So You’re Getting a Dog…What Do You Need!?

For all of those out there like myself who didn’t have dogs growing up, I wanted to write today about how Josh and I have prepared for little Cooper.  Luckily, I was around when my sister brought home her two pups, Max and Brody, and Josh had dogs growing up, so I got lots of outside suggestions.  On top of that, we found The Vizsla Forum and have used it a lot.  But first…let me officially introduce Cooper to all of you (well, for those of you who didn’t see him on my Instagram already).

Look at those legs!!

Look at those legs!!

We were given the choice between Blue Boy and Green Boy.  Blue Boy was 7 lbs 4 oz, wasn’t afraid of anything, and had more energy.  Green Boy was 6 lbs 12oz, was calmer but a little more skittish when the other puppies and doggies were playing.  We went the bravest, Blue Boy, now named Cooper!   One more picture of the cutie patootie!

SleepyWinking Cooper - Was it really necessary to wake me up for this?

Anyway, let’s get to it!!

So You're Getting a Dog What Do You Need

Let’s talk about FOOD/TREATS…

Our breeder recommended Taste of the Wild which is sold at Tractor Supply Co. and other dog food stores, but not sold at PetSmart or PetCo.  We decided to keep him on the same food brand (we went with the Taste of the Wild Hi Prairie Canine Formula with Roasted Bison and Venison after reading reviews on The Vizsla Forum).  And we got two small bags…just in case it suddenly messes with his stomach.  Once we have confirmation he’s enjoying it we’ll get the big bag.  Oh, and we plan on getting it via Amazon Prime.  (FREE SHIPPING and we won’t have to drive 50 minutes round trip to get his food each month.)

Our breeder also told us if we couldn’t find Taste of the Wild we could use Blue Buffalo, but she doesn’t use it because the amount of berries in it can upset their stomach.  We found the Taste of the Wild food so no worries there but for treats we went with Blue Buffalo.

So You're Getting a Dog: Food/Treats (Taste of the Wild/Blue Buffalo)

Let’s talk about TOYS…

We got him quite a few toys!  Even though we’re not sure he’ll be into playing with them on the car ride home, (it’s a 12 hour car road, including stops) we wanted to avoid the possibility of him ever getting bored.  Once we know what he likes we’ll buy more.  Until then, here’s what we got…

Kong Braidz Monkey Plush Dog Toy (Large)
Nylabone Dura Toy Chicken Flavored Rope/Pacifier Puppy Dog Chew Toy
Petstages Rag Rope Ball
Petstages Dogwood Stick (this was a gift from Emily and the pups)
Kong Puppy Goodie Bone (small)
Kong Wubba
And we have one more plain rope on the way

So you're getting a dog: toys (Kong, Nylabone, Petstages)

Let’s talk about COZY ITEMS…

Even though we will be allowing Cooper on the furniture, we wanted him to have a bed to roll around in and be a maniac in.  Like this puppy…

We got Cooper this TopPaw/Petsmart Gel Memory Foam Lounger Pet Bed (35″Lx23″W).  We also ordered a cheap fleece blanket off of Amazon which we will use throughout the car ride home and will be the blanket we keep in his crate.  Additionally, we have some fleece sweaters for him that my mom has made.  If you sew at all she says they are insanely easy to make and take no time at all.

So you're getting a dog: cozy items (dog fleece sweaters, fleece blanket, dog bed)

Let’s talk about CRATES…

Cooper will be between 40-60lbs, but since he was the biggest of his siblings we’re expecting him to be 50-60lbs.  We got this Petco Classic 1-Door Collapsable Dog Crate (Large: 36″Lx23″Wx25″H) that came with a divider to make housebreaking easier.  You don’t want your pup to be able to pee and then walk away in his crate!  And this way we don’t have to buy a crate as he grows – we can just continue to adjust until he’s big enough to fill up the whole thing.

So you're getting a dog: crate with divider

Let’s talk about LEASHES/COLLARS…

My aunt Barb gave us a collar with Cooper’s name on it for Christmas that we can’t wait to use.  It may not be small enough, though, for when we get him so we got an extra small collar for the first couple of weeks.  We also got a plain leash and a retractable one.  We figure the retractable one will be great for when we want to let him run and play but aren’t ready or in a place where we can let him off the leash.

So you're getting a dog: Collars/Leashes

Let’s talk about MORE (MISCELLANEOUS ITEMS)…

Obviously, poop bags are a necessity!  I learned about cable ties from Emily after Brody broke out of his kennel multiple times as a mischievous puppy.  We will use the cable ties to secure Cooper’s crate, and if we need to fold it up because we’re traveling we’ll just cut them off.  Josh made me aware of the Paw Pad wax/cream.  If provides protection for pups in extreme conditions (like snow) for pups who don’t like to wear boots.  We had heard great things about Musher’s Secret but since our Petsmart didn’t have it we went with 21st Century Essential Paw Pad Protector.  We’ll see how well it works!  Lastly, we got this Enrych Retractable Combo Brush for him.

So you're getting a dog: more/miscellaneous (poop bags, cable ties, pet paw protector, brush)

This just might be the longest week of my life.  I can’t wait to have my little vizsla puppy terror running my household and, well, running my life!  I also can’t wait until my mom is here!  She’s coming up on Sunday and staying with us for a week to help Cooper adjust to his new life before heading to DC with me for the Rock n Roll Half Marathon!

So tell me!  What are your puppy recommendations for…

Food
Toys
Cozy Items
Crates
Leashes/Collars
Other!