Category Archives: essential supplies

Basic Supplies Needed for a New Dog

By Ruthie Bently

Bringing home a new dog, whether it’s a puppy or an adult, is like bringing home a new baby – you need to be prepared, and you need supplies. You should have a collar with an identification tag on it in case your dog gets lost. Even if you have a fenced yard for your dog to play in, you should have a leash for those trips to the vet or walks around the neighborhood. I suggest a six foot nylon leash unless your dog is an adult and not chewing anymore. Nylon is a sturdy material and stands up to most things except a determined chewer. Six feet is a good length, as it gives your dog enough room to step away from you to go potty and still gives you enough control. It will also keep your dog from tripping you up by accident.

You will need a supply of dog food of course (I use the CANIDAE Grain Free, four meat meal formula) and you will probably want dog treats too (I use both CANIDAE Snap-Biscuit® and Snap-Bits™ treats). You’ll want to get a set of bowls for their food and water; I prefer stainless steel because they are easy to keep clean and resist rusting. I’ve had the same set of bowls for over twenty years now and have never had an issue with rust. When I got my first puppy I bought bowls for the adult size dog that I knew my puppy would be when full grown. This way you only have to make the purchase once. I have a set of three quart bowls, which are a good size for any medium to large sized breed.

When you need to confine your new puppy or dog, such as when they need a time out or you just need a break, a dog crate is nice to have on hand. Dogs, like their wolf cousins, have an instinct to “den” and a crate is a good place they can call their own. If you have an aversion to crating your dog but aren’t quite ready to give them the run of the house, a pair of dog gates is a good way to confine them to a specific room. A washable fleece pad is a perfect choice for a teething puppy, and if your dog is past the chewing stage you can get them a regular bed so they have their own place to sleep.

Don’t forget to buy some toys to keep your new dog occupied. I like to have an assortment of chewing and interactive toys, and Skye also has a flying disc and a 10” ball she can chase in the yard, as well as sterilized and nylon bones for when she is on her own. She also has a cotton rope tug but isn’t allowed to play with that herself. If you choose a stuffed toy for your dog, don’t leave them alone with it and keep an eye on them when they are playing with it to prevent them from tearing it to shreds.

Dog shampoo is good to have on hand for a bath or spot cleaning if your dog rolls in something. I have an oatmeal based shampoo and a dry shampoo for Skye because I like the ease of giving her a spot bath if she gets her feet dirty after a walk in the mud. Make sure you get a shampoo made specifically for dogs though. The ph of a dog’s hair is different than ours, and you could harm their skin and coat by using shampoo made for people. You can also find tearless dog shampoos that won’t burn their eyes.

If you plan to groom your dog yourself, you will need a brush and comb suitable for your dog’s coat. You’ll also need a set of nail clippers and styptic powder for when their toenails need clipping. Grooming your dog is a great way to bond with them. Other items you may want to consider are a scooper for the yard and biodegradable poop bags for walks. Natural cleaners and deodorizers are handy to have for those unforeseen accidents, and an anti-chew product is a good idea for a new puppy.

Read more articles by Ruthie Bently

The personal opinions and/or use of trade, corporate or brand names, is for information and convenience only. Such use does not constitute an endorsement by CANIDAE® All Natural Pet Foods of any product or service. Opinions are those of the individual authors and not necessarily of CANIDAE® All Natural Pet Foods.

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Bringing Home a New Kitten or Cat

By Julia Williams

If I followed my heart, I would have a whole house full of cats. But as a responsible pet owner, I must follow my head which says three is my current limit. Now, many people would say three cats IS a house full, but never mind. If you are lucky enough to be adopting a new kitten or cat (or “angel with fur,” as I like to call them), there are some things you’ll need to do before you bring them home. Planning ahead for the fluffy new arrival will ensure that this transition goes smoothly, for you and your household as well as your new kitty.

The first thing on your agenda is shopping for all the essential supplies. You don’t want to bring the new kitty home and then run all over town looking for the things you’ll need to make them comfortable in their new surroundings. Essential supplies include a sturdy cat carrier, litter box, kitty litter, scooper, cat food and water dishes, grooming brush, cat bed or cat blanket, high quality cat food, scratching post and some toys. You might also way to pick up a book or two on cat care and behavior.

If you’re adopting a kitten, be aware that they are very fond of climbing and jumping, and they play enthusiastically with no consideration for your valuables. Therefore, kitten proofing your home is advised if you wish to keep your precious Ming vase in one piece. You’ll enjoy your rambunctious kitten’s antics a lot more if you move your breakables to a safe place for the time being.

You might also want to move any houseplants that are situated at floor level. Kittens (and even adult cats) are very attracted to plants, and they might chew on the leaves, sit on top of the plant or dig in the dirt. Moving your plants to less accessible areas, like the top of a bookshelf or outdoors in nice weather, will ensure that they don’t become a plaything for your kitty. Many common houseplants are actually poisonous for cats and should be removed from your home entirely. The Cat Fanciers’ Association has a detailed list of all the plants to avoid.

When it’s time for your kitty to come to their new home, it’s imperative that you transport them in a pet carrier. A loose cat riding in the car is a surefire recipe for disaster, as is carrying them from car to house in your arms. If possible, bring a towel for your new kitten or cat to sleep on for a few days before “moving day,” so it will have something familiar in the new surroundings. This will comfort the kitty and help it feel more secure with this big change.

Arrange to situate the new kitten or cat in a quiet place in your home, like a spare bedroom. It should be someplace where the kitty can be away from the hustle and bustle of your home, particularly if you have children or other pets. It’s also a good idea to limit introductions to family members (both two and four legged) for the first few days, which allows kitty to settle in, and minimizes the stress of being in a new environment. Put all of the new kitty’s essential supplies in this room for the time being.

Don’t force the kitty to come out of the carrier, just open the door and let them come out when they’re ready to explore. Leave the open carrier in the room so the kitty can go back into it if they get frightened by something and want a safe place to hide. But don’t be surprised, though, if they take up residence under your bed or in the back of your closet for those first few days. Eventually your new kitten or cat will become braver and venture out to explore their room.

It’s a good idea to arrange to bring your new kitten or cat home on the weekend or at a time when someone can be there with it for a few days. It’s frightening for an animal to be taken to some strange new place and then left all alone. Being there for this transition will help the new kitty bond with you and feel safe in their new forever home. And, it will go a long way toward creating a well-adjusted, happy cat.

I hope these tips on bringing home a new kitten or cat will help you to take good care of them. I only wish I could be there to give your new kitty a “welcome home” kiss.

Read more articles by Julia Williams

The personal opinions and/or use of trade, corporate or brand names, is for information and convenience only. Such use does not constitute an endorsement by CANIDAE® All Natural Pet Foods of any product or service. Opinions are those of the individual authors and not necessarily of CANIDAE® All Natural Pet Foods.