You’re getting a puppy! What an incredibly fun journey you’re about to begin!
Before you bring that wriggly bundle of joy home, make sure you’ve checked everything off this must-have puppy supply list. Trust me, you’ll be happy you did! It includes not only the supplies you’ll need, but how to organize them, too.
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In this article:
- Why Do I Need a Puppy Supply List?
- Puppy Books, Training Supplies and Paperwork
- Food & Treats
- Bedding, Crates & Gates
- Dog Grooming Essentials
- Collars, Leashes, ID Tags & Sweaters(!)
- Doggy Cleanup
- Pet Travel Organization
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Why Do I Need a Puppy Supply List?
I fondly remember when my husband and I were newly married and brought our baby bulldog Emmy into our home. So many wonderful memories. Wasn’t she adorable?
But along with joy also came chaos and a big upheaval in the house. We didn’t plan ahead or research all of the supplies a puppy needs, so we found ourselves running to the pet store A LOT.
Why do you need a puppy supply list?
Because getting organized for your new pet will save time, money, and lots of frustration!
Puppy Books, Training Supplies & Paperwork
Before you bring your new fur baby home, I highly recommend buying at least one book on raising puppies. Just like babies, they have particular growing phases and stages. It’s super helpful to refer to “the manual” throughout the puppy phase!
Amazon has a huge selection of books on how to raise puppies.
Whether it’s potty training, agility training or behavior training, the term “training” is going to be very important in your new life with a dog.
I love this video from Zak George on how he begins training his new puppy. Check it out for some cuteness, insight and inspiration:
Amazon offers a wide variety of training materials and supplies. Here are some of the highest-rated:
Caldwell’s Potty Bells Dog Doorbell
Clicker Treat Training Tool
The Company of Animals Pet Corrector Training Aid
Ultrasonic Dog & Cat Trainer
Puppy Paperwork Organization
Pets have paperwork that needs to be organized, just like humans! From breeder and AKC papers to vaccination and microchip records, your new puppy will have paperwork to stay on top of.
I keep my pets’ paperwork in a file folder in my family command center. It can also be filed in a home management binder if you prefer to keep everything together.
However you decide to organize your puppy’s papers, just make sure it’s all kept in one central location that you can easily access.
Food and Treats
Puppies and dogs eat food — lots of it! As well as treats, which are great ways to reward good behavior, keep teeth clean (and breath fresh), and satisfy the urge to chew. Because you don’t want them satisfying this urge with your shoes or furniture. (Been there, done that!)
What Should I Feed My Puppy?
When you walk down the pet food aisle, the options seem endless! And if you talk with friends, it feels like there are as many opinions on what to feed your puppy as there are types of food.
To help you make an informed choice, check out this guide to puppy food by WebMD. It includes expert tips on food types, nutrition and feeding schedules.
Once you’ve decided on the food you’re going to provide,
check out Amazon’s Subscribe and Save program
for dog food. I use this for my two cats and it works great!
How to Organize Dog Food and Treats
Here are a few ways to organize dog food and treats that will save time and avoid messes and spills!
Elevated Dog Bowls
First, let’s start with the dog bowls themselves. I prefer elevated bowls, as they prevent my pets from having to bend or strain to eat their food.
I also prefer ceramic or stainless steel bowls to plastic, as they are more hygienic and easy to clean.
Programmable Dog Feeder
You can keep your puppy on a precise feeding schedule (and be a little more hands-off) with a programmable dog feeder. This option can feed precise servings several times a day.
Next, a placemat is a must for keeping spills contained. Dogs and puppies can be very messy eaters and drinkers.
My recommendation is to choose one that is easy to clean, as you’ll be doing that a lot!
Dog Food Storage
Save yourself time and money by buying the largest bags of dog food you can, and then store it all in an airtight food container.
If you have a large breed, I like this option on wheels that comes with a separate treat bin and a big scoop:
And if you want to opt for something fancy that blends in with your existing home decor, you can opt for an all-in-one pet feeding station:
Dog Treat Storage
Treats are a big part of pet ownership, and a great way to reinforce positive behaviors.
I keep treats in airtight containers in my pantry and on the kitchen counter near the pet food bowls.
It’s also handy to keep treats near the door to reward your puppy for going potty outside or for good leash behavior right after a walk.
Bringing a puppy into the house means you’ll have toys. LOTS of toys. They’re both fun and necessary for your puppy’s development.
What Types of Dog Toys Do I Need?
You’ll want an assortment of toys that satisfy your dog’s need to chew, fetch, and tug. They will keep your puppy engaged, burn off some of that crazy energy and help your shoes and furniture stay intact!
To help with attachment issues or separation anxiety when you leave the house, I recommend a toy treat dispenser:
This will keep your pup busy and less focused on your departure. It made a huge difference for us when our Emmy was little.
How To Organize Dog Toys
All of those toys need a way to stay organized! Fortunately, there are as many fun, stylish dog toy organizers as there are toys.
Just like with children, for puppies it’s helpful to keep only a selection of toys (not ALL of them) in a bin that they can access. After a day or two, switch out the toys. This keeps boredom (and negative behaviors) at bay.
You can also keep a few different bins in different places throughout the house. One might go in the family room, another in the bedroom, etc.
Have one toy that satisfies each of your puppy’s urges in each bin: a ball for fetching, a rope toy for tugging, a squeaky plush toy for chewing and carrying, and possibly something for teething, if your puppy is in that stage.
Bedding, Crates & Gates
Which Type Of Dog Bed Is Best?
Next on the puppy supply list: the dog bed. Even if you plan to let your puppy sleep with you, at least one bed is a must in your home. It helps give dogs a sense of security and comfort and a place to call their own.
According to CanineJournal.com, different dog breeds are better suited to different bed types. When choosing a dog bed, consider your puppy’s size (now and in the future), type of fur (short-haired dogs might need something warmer and cozier), sleeping style, and temperament.
Once you have an idea of the type of bed you want for your puppy, check out dog beds here.
Should I Crate Train My Dog?
According to the Humane Society, crate training is an important tool to use when house training a puppy and for preventing damage to the home from chewing and digging when you’re not able to supervise.
The goal is to use the crate as a safe environment for your puppy, so keep it in a quiet place in the house. It shouldn’t be used for punishment, and younger puppies shouldn’t spend more than a few hours at a time in the create.
If you plan to crate train your puppy, I recommend starting from day one. The crate should be just large enough for the dog to stand, turn and sleep in…but not large enough to use one end as a toilet!
Do I Need A Dog Gate?
Dog gates are a great way to keep your puppy safe and secure in your home! Just like toddlers, puppies are naturally curious and will want to explore. And (just like toddlers) they can get into trouble very quickly when your back is turned.
So, use a dog gate to “puppy-proof!” American Kennel Club (AKC.org) has some helpful advice on the types of gates to consider for your home.
Once you’ve determined an appropriate gate type, you can shop for dog gates here.
Dog Grooming Essentials
Even if you plan to have your dog professionally groomed on a regular basis, there is a selection of grooming essentials that every dog owner needs for day-to-day care:
Keep all of your dog’s grooming supplies organized in a storage bin in a bathroom cabinet, linen closet, laundry room or pantry.
Collars, Leashes, Tags & Sweaters(!)
Do I Need An ID Tag For My Dog?
Every dog needs an ID tag. No ifs, ands or buts about it! If your puppy ever escapes the house (and it happens!), the ID tag is essential to recovering your fur baby fast.
One cold December night, I was closing the garage door and a huge
greyhound trotted right up to me from the street.
No collar, no tags, no way for me to get in touch with his owner…
…And with the vet’s office closed for the night, there was no way for me to tell anyone I had found their beloved pet. (This was long before Nextdoor and other neighborhood apps existed.)
I cuddled on the floor all night with this terrified, lost dog…just knowing the agony his family must have been in looking for him and wondering if he was ok.
If only he’d had his ID tag on, I could have saved his family a sleepless night. I will never forget the happy, hysterical sobs of his mother the next day after we connected via the vet’s office and she got her dog back.
If that’s not enough for you to take a few minutes to order a personalized pet ID
right now, I don’t know what is!
Collar vs. Harness: Which Is Better?
According to AKC.org, a harness is preferable to a collar. It serves the same purpose, to attach a leash and ID tag to your puppy, but it has additional benefits:
- Easier to control your dog on the leash
- Helps puppies learn to walk on a leash without getting tangled
- Easier on your arms and back during a walk with a strong dog
- Prevents injury from pulling too hard
- Much harder to escape from a harness than a collar
Check out Amazon’s wide selection of harnesses here.
What Type Of Leash Is Best For Puppies?
The answer is: it depends on your puppy. For some, a simple traditional nylon leash will be fine.
A retractable leash is nice once your dog is well-behaved on a lead and you want to give him or her some extra space.
How to Organize Dog Leashes and Harnesses
I recommend keeping leashes and harnesses together near the front door (or the door to the garage). You can store them in a bin, or hang them on the wall by the door using decorative hooks. I’m IN LOVE with this leash hanger:
Dog Sweaters And Other Accessories
When it’s time for a walk, don’t forget to consider the temperature! Smaller, short-haired dogs can get cold easily at night or in the winter months. Invest in at least one good dog sweater if your dog fits in this category.
You can hang the sweater with the leash and harness to keep all of your “outdoor adventure” gear together.
One more thing: holiday costumes are a puppy supply list MUST if your dog has the temperament for them! Check out a selection of fun dog costumes here.
Doggy Cleanup Supplies
When there’s a dog in your life, there’s poop in your life. Just no way around it. So, doggy cleanup supplies are an important line item on the puppy supply list.
Items you’ll need:
- Potty pads for potty training indoors
- Poop cleanup bags and scoopers
- Stain removers (accidents happen!)
- UV urine detector (helps you find and eliminate potty spots quick!)
Pet Travel Supplies & Organization
The final section on the puppy supply list: pet travel essentials. Because it’s more than likely that your puppy will be going places with you!
Just like with a baby, there are travel items for puppies that you simply can’t leave home without:
- Dog carrier for road trips
- Airline-approved dog carrier for plane trips
- Seat belt/restrainer to keep your pup secure in the car
- Car barrier to contain your dog to a specific area
- Car seat cover (trust me, this is necessary to keep fur and slobber under control!)
- Travel water bottles
- Travel food bowls
And you can keep it all stored and organized in a nice pet travel tote like this one:
For more road trip tips, visit
The Best Road Trip Organization Tips, Checklists & Hacks
Puppy Supply List & Organization: Final Thoughts
I wish you the best of luck with your new pup! You’re embarking on a journey together that will bring years of memories and loving companionship.
I hope the list and tips I’ve provided have helped you get organized for your new pet!
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