Your pre-puppy checklist

A series of dog blogs from the Underwater Dogs Haircare Company. Informative, candid; with a touch of dog-lovin' humour. - Chapter 6

Author: Gayle Walker – Founder of Underwater Dogs Haircare Company.
A massive love for Ralph (the family dog-hooman) and a passion for professional haircare saw the Underwater Dogs Haircare Company evolve from dream to viable concept. In affiliation with Seth Casteel, world renown Photographer and New York Times Best Selling Author of ‘Underwater Dogs,’ Gayle’s aim is to educate dog owners about good skin & hair health in dogs, along with a splash of underwater fun. Find out more about the Underwater Dogs Haircare Company here.

As we bring Book One of our Series ‘A Life with Dogs’ to a close, let’s take a moment to recap on where we’ve been…

BOOK One has been dedicated to all those who have never owned a dog, have always wanted to, or are about to introduce a new puppy, OR dog to their family.

Maybe you’ve owned a dog but feel you need a refresher; another perspective, or an opportunity to see what’s new (or not).

Topics such as ‘The right time to get a dog? What type of dog might be right for you. Tips on Buying, Adopting and Fostering a dog.’

And along the way, I have introduced you to my own canine journey – learning to become a dog-mum like many before me.

A learning curve for sure!

No matter whether you shop, adopt, or foster; dog ownership is special.

So, let’s discuss how to prepare for your beautiful new Puppy.

Bringing Home a new puppy is an exciting occasion for the whole family; but it is not one that comes without a fair amount of work and consideration. 

Never fear, Underwater Dogs brings you the ultimate Puppy hand book; the quintessential, ‘things you should know’ to help prepare for one of the most amazing experiences your family will ever share.

Here’s it is…

“Everything I know I learned from dogs” – Nora Roberts

To avoid racing out to the store multiple times after you bring your new puppy home (like I did), be prepared.


Here’s UWDOGS Top Must-Have’s for bringing home your new Puppy

Now let’s get started!

1. Food

If purchasing your puppy from a breeder, find out ahead of time what type of food your new dog is eating and stock up. Your breeder will lead you in the direction they feel is best for your pup, so take this on-board.

If deciding to change your pet’s food in any way, make sure you do so slowly, as the only thing worse than driving to a pet store in search of a tummy-friendly dog food, is running out to find cleaning supplies to take care of a sick puppy’s messes.

2. Dog Bowl

While eating out of Tupperware containers may be easy and convenient for you, it looks far more pleasing to the eye to provide your pet with ceramic food and water bowls.

Purchase ones that will last and are the appropriate size for your puppy’s intended full-grown size.

Of course, this does not mean that you free-feed your puppy. What, and how much he eats will have overwhelming influence with their on-going health.

Where your Puppy eats will also help establish good meal-time manners moving forward.

And, try to be consistent with where you place their bowl as they will be more than happy to accommodate with “best manners” when waiting for a meal to be served?!

3. Treats

Training a puppy is essentially a 3 Month game of “eat this, not that,” and high-value treats make potty training, obedience training, and crate training infinitely easier.

Do your research, naturally derived new puppy treats will be best for their new-born status.

4. Toys

Unless you really don’t like your favourite pair of sunglasses or that leather briefcase, it is in the best interest of every pet owner to provide a new puppy with plenty of  appropriate chew toys.

According to both the American Kennel Club, and the Australian Kennel Club, teething puppies should have hard rubber, hard nylon, or thick rope toys; not toys with stuffing, thin rubber squeaky toys, or cooked bones.

Dogs explore the world with their mouths, and giving them proper toys to play with is far more constructive than expecting them not to chew.

5. Cleaning Supplies

Like human children, your new puppy will be masterful in finding ways to make a mess – oops!

Make sure you stock up on plenty of cleaning supplies, such as a handheld vacuum cleaner for when plants get knocked over and enzymatic spray cleaners for puppy accidents around the house.

6. Collar and Leash

A dog is not a part of the family until he or she receives a proper collar…

According to our hero Miss Lady, in Lady and the Tramp…

Why Miss Lady, you’re wearing a collar…

The greatest honour man can bestow. A badge of honour, and respectability!”

So, make sure your pet has a collar (with identification) ready to go when it arrives to its new home, as well as a leash.

7. Grooming Supplies

Keeping a puppy looking squeaky clean isn’t exactly the easiest job, so you should be sure to stock up on all the grooming essentials, including a soap-free and pH balanced shampoo and conditioner like Underwater Dogs Puppy Shampoo & Conditioner.

We’re proud of what we do and recommend our extra-mild, naturally moisturising puppy product for both brand new skin, and or for those who have sensitive, dry, itchy or allergy-prone skin.

Start out the way you mean to continue with good quality products (not your own hair shampoo), grooming brushes, ear cleaner, nail clippers, and an absorbent towel (like microfibre) will be a great start.

8. Veterinarian

Before you bring your puppy home, make sure you have already decided which veterinarian you will be taking your puppy to when it is time to have vaccines, be spayed or neutered, and receive a wellness exam.

Your choice of Veterinarian can make all the difference to your dog over time, and both dog and owner must feel comfortable with the services, and personal relationship that abounds.

9. Obedience

Trust us on this one – having the information for a training facility on hand will save a lot of hassle when you’re searching for your phone that has been buried in the back yard or, typing on the laptop that has muddy paw prints across the screen!

Victoria Stilwell, one of the world’s most recognised and respected dog trainers says,

Puppies need to be gently guided into making good decisions, allowed to investigate their environments and given reinforcement for the good behaviours they do, as well as being redirected from indulging in behaviours that you don’t want. 

All puppies need boundaries, but these must be given in a humane way so as not to in-still fear.

10. Crating

If you intend to use a crate as a training tool, purchase one before you bring your new puppy home.

This will help you avoid putting off the task until your puppy is nearly full grown, when he or she becomes more difficult to crate train.

Crate’s do not have to-be-seen-as-time-out or jail…

They can be part of the furniture.

11. Schedule

Before you pick up your puppy you should create a schedule with your family to determine your new puppy’s daily routine – like…

When you will be walking and feeding -and who gets to go on late-night potty outings.

Don’t all volunteer at once now!

12. Emergency Information

If dogs have taught us anything, it’s that anything that can go wrong, will go wrong.

To be best prepared, have emergency information on hand such as canine poison control, and the number for a 24 Hour veterinarian in your area.

13. Bed – Yours or their own?

Even if you intend to co-sleep with your new baby puppy, make sure to provide him or her with a bed of its own.

Pro-tip: a dog bed that is comfier than the couch not only shows how spoiled your dog is but leads to less dog hair on the upholstery!

Ultimately, bringing home a new puppy is a joyous occasion, one that is not without the necessity of having a little bit of humour when it comes to all the surprises that puppies bring. 

When prepared with the above items, you will find you can spend more time bonding with your new puppy than finding yourself frustrated at being unprepared.

So, why not keep these tips and tricks at hand – or download them.

DOWNLOAD – UWDOGS Top must-have’s for bringing home your new Puppy here. 

The Jerry Files

Pup Update – Twelve Weeks

“At twelve weeks Jerry has totally taken charge, or at least that’s what he thinks! Growing so fast, so cute, my shadow, and still so many firsts. His face is changing and the colour of his coat is becoming more distinctive. He hasn’t been allowed to walk in public places due to vaccination requirements, but his first walk OMG – SO EXCITING – complete with a brand-new Harness, which fits perfectly! Inquisitive plus, Jerry’s nose is into EVERY-THING. We’ve enjoyed Puppy School, our first bath, first swim, and furiends over to play. I cannot express just how much he means to us.” Ash Sukhwani a.k.a. Mother of Jerry.

Now brace yourself Book Two – ‘Puppy Essentials’ is a heart-beat away.

Chapters covered in BOOK TWO include:
Chapter 7 – New Puppy Woohoo
Chapter 8 – Choosing a Name
Chapter 9 – Teaching your Puppy it’s Name
Chapter 10 – How to Feed your Puppy
Chapter 11 – Food Puppies Should Never Eat
Chapter 12 – Crate Training
Chapter 13 – Potty Training
Chapter 14 – Spay or Neuter
Chapter 15 – Introducing your Dog to other Animals
Chapter 16 – Socialisation and your Dog

Up next – Chapter Seven: New puppy Woohoo!

To receive each new chapter directly to your inbox, you can subscribe to A Life With Dogs’ blog HERE.


A Life with Dogs is brought to you by the Underwater Dogs Haircare Co. A professional haircare company for dogs, promising you the cleanest, softest most delicious smelling dog on the block! Professional grooming salon formulas, naturally moisturizing shampoos and conditioners soap-free, paraben-free and pH balanced especially for dogs. We’re proud of our product range and reassure all dog-loving customers that our quality ingredients and scientific formulations will not let you down. All products are backed by the Underwater Dogs 100% Money Back Guarantee because, we care for dirty dogs. Customer Service: woof@uwdogs.com USA: uwdogs.com AUS: uwdogs.com.au