Essentials for puppy owners

Henlo, its me again! After my last article on puppyhood blues, I’m here with another article on what are some of the stuff you should get prior to the arrival of your pup!


MAIN FOOD FOR YOUR PUPPY

Information nugget

  • You definitely need to get food for your puppy – but with all the choices out there, what exactly should you be feeding?
  • Most pet shops have partnerships with certain pet food brands where they get sponsored free kibbles to feed their puppies. Since most peeps who buy from pet shops are first-time owners, the pet shop will advise the owners to continue feeding the same pet food brand (and continue to buy from them), which is a win-win situation for the supplier and pet shop since they get themselves a long-term customer.

My 2 cents:

  • Do your research. Whilst it can be confusing, do your research and try to find a pet food brand that fits your pup’s lifestyle and budget. For smaller breeds, you might want to choose kibbles which are designed to be smaller in size to help with eating. If your pup is mostly indoors and has a low to moderate exercise regime, you can consider feeling brands that cater to low-energy or indoor pets to prevent obesity.

The general rule for food transition (even between kibbles – kibbles), do so slowly over a period of about 7–10 days, mixing an increasing amount of new food with old food each day:

Start with 75% old food mixed with 25% new food for approximately three days. Then mix 50% old with 50% new for approximately three days. (credit @petco.com)

  • Buy online. With the push to go digital, many brands are selling on marketplaces like Shopee, Lazada and there are tons of online pet shops sprouting up every single day. Take advantage of this.
    • Use discount codes, do price comparison,s and get the food delivered to you for free!
    • We like to buy from Shopee because we get coins and there are lots of discount codes from fellow pet ambassadors on Instagram.

ENDING NOTE;

  1. Main food. You might want to buy a smaller packet to make sure your dogs love it before buying more. For us, we are feeding Taste of the wild Puppy Prairie.
  2. Slowly, you can start exploring more food to add to your pup’s bowl. For us, we are feeding Zeal Goat Milk, Kin+Kind Supplements & Truffleruffle customized homecooked food on top of TOTW kibbles.

FOOD BOWL & PET ACCESSORIES

Of course, food bowl and accessories! There will never be enough :”)

ESSENTIALS OPTIONAL
Food bowlPee Pad Trays
Water bowlCrate
(if you do crate training)
Pee PadsDog cologne
Chew ToysDog bed
Training BagDog cooling blanket
Leash + Collar / Harness(Interactive) Toys
Nail GrinderGrooming brush (Ikea)
Shampoo (PLC)Baby gates

I have hyper-link all the products which we have gotten for Oolong over time in the table above, with some additional notes:

  • Pee Pad Trays. I put pee pad trays as optional because I didn’t particularly felt that it helped in any way, given that he would still step on the trays which have his pee. There’s also a constant odor since we only wash it once a week.
  • Crate. Initially, I wanted to do crate training but eventually realized that Oolong is not as destructive even when he is home alone and has free roam. We did buy a cage but it’s too weak to contain him so we are looking to sell it away.
  • Multi-way cruiser leash. I was hesitant at first but eventually invested in a multi-way cruiser leash and omg, I love itttttt. We have been using it so much because it just gives us a lot of freedom when we bring Oolong for walks. It’s also harder for him to “drag us” because we will layer the leash over our body and he can’t overcome our body weight.
  • Interactive toys. I placed this under optional because some dogs doesnt need the mental stimulation, like Milky. He doesn’t play with toys and rather sleep the afternoon away. For Oolong, he has bursts of energy throughout the afternoon and gets restless when is unable to release them. I got a snuffle toy and some interactive ones for him from Shopee and so far, the snuffle mat has been doing its job to keep him VERY busy. If you have meetings and need 30mins of quiet time, it might be worthwhile to invest in these.
  • Dog cologne. I put this as optional since I don’t think everyone needs one, but OMG I loveeee the one from Doggie balm. In fact, everyone in the office loves it so much that we all bought it for our dogs. Bath times can be crazy and chaotic and not something you look forward to because you get wet and your puppy might struggle to escape. So whilst it is not a long-term solution, we use the dog perfume to neutralize the odor of Oolong and it lasts for 1 full day. YES, we highly recommend the one from Doggie Balm!!

ENDING NOTE;

  1. Consider buying preloved items. For the cage & pee pad trays, I bought them from carousel because I didn’t feel the need to buy brand new ones. These are stuff that your puppy will outgrow, so there’s no point to invest (in my opinion). I also checked out this telegram chat to see what’s out there.
  2. Buy as you go along. You will feel the urge to buy everything (crazy pet parent alert). I bought the cooling mat and dog bed for Oolong but he rather sleeps on the floor since it’s much cooling for him. I eventually sell it away hahahahha.

TRAINING TREATS

Photo credit: dogtime.com

You are going to need A LOT of training treats. So it’s super important to buy a dog training bag (which I included above). It’s important to train your dog from puppyhood to avoid bad behaviors that might be harder to rectify in the future. Some people train with kibbles (to avoid calorie-overdose or diarrhea) but I hate the feeling of kibbles because it’s very sticky when their saliva touches the food.

My top recommendation for training treats. My criteria is on the texture, quality as well as the size.

  • Instinct Pet Raw Food Meal
    • It’s high-quality products that I know I can trust, and the shape is just nice for training treats!
    • Dry + Clean, so won’t have the sticky feeling after feeding your dog.
  • Iti Biti Air Dried Meat — PLC Exclusive
    • Love this from PLC. It’s $10+ for the 100g packet, and members get a 30% discount.
    • It’s the same price online and offline so I recommend that you buy from the stores and get the small one to avoid food boredom.
  • Ziwi Peak Good Rewards Dog Treats
    • I recently got to try this from this dog treat box which I bought from Perromart at $48 (which is a bad deal in my honest opinion) but I do like this because the dog treat is long and I think Ziwi Peak is not a bad brand (though comparably expensive and there are other alternatives out there).
    • But HMM, it is 5 calories per treat so ration accordingly since usually you will feed A LOT during training to enforce positive reinforcement.
  • Wagg puppy treats (biscuit) — PLC Exclusive
    • Okay, I bought this because I got sucked into the packaging (SO NICE?!?!) and the price cause it’s very affordable. But we have stopped buying this because Oolong is picky now and doesn’t like this as much.
    • Again, get this from PLC stores since it’s the same price online and offline.

ENDING NOTE;

  1. Don’t buy too much of the same food at the same time. Your dog will get bored. So don’t buy too much of the same food; try to interchange and keep things interesting because there’s a direct correlation between how tasty the food is vs. the attentiveness he is going to give you.
  2. Not all treats will be suitable for your pup. We fed Oolong duck wings from Absolute Holistic and he had very bad diarrhea. Same with chicken feet and lobsters. So we cut those off from his treats’ stash. So observe as you go along and there will be trial and error.

So many things to buy, so little time to save money 🤡

Expect to spend $200 – $500 for the first month of your puppy’s arrival since there are going to be trial and error as well as purchasing big ticket items such as crate, bowls and accessories. We keep a separate bank account for the dogs so that we are able to track our spending expenditure with him, and we also try not to go too crazy.

It’s fun shopping for your dog because there are so many options out there! If not, you can also redeem free samples to try from pawjourr.com before you commit to the full-sized items.

Have fun!!

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