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Home > Dogs > 26 Essential Dog Supplies For New Dog Owners: Vet Approved Guide

26 Essential Dog Supplies For New Dog Owners: Vet Approved Guide

Happy couple with their puppy buying dog toys in pet shop

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Dr. Paola Cuevas

Veterinarian, MVZ

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Adding a new dog to your household is an exciting time. However, it also means buying essential supplies that your new canine pal will need. If you’re thinking of getting a pup, or maybe you already have, our compiled list of essential dog supplies will help ensure you have everything you need to get your new doggo a healthy start in life. Let’s take a look.


26 Essential Dog Supplies to Get You Started

1. Food

Of course, your new pal will need food, and with so many options available on the market, choosing a food might leave you scratching your head. A rule of thumb is to choose a food that is complete and balanced, contains no fillers or preservatives, and contains no BHA or BHT. You can also check with a veterinarian to help you determine what food is best. After all, the start to a healthy life for your dog is feeding the right food.

2. Food and Water Bowls

Frisco Stainless Steel Bowl

Stainless steel bowls are excellent options for food and water bowls because they are easy to clean, don’t hold bacteria, and are dishwasher safe. We also recommend getting bowls with non-slip grippers on the bottom so that the bowls don’t slide around when your pup eats or drinks.

3. Collar

Frisco Monochromatic Dog Collar

Dog Collars come in a variety of sizes and colors, but how do you pick the right one? For starters, you’ll need to measure your dog’s neck for a proper fit. Do this by measuring around the base of your dog’s neck. Make sure you can fit two fingers in between the measuring tape and your dog’s neck to ensure a comfortable fit. You also may need to add 2–3 inches for complete comfort.

4. Leash

PetSafe Cotton Dog Training Lead

A training leash works well for dogs that are quick and like to chase squirrels or whatever else comes into their field of vision. Sometimes, dogs can dart off before you have the chance to contain them, and a training leash will allow you to have the leash wrapped around your wrist. That way, your dog can’t get away from you before you have the chance to pull them back.

5.  Harness

Best Pet Supplies Voyager Padded Fleece Dog Harness

A harness will be much more comfortable for your dog when walking or any other activity where your dog needs to be on a leash. It’s safer than attaching a leash to a collar, and your pup will be easier to control with a harness. Harnesses are good once the dogs have learned not to pull, collars help with discouraging them from pulling.

6. Crate

Frisco Fold & Carry Single Door Collapsible Wire Dog Crate

Crates come in handy when you need to keep your dog safe or for bedtime. Crates also come in handy for training purposes. Crates can provide a safe place for your dog to relax, be comfortable, and adjust to the new surroundings. However, it’s important to never leave them in a crate all day.

7. Comfy Bed

FurHaven Ultra Plush Luxe Lounger Orthopedic Cat & Dog Bed w/Removable Cover

Your new fur baby will need something to sleep on. Dog beds come in all sorts of shapes and sizes, so picking one will be determined by the size of your pooch. If you rescued a senior or a dog with special needs, orthopedic beds provide the utmost comfort, and they usually are machine washable.

8. An Airtight Container for Food

IRIS Airtight Pet Food Storage Container

An airtight food container will help keep your new pal’s food fresh, and it will keep pests, insects, and moisture out of the food. When shopping for a container, look for one that is BPA-free. BPA stands for bisphenol-A, which is an industrial chemical that could be hazardous to dogs. If you want to avoid plastic altogether, you can use a stainless steel container.

9. Dog Gate

 Cardinal Gates Duragate Dog Gate

If you want to close off a certain area of your home to keep your new pup out, dog gates can come in handy. Sometimes, you may want to confine your dog away from certain situations, such as a friend’s dog coming over for a visit or the pest control guy coming to do a spray. Gates will keep your dog safe from any situation where you need to keep them separated.

10. Toothbrush and Toothpaste

Virbac C.E.T. Dog & Cat Toothbrush

Dental hygiene is extremely important for your dog’s overall health and often gets overlooked. Practicing good dental hygiene will help prevent dental issues, such as bad breath, broken teeth, and periodontal disease. You don’t need to brush your dog’s teeth every single day but do it as often as possible.

Ensure you buy toothpaste specifically made for dogs, and never use human toothpaste, as the ingredients could be toxic to your dog. Enzymatic toothpaste works well to remove plaque and tartar, and buying a dog toothbrush or finger brush helps get into hard-to-reach places. You can also use other methods, such as dental wipes or dental treats.

11. Ear Cleaner

Virbac Epi-Otic Advanced Ear Cleaner for Dogs & Cats

Your dog’s ears can get dirty, especially if you have a breed with ears that constantly stand up, such as a Boston Terrier. Using an ear cleaner will keep your doggo’s ears healthy, but don’t use it too often. Some dogs need more frequent ear cleanings than others, and you can always check with your veterinarian for advice on how often to clean them.

12. Dog Brush

Hartz Groomer's Best Combo Dog Brush

Depending on your dog’s coat, you need to brush them either frequently or infrequently. Some dogs will need their coat brushed at least once a week to keep shedding down and remove dead hair. After living with your new pet for a while, you will learn how often your particular pal will need brushing.

13. Nail Clippers

Zen Clipper Precise Adjustable Dog Nail Clipper

Ah, the dreaded clipping of the nails. Some dogs don’t care for this, but some don’t mind it. Nonetheless, it needs to be done. Investing in good quality nail clippers will help keep this task short. You never want to let your dog’s nails get too long because it could cause problems, such as trouble walking, or they could break when running.

Some dogs’ nails grow faster than others, but on average, this will need to be done every 3–4 weeks. If you’re not comfortable doing it yourself, you can always have your veterinarian do it for you.

14. Shampoo

Hepper Colloidal Oatmeal Pet Shampoo (Aloe and Cucumber Scent)

Every dog will need a bath at some point, and it’s wise to have shampoo on hand when your dog decides to roll around in mud or something stinky. Try and buy soap-free shampoo with conditioner for a shiny and healthy coat. If your dog has sensitive skin, there are plenty of shampoos on the market to choose from.

At Pet Keen, we’ve admired Hepper for many years, and decided to take a controlling ownership interest so that we could benefit from the outstanding designs of this cool cat company!

15. Treats

dog treat_James Lacy_Unsplash
Image Credit: James Lacy, Unsplash

Dogs love treats, and you’ll definitely want them on hand. Treats come in handy for training purposes, too. When shopping for treats, ensure they are healthy and contain no rawhide. Rawhides can present choking hazards or cause intestinal blockage because dogs can’t digest them very well.

16. Tug Toys

Playing tug-of-war with your dog provides an excellent bonding time for the two of you, and dogs love this game. Tug toys offer a good form of exercise for your pooch, as it works their muscles and provides mental stimulation at the same time.

17. Games and Puzzles

Nina Ottosson by Outward Hound Smart Composite Puzzle Game Dog Toy

Speaking of mental stimulation, games and puzzles offer exercises for your pup’s brain and motor skills. These types of games can help fight boredom, as well as stress and anxiety. Interactive toys are wonderful for pups that like having a job to do, such as a Border Collie.

18. Poop Bags

PET N PET Compostable Dog Poop Bags

Having dogs means picking up after them, and that includes picking up their poop. Poop bags should always be in your arsenal of dog supplies, especially when out for a walk with your pooch. No one likes to step in dog poop, so as a dog owner, it’s essential to do your part and pick it up.

19. Poop Bag Holder

Tuff Mutt Leash Attachment Poop Bag Holder

To make the job of picking up poop easier, it’s a good idea to have a poop bag holder, preferably one that attaches to the leash. That way, you don’t have to hold on to the bags while walking, and they are conveniently there when you need them.

20. Pooper Scooper

Frisco Spring Action Foldable Dog Pooper Scooper

Have you had enough of the poop products yet? Unfortunately, there’s more. Having a pooper scooper will make life so much easier when you need to clean up dog waste in your yard. When it’s easy to do, you’ll be more likely to actually do it and keep your yard free from feces.

21. ID Tags

GoTags Personalized ID Tag

ID Tags are one of the most important purchases you can make for your dog. Having your dog’s name, your phone number, and address on the tag will be a lifesaver if your dog gets out or gets lost.

22. Microchip

veterinarian microchipping beagle dog with syringe
Image Credit: LightField Studios, Shutterstock

A microchip is inserted into your dog’s skin, and the chip will have a unique number for identification purposes. One in three dogs get loose, and if your dog doesn’t have a collar on with all your info on it, you may never find your pup again.

If your dog is microchipped, the person that finds your dog can take him to a vet and have him scanned so that they can contact you. It doesn’t hurt your dog to have it inserted, and your dog won’t realize it’s there.

23. First Aid Supplies

Pet Evac Pak First Dog & Cat First Aid Kit

Dogs can sometimes hurt themselves playing or if involved in any activity, and having a first aid kit on hand will prove beneficial at some point. That way, if your dog gets hurt, you can administer some sort of treatment before making a trip to the vet.

24. Enzymatic Carpet Cleaner

Hepper spray square

Accidents happen, especially with puppies. If you have carpet, having an enzymatic carpet cleaner works wonders for cleaning urine, feces, blood, or vomit. We recommend enzymatic cleaners because enzymes will break down the stain and odors instead of just covering them up. They also discourage your dog from relieving themself in the same area.

25. Establish Your Vet

Husky dog lying on vet table with doctor and owner near by
Image Credit: Pressmaster, Shutterstock

Even though this is at the bottom of our list, it’s probably the most important. Your dog will need to have a vet for yearly check-ups or any injuries that may occur. You can find a vet by asking for recommendations from family or friends or even word of mouth. When you find a potential vet, don’t be afraid to ask many questions, such as their hours, what services they offer, and how they handle emergencies.

26. Pet Insurance

Of course, having pet insurance is optional and may not fit into everyone’s budget, but it is something to consider if you can afford it. Pet insurance can help with costly procedures and tests, such as X-rays, scans, blood work, etc. Most plans do not cover preventative care, such as wellness exams and dental cleanings, but some offer plans for those types of services for an extra added-on monthly fee.

If you’re considering health insurance for your new pet, you may want to take a closer look at Lemonade. You may like the customizable insurance plans and responsive customer service.

divider-paw Conclusion

Now that you know what type of supplies to have on hand, you can start enjoying your new bundle of four-legged joy. Establishing a vet is really the first task you should accomplish because a veterinarian can help you determine what type of food to feed. Also, your vet will get your pup off to a healthy start with vaccines, heartworm, flea, and tick medications.

Owning a dog has its fair share of responsibilities, but the rewards far outweigh the obligations. Dogs are loyal creatures that want to please you, and you can return the favor by supplying your dog with every essential item they need.


Featured Image Credit: hedgehog94, Shutterstock

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