We are in the process of creating a retail page on our web page and I thought “wouldn’t it be great to have a training kit. So here is a list of must have equipment when raising a puppy and training an adult dog. When you go and pick up your pup you are going to need a crate. Let’s start crate training as soon as you pick your pup up. Now some would like to cradle the little darling in your lap all the way home, but let’s not start coddling the dog right off at the beginning. That is half the issues I see with families I work with, way too much affection and the pup has no rules. I am raising a puppy right now and she rode in a crate on the way home. We didn’t have any issues but if the pup would have pee’d or vomited I much rather have that in the crate than in my lap or carpet in my vehicle.
Before driving to the breeder my first stop was the pet store. I purchased a small crate for the size of my puppy, a flat collar, this 4’ leash, food dish and puppy food. I feed Victor High Pro Plus for puppies and high energy dogs. I also purchased a blue puppy Kong and some liver paste to put in the Kong. When the pup goes in the crate it gets a yummy liver treat. Crates are good, yummy treats are in crates.
You will need a food bowl, water bowl and some appropriate toys. I normally have a rubber ball, squeaky toy, and rope tug. Keep a leash on your puppy and let them drag it around. Don’t spend a lot on leashes the pup will chew on them. From 8 to 16 weeks I don’t worry about the pup chewing on the leash. I will address that when they are older. You will need a way to interrupt the puppy when its doing something you do not want them to do, for example chewing on the furniture. My go to tool is a squirt bottle. I fill the bottle with water and squirt the pup in the face when they are doing something wrong. This water hitting them will interrupt them and that is when you drag an appropriate toy in front of them to get them interested in that toy. I have had people tell me the pup like the spray bottle. You need to understand it’s not to punish the dog (squirt squirt squirt) it’s just to interrupt the behavior. Get them to stop doing whatever they are doing. Once the dog focus is interrupted introduce an appropriate toy.
As your pup grows bigger and faster it’s time to get a long line. The long line should be about 15’ long. Use the long line when the pup is outdoors. You can step on the line if the dog wants to run away from you. The stops the dog and teaches running away is not an option. You can also use the long line to teach come and boundaries.
You will also need treats for training. I suggest small eraser size treats so the dog stays hungry during training. The treats should also be soft and pliable so they are easy to eat. Hard crunchy treats take too much time to eat and make a mess. The treat should be swallowed quickly and then on with training. To go along with treats is a treat bag. Treat bags are convenient because you will need a place to store your treats and yet be able to get to them quickly.
Finally you will need poop bags. To be a responsible owner you need to pick up after your dog. Always be prepared when you are in public. Public places will accept dogs if owners will pick up after their dogs. If you are reading this blog article you are a responsible dog owner.
As your dog matures you will most likely need some sort of a training collar. There are a variety of types on the market. Training collars are to be worn by the dog when with the owner. If the owner is not with the dog or the dog is unattended the training collar should be removed. This will prevent accidents from happening. For example a dog will choke itself with a slip collar because they don’t know enough to move towards the collar to release the pressure so they will fight and pull until they no longer can breathe. Martindale collars are nice because you can’t choke your dog with these. I’m not a fan of gentle leaders but some people love them. I just don’t like the looks of them and they appear uncomfortable for the dog. I know I wouldn’t like being steered by my nose but that’s just me. There is a technique in working with training collars and they should be fitted properly. Most of the time when I see training collars on dogs they are not fitted properly. They should be snug and wore high on the neck. You are not going to hurt your dog, their necks are the most muscular part on their body and similar to human thighs.
Here is the list of must haves for training and raising dogs.
Toys: ball, squeaky toy, rope tug, blue kong
Victor dog food
and lots of yummy treats.