Get that pen out, I have your must have things when you adopt a dog right here! Adopting a new dog is exciting, and you can get caught up and forget some things. I certainly did! I was not prepared when I brought my Lola home. I was just excited! If you have a list ready, though, you won’t have to worry about forgetting anything important in the midst of the excitement. Some of these may seem obvious, and maybe it was just me, but I imagine I can’t be alone in forgetting some of these things. Don’t judge, just keep reading for your must have things when you adopt a dog.
Must Have Things When You Adopt a Dog
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Food: Yes it seems like something obvious, but let me tell you from experience, that when I brought my dog home, I had to go out to the store and get her food! I was so excited that I had forgot to make sure I had something to feed her. You can find out what your new friend has been eating, and try to get that food. Even if it is not what you plan or want to feed her, you should transition her from her old food to her new food, not just change her diet suddenly.
Related: How to Choose the Best Dry Dog Food
Leash and collar
You definitely need a leash and collar when you pick up your new friend! Even if the rescue has one to give you, it’s usually a temporary leash designed for transporting, not long walks. I love to shop for new collars and leashes. One tip I have: although those retractable leashes are great because they allow your dog to walk ahead of you, they are not great training tools. You want a dog to walk next to you and a little bit behind, not ahead. Just get yourself a regular ole leash.
Basic grooming stuff
I wasn’t prepared with this stuff either! Writing this is making me realize how unprepared I was when I brought my pup home. So learn from me! Your new friend will need a bath. You don’t have to go crazy, you just need the right brush (some breeds will need something special) shampoo and a towel. My dog has a special towel for baths. (She is spoiled I know). The shampoo us up to you, there are many choices out there. I recommend something gentle, like a good oatmeal shampoo.
Your new furry friend will appreciate his own space. No one likes to be around someone all the time, right? Dogs like their own space as well. Mine go into their crates on their own now for some space. Depending on his age, he may have been bounced around a little. He is probably scared and nervous, as well as excited, but letting him know you created a space that is just for him might help ease him. Not to mention, you want a safe place for him to be when you leave the house, regardless of how great of a dog he is.
Toys! You need toys!
Chew toys, balls, tug toys! Just hold off on a shopping spree at the store. Dogs actually have preferences just like we do. My Lola does not like rubbery chew toys (I don’t blame her, do you like to chew on rubber? It tastes awful!) She really only prefers to play tug-o-war. My daughter can put her stuffed animals in her crate (and she does, I think the dog has more than she does) and they are never chewed on. She’s a weird one. Toys are not only fun, but a training tool, so go get some!
I am giving you a virtual high five for adopting! You won’t regret it, you just gave someone quality of life, regardless of his age. Don’t do what I did, be a little more prepared to bring your new furry friend home! Have fun and give him some time to get acclimated to new surroundings and new people. Show him lots of love, and play and have fun!