,Line dry better

Last update on 2020-09-26 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Your puppy should have a place where they can lay down and relax that’s still near people. A dog crate is used for isolation while the dog bed should be used for a relaxing place where your dog can spend their time at any time!

I personally prefer bolstered beds for my dogs because they have a place to rest their head. I think of it kind of like a pillow for dogs, but it’s built into the bed.

So I recommend the JOYELF Memory Foam Dog Bed because it has bolsters all around it and it has memory foam in the base so your dog can sleep with maximum comfort.

This bed also has a machine washable cover that you can easily slip off and place in the machine once it gets too smelly.

17. Puppy Pee Pads

AmazonBasics Dog and Puppy Pee, Potty Training Pads, Heavy Duty X-Large (28 x 34) - Pack of 25
  • Includes 25, Heavy Duty, X-Large Size Pads
  • Super-absorbent core turns liquid to gel upon contact
  • Leakproof design with plastic lining for ultimate floor protection

Last update on 2020-09-26 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

You may not need this but it can be a very useful tool for many things. I put this at the bottom of my puppy’s crate just in case they had an accident. 

But you could also use puppy pee pads as a mat for your dog bowls to catch water and food spillage.

In addition to, spot training, use on car seats during car rides with your puppy, and as an outdoor mat to clean dirt off your puppies paws before they come inside.

We think that the AmazonBasics Heavy-Duty Puppy Training Pads are a great choice. They are leak-proof, have a super absorbent core, and include a quick-dry surface so your dog doesn’t step into their own urine after.

For more dog pee pad options, check out our list.

18. Baby Gate

Sale
Regalo Easy Fit Plastic Adjustable Extra Wide Baby Gate
  • EXTRA WIDE: Expands to stairways and openings between 28-42 inches wide. Stands 23 inches tall
  • ADJUSTABLE: Perfect for doorway, hallway and bottom of stair use. Gate can quickly be removed out of the opening for easy storage. Patented Easy Fit system, quick and easy
  • DURABLE AND CONVENIENT: The all steel design locking system is durable and convenient

Last update on 2020-09-26 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

It is important to have rooms your dog cannot go in to. However, when you have a puppy chasing you around a baby gate can help you block off the room without managing with a door.

We like the Regalo Easy Fit Baby Gate, it is extra-wide and very durable as well. The design is all steel and very secure, while also being easy to setup.

19. Playpen

Sale
MidWest Homes for Pets Folding Metal Exercise Pen / Pet Playpen
  • Secure double latch step through door access, exercise pen / pet Playpen folds flat for convenient storage
  • Includes 8 ground anchors for outdoor use, 8 corner stabIilizers and 4 thumb snaps for easy assembly
  • Durable black E coat finish, provides long lasting protection, features secure double latch door

Last update on 2020-09-26 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

If you have an open backyard or just want to make sure your puppy doesn’t wander off during outside playtime, you should consider a playpen.

You can use a playpen to section off an amount of space in your back yard for your dog to play. It requires a little time to set up but once you do you can ease your mind.

We think that the Midwest Homes For Pets Exercise Pen is a great choice with many sizing options.

It is also sturdy, secure and comes with several anchors so you can lock the playpen into the ground and stop your puppy from nudging it all around.

20. Pooper Scooper

Sale
Nature's Miracle Non-Stick Advanced Jaw Scoop For Pet Waste Pick Up, Jumbo
  • Lightweight and easy to use. Picks up from all Surfaces - Grass, gravel or concrete
  • Picks up from all surfaces
  • Antimicrobial product protection

Last update on 2020-09-26 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Keeping your backyard clean is very important. If you don’t you are going to have to step very carefully outside and your puppy won’t share that caution.

They will most likely go trampling through their own poop and it will get on their paws and they will track it inside.

But with a pooper scooper, you can easily pick up any messes in your back yard. We like Nature’s Miracle Advanced Jaw Scoop because of its easy and lightweight design.

For more options, check out our best pooper scooper list.

21. Veterinarian

I can’t recommend any Veterinarians because you will have to find one in your local area that is rated well and can fit your needs.

I will, however, say that Yelp can be great for finding well-reviewed Vets and you can get their phone number from Yelp for more information.

You should make a list of questions you want to ask them and also make a list of the best Veterinarians in your area.

Usually after asking each Veterinarian those questions you can discern which will be the best for your puppy.

Veterinarians are the best source to get information, so before you go make sure you prepare any additional questions about your new puppy.

If you ask your vet, they might be able to provide you with 24 Hour Veterinarian recommendations in your city.

For any Heartworm or Flea & Tick Medicine, you can ask your Vet for recommendations if they don’t already have it prepared for your puppy.

22. Boarding

Dog boarding is useful for when you have to go out of town and you can’t or don’t want to get a pet sitter for your own home.

You NEED to know that you should NOT board your puppy until they have at least completed all their puppy shots.

Which is at about 16 weeks so you have a while before can board your dog. But it’s good to know this beforehand so when the time comes you already have a good dog boarding place in mind.

If you are going out of town before your dog is done with their puppy shots, finding a friend or family member that can pet sit your dog might be a good option.

Final Thoughts

Congratulations on your new puppy! There are many other things not on this puppy checklist that you will need along the way but this list is just to help get you started.

If you still haven’t found a good name for your dog check out one of our MANY dog name lists.

Some of them are food-related dog names, western dog names, golden retriever dog names and many more that can be found under Dog Trivia.

Enjoy the experience of being a dog owner, they grow up so fast!

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