If your child has recently decided that they want a dog, and you believe that they’re ready for the responsibility that owning a pet brings, you need to make sure that you have all the essentials and equipment that every dog needs to thrive. If you’re struggling to get ready to bring a pet into your life, here are some of the necessities that you should invest in before your pet enters your front door and your life.
- A Bed
Firstly, you should look around for a bed for your dog. A bed can provide them with a safe space that they can retreat to when they’re stressed or tired, and this bed shouldn’t be shared with any of the other animals in your house. It should also be incredibly comfortable, and you should consider filling it with blankets and plush toys that your dog can use to create a nest for themselves and keep warm in winter.
When you’re looking for a bed for your dog, you should check that it’s the right size for them and consider that you might need to replace this as they grow. It’s also important to look for a bed that’s easily washable, as this will mean that it’s easy for you to keep this bed clean and prevent the spread of dirt and mud in your home. If you’re buying this bed second-hand, you should also ensure that the bed is in good condition, that it has no damage, and that it isn’t filled with toxic materials that could harm your pet.
- Food and Water Bowls
You also need to look around for food and water bowls for your pet. These food and water bowls should be large enough for your pets and you might consider getting a separate food bowl for both wet and dry food. You might also look for food and water bowls that are slightly raised, especially if you’re opting for a breed such as a greyhound, as this can make it easier for your pet to eat and drink from them.
You should think carefully about where you’re going to place the pet bowls. The best place to put them is a quiet location that has low traffic and where your pet can eat their food without being disturbed by the rest of your family. If you’re placing them in your kitchen or dining room, you might look around for decorative china bowls that fit in neatly with the rest of the décor in your home and that won’t look out of place.
Depending on the preferences of your pet, you might also look around for an automatic pet feeder. This can allow your pet to gain access to their food at a certain time and can mean that you don’t have to get up early or come home just to feed your dog. You might also look at investing in a pet fountain if your dog likes to drink running water and is fussy about water that has been standing for some time.
- Pet Insurance
However, not every essential that your pet needs is a physical item. Pet insurance is important so that you can afford your pet’s vet bills without any concerns, and so that your pet is protected in the event of an emergency.
Many people put off investing in pet insurance because it’s another monthly cost and they don’t believe that their pet will fall ill often enough to justify it. You can’t predict when your pet will get injured or develop a health condition, though, and it’s important that you take out insurance before they do as many insurance policies don’t cover pre-existing conditions.
This means that you should compare good insurance policies before your dog has even come home and that you’re able to find comprehensive pet insurance for dogs. This policy can be there when you need it and save you money over time.
You also need to think carefully about the food that you want to give your pet before you get it. Although you won’t be able to tell what type of food they like until they’re home with you, the number of food options out there can be overwhelming, so it’s best to start researching these in advance.
You should look for healthy and natural food options that have a high percentage of fresh ingredients and that aren’t filled with preservatives and additives that can end up harming your dog and that are essentially fast food for dogs. You might also look at specialist food for their stage in life, as well as food that could help any health conditions that they currently have, such as food that is gentle on their kidneys or that can boost their immune system. You should make sure that your pet is fed both wet and dry food and you should also consider adding fresh meat and fish, such as chicken and tuna, into the mix as you cook.
Although you might not see them as being essential, play is vital to a dog’s healthy development, so it’s important that you invest in a range of toys for them that can help to keep their brain and body fit. You should look for chew toys that can improve their dental health, as well as plush toys and even treat dispensing toys that can act as a puzzle. You should also look for toys that you can use on your walks together, such as ball launchers that can play a part in your games of fetch.
However, once you have bought these toys, you should pay attention to the ones your dog prefers and regularly inspect them for rips and tears that could create a choking hazard for your pet.
- A Leash and Collar
Walks are vital to a dog’s health as they’ll keep them fit, ensure that they maintain an average weight, and allow them to socialize with other dogs. To keep your pets safe on these walks, you should invest in a suitable leash. You might also look for extendable leashes that you can use once you’re away from busy roads that can give your dog more freedom. Additionally, you should invest in a collar that your leash can attach to and put a tag on it with your details so you can be contacted if your dog is found on their own.