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How to Choose and Purchase Necessary Dog Supplies for a New Dog

Updated on February 5, 2015

Bringing a new dog or puppy home can be a very exciting time. It can also be extremely dumb-founding, especially if you are a rookie in terms of dog ownership!

Pet merchandise is a billion-dollar industry and the thousands of supplies that hit you in the face the second you walk inside the pet store can easily overwhelm you. You may even be tempted and easily influenced to buy items that aren’t necessary. Before doing so, make a list of the necessary dog supplies you will need. Below is a list to get you started:


If you’ve never owned a dog, you may think that having a dog crate is unnecessary – and maybe even a bit cruel – but that couldn’t be further from the truth. In fact, not only will most dog owners tell you that a crate is a lifesaver in terms of doggie obedience and training, but that their dogs love their crates. By nature, dogs look for the security they receive in comfortable den-like surroundings which is what a crate offers them.

Dog crates come in roughly five sizes and can be made of wire, plastic or wood. You will want the size of the crate to be big enough that your adult-sized dog can comfortably turn around, but small enough where your dog won’t have extra room to go to the bathroom.

Note: If you are bringing home a puppy, buy a crate that can be divided and made smaller until your puppy is full-grown.

Dog Bed

A bed for your dog is a good idea whether or not you choose to have them sleep in their crate or in your bedroom. If the bed is intended to be used inside their dog crate, it should fit snugly inside. If the bed is not for the crate, it should be large enough for your dog to stretch out completely.

Dog beds are available in many styles and materials, but having the option to wash the dog bed (i.e., removable and washable cover) will save you a ton of time, money and energy in the long run.

Food and Water Bowls

Obviously your dog will need to eat and drink, so therefore food and water bowls are a must. There are four main options:

Great colors and designs
Prone to chipping and breaking
Can be tipped over; easily holds onto bacteria
Stainless Steel
Inexpensive; easy to clean
Not very fashionable
Low maintenance; can be used for longer periods of time
Can be expensive; can leak

Collar and Leash

Even if you intend to have a 100% indoor dog, you should always have a collar and leash on hand. You will need them not only for bathroom breaks and walks, but, for any time you intend to travel with your dog -- including vet visits.

Collars are usually made of nylon or leather and come in many adjustable sizes. Your dog collar should be tight enough where it won’t slip off and loose enough where your dog won’t choke. To tell if your collar is correctly adjusted, you should be able to fit two fingers between the collar and your dogs neck.

An alternative to the dog collar is a dog harness which is also adjustment but doesn't put a strain on your dogs neck.

Grooming Supplies

Whether or not your dog requires significant upkeep, there are a few essential grooming supplies you should have on hand. The basics should include:

  • Dog shampoo
  • Brush or comb
  • Scissors
  • Nail clippers. (Keeping your dogs nails trimmed is critical in having your dog happy and healthy.)

ID Tag

Once your dog is registered, you should always have his/her ID tag on the collar at all times. An ID tag should include:

  • dog's name
  • address
  • phone number
  • ID # given by the town

This information is critical in the horrific event that your dog ever becomes lost.


Without a doubt, dog toys are the items dog owners easily get carried away with and spend far too much money on. The simple truth is that your dog would love an empty toilet paper roll just as much as a $12.99 squeaky toy -- but nonetheless -- when owners are faced with the aisles upon aisles of dog toys, we can't fight the urge.

When purchasing dog toys, it isn't necessary to buy in build. Two or three items are more than sufficient at first. Yes dogs love variety, but that doesn't mean the variety has to happen all at one once. Space them out and add more over time.

Make sure that the toys you choose are not easily able to be ripped apart and chewed. Also make sure they don't contain parts small enough to be eaten and choked on.


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    • tillsontitan profile image

      Mary Craig 4 years ago from New York

      This is an excellent primer for the new dog owner. Your facts are good and you covered just about everything necessary to get that new dog settled into your home.

      Voted up, useful, awesome, and interesting.