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New Puppy Checklist

Things You Need Prior to Your New Puppy's Arrival

Before you bring your Yorkie or Shih Tzu puppy home, be sure you are prepared for your new puppy's arrival. Some of the items are included in the new puppy pack you will receive when picking your puppy up from me, and are noted. Otherwise, you will need to purchase some of these items prior to your puppy’s arrival home.

  1. Food: I will include a starter bag of my recommended food in your puppy pack, enough to last for a few days. If you decide to switch foods just make sure you are feeding a high quality food and please do so gradually. Mix their new food with their current food over the course of around 5 days to avoid tummy upset. PLEASE NOTE that changes in diet also cause stress, so DO NOT attempt to switch their diet (brand of food) on their first day of arriving at their new home, as this may very well cause tummy upset and/or diarrhea.

    Feeding Schedule: Keep dry food and water available at all times, especially during the first few days of their new home transition. Small breed puppies are nibblers and you do not want your puppy to become hungry.

    Pick up some honey nut cheerios for treats.

  2. Small stainless steel or ceramic, non-tip food and water bowls. Do not use plastic bowls! They are simply not sanitary. They harbor germs that are not easily washed away. Puppies also LOVE to chew plastic food bowls.

  3. Crate and/or Playpen: Your puppy should have their own special place to feel safe and secure when you’re not home or unable to supervise them, and when they’re tired and need to rest. A crate and/or playpen will serve as your Yorkie or Shih Tzu puppy's new "den", and should contain a soft comfortable bed, fresh food and water, and a favorite toy. Even though they may not seem to like it at first, they will quickly become accustomed. You will also find that both are also great house-training aids.

    Gates are also extremely useful since you do not want your new Yorkie or Shih Tzu puppy to have full run of your house. Designate the doors and hallways that need to be blocked by baby gates, and do so before bringing your new puppy home.

  4. Small Soft Comfortable Bed: Pick a size that is appropriate for your new Yorkie or Shih Tzu puppy.

  5. Toys: I do include a toy in my puppy packs. High-quality, safe chew toys ease teething. I'm particularly fond of the rope toys. Also, plush toys with squeaky parts are great (they LOVE them), but can be dangerous. Make sure to inspect squeaky toys often and always supervise play. Puppies are famous for getting the squeakers out and they can pose a choking risk and become dangerous if swallowed. Childrens toys are NOT appropriate and sewn on eyes and other parts will be chewed off and pose a choking risk.

  6. Small Brush and Comb: Daily brushing or combing is important to keep coat in shape and only takes a few minutes.

  7. Hygiene Items: Puppy shampoo (tearless), dog toothbrush and toothpaste. Baby wipes come in handy for all sorts of things from cleaning feet to wiping up around the eyes. Small dog or puppy nail clippers are a must.

  8. Pet Stain Remover: Enzyme based works best. Accidental soiling will happen and you will need to make sure all traces are gone.

  9. Washable Potty Pads: Even if you plan on training your new puppy to eliminate outside, potty pads will still be necessary for the housetraining process. Young puppies need to "go" often and will need a designated spot to eliminate during the night and when nobody is home. I HIGHLY recommend washable pads! Disposable pads may be more convenient but they are a choking hazzard, especially to young puppies. Washable pads are also environmentally friendly and will end up saving you money in the long run.

  10. Harness and Leash: You will need both an xtra small harness and a 6-foot leash. Do not use a leash with a regular collar. This creates issues with a Yorkie or Shih Tzu puppy’s trachea. Collars are to be only used for bling or tags only. Do not attach a leash to a collar!! Harness only!

  11. Nutra Cal for Puppies: This is a high calorie supplement to head off hypoglycemia (low blood sugar). The nutra cal will help if your puppy is becoming lethargic. Hypoglycemia can be deadly if left untreated. Corn syrup (Karo) can also be used if your puppy shows any signs of hypoglycemia.

  12. Puppy-Proof Your Home: Puppies are curious, fast and will chew on almost anything. Just accept that if an object is within a puppy's reach, it is going to get chewed, so NEVER leave your new puppy to roam free unsupervised.

    To help make your home safe for your new puppy, eliminate potential hazards around the house.
    • Make sure electrical wires are out of reach or cover them.
    • Make outlets safe by installing plastic outlet plugs.
    • Make sure items such as shoes are not left where puppy can reach them.
    • Safely store household chemicals and poisons.
    • Keep the following house and garden plants out of reach: poinsettias, azaleas, rhododendrons, dumb cane, Japanese yew, oleander and English ivy among others.
    • Keep breakable objects out of reach.

    Puppies have to be taught what is acceptable, so until your puppy has worked through the “chew everything stage” keep a watchful eye on them and provide plenty of safe toys. If you favorite rug gets chewed or your expensive piece of furniture, do not get angry with your puppy. It is your fault for not supervising him/her and teaching what is acceptable. Puppies are infants, treat them with patience, constant supervision and a gentle touch.

  13. Schedule an appointment with your veterinarian for a health exam BEFORE picking up your new puppy. The appointment should be scheduled for no more than 3 days after their scheduled pick-up date. Even though all of my puppies have had a health check by my veterinarian, I still require their new owners to have a health check performed to validate my health guarantee.