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Preparing for a New Puppy? Here is what to Expect

11 min read

New puppies are exciting, but there’s lots you need to do to prepare! Get ready for the excitement (and hard work) of puppy ownership with our guide.

Preparing for your new puppy is such an exciting time. Pretty soon you’re going to have a small ball of fur (and joy) running around the house and you’re thinking already about all the fun times ahead. But are you also prepared for the hard work and the time-consuming, sleep-depriving part of welcoming a puppy into the family? Very few puppy owners realise just how much their life is about to change. This might all sound a bit scary – but don’t panic! There are also plenty of amazing moments only a dog owner can experience.

Here are some of the things no one tells you before preparing for a new puppy, plus a few things to look forward to.

New puppy checklist

Put together the puppy checklist and go shopping. This part of preparing for a puppy is so much fun that it will take lots of willpower to stop you buying the whole shop! Although it can be tempting to buy lots of new things for your new dog, you should make sure you buy the essentials first

  • Two bowls - one for food and one for water. These can be ceramic or stainless steel, as long as they can be properly cleaned.
  • A nylon or leather lead and collar. To help to train your dog to walk on the lead, and not to pull, you might want to get a gentle leader head collar. These make training easier and stop bigger pups from pulling you off your feet!
  • Grooming equipment.
  • Some safe, fun, stimulating toys.
  • A bed. There’s a huge choice of beds available so find one that’s right for your dog’s size and temperament – some are more destructible than others! Whichever type you choose, put it somewhere warm and quiet where there are no draughts.
  • An indoor metal mesh kennel or crate. Puppies in particular often like the security of a crate to make into their own secure den. If you drape a blanket over it and put their bed inside, it becomes their safe place where they can hide and rest when they need some peace and quiet. Crates also help to speed up the process of house training as pups won’t want to soil their special place.
  • Food. Check what type of food your puppy has been given by the breeder or rescue centre and continue with that same diet for at least a week. You can swap their food, gradually over a period of time later if you like, or if there are health reasons for doing so.

You might be a little bit stressed by all the puppy preparation checklists and all the various supplies you need to take care of before the pup arrives home.

Dogs might be hard work, especially in the early weeks – but anything worthwhile is. Dogs enrich our lives and give us so much pleasure and unconditional love from the moment we bring them home. Puppyhood is actually one of the most magical times you can spend with your dog. You are forging a bond that will last for life and it really is as simple and as much fun as everyone suggests.

Watch to see how new puppy parents in Purina survived their puppy's settling-in phase.

Knowing what to expect and being well prepared for your puppy will set you both up to succeed and make your first few weeks together a joyful voyage of discovery as you get to know and trust each other.

Read more useful tips about how to get puppy sleeping arrangements right from the start and make sure you start puppy training early on and you’ll be set for a great start to your lives together. Have fun!

Explore our puppy food:

PRO PLAN Small and Mini Puppy OPTISTART Chicken Dry Dog Food

PRO PLAN® Small and Mini Puppy OPTISTART Chicken Dry Dog Food

PRO PLAN Medium Puppy OPTISTART Chicken Dry Dog Food

PRO PLAN® Medium Puppy OPTISTART Chicken Dry Dog Food