Puppy Checklist

Below you will find the puppy products we recommend for your new addition to the family.
 
When you have the right tools and setup prepared before picking up your puppy, life with your new puppy becomes 100% easier!

Food and Treats

Choosing the right food to feed your new puppy is crucial to their overall health and well-being and something that should be done with careful thought and consideration. 

This is one of the many reasons why we choose to feed our dogs TLC Whole Life Puppy/Dog Food. Delivering the ultimate balance of quality meats, animal fats, vitamins and minerals, TLC Whole Life Puppy Food provides everything your puppy needs to develop into a strong, healthy and energetic dog. 

For a complete list of ingredients and how they benefit your puppy please visit: 

https://www.tlcpetfood.com/93192-1025

TLC biscuites are great for an everyday treat like when putting the dogs to bed. Our dogs eagerly go in their crates and wait for us to drop a couple of these in for them. 

They break into small pieces easily, but do create crumbs. For training purposes it is easier and cleaner to use kibble or one of the training treats below. 

I highly recommend the freeze dried treats and Pill Pockets. However, any small bite treat will do for training purposes. You can even use hotdogs or boiled chicken cut into small pieces. 

Just click the images to be directed to Amazon for purchase. 

On the subbject of all things edibble... Oral health is super important. If you've ever had your dog's teeth cleaned, you know it can run a couple hundred dollars if not more.  I have linked below the products we use to keep our pup's breath and teeth in good condition.

 

Yes.. we have recomended tooth brush and tooth paste. You can opt for one that resembles that of which we would use or you can get the kind that fits over your finger.  I personally like the one that fits over my finger so I can feel where the tooth meets the gum to ensure I'm targeting the right area. 

One of the questions I get asked most often is where we purchase the Bully Sticks we put into the puppy packs. It seems like we've tried them all at this point, but these have low or zero odor and are a great long lasting treat to keep your pup busy.  These are also safe to place in the crate with your pup. 

Food bowls are a must-have item. I personally use stainless steel ones mainly because they harbor less bacteria than glass or other materials. I also prefer stainless so I can throw them in the dish washer and not worry about paint or other decorations flaking off in the wash. ​

Training Supplies

This crate comes in different sizes. We recommend the 42 inch crate for our Standard Labradoodles and a 36 inch crate for Medium Labradoodles. You have the option of a single or double door and it comes with a divider. Thats right! You only need to purchase ONE crate. Not multiple over the course of the first year, just one. 

We recommend using a crate as a Potty Training Tool.

As mentioned before, we crate train all of our dogs. Most of them roam freely in the house 24/7 now, but they were crated as puppies.

Just like we use cribs for our human babies... We use crates for our fur babies! Simple as that.

  Not only do Dog Crates keep your puppy safe and help with potty training but crate training is also helpful at avoiding separation anxiety issues from developing. Crate training teaches puppies how to self soothe and learn to feel safe and content even when left alone.

You wouldn’t let your human toddler crawl all over the house while you slept or worked…please don’t let your puppy!


I honestly believe Crate training is a win-win for both you and YOUR PUPPY!

Crates should only be used for VERY short periods of time (based on age). Once potty training is completed you can leave the crate door open and belive it or not.. they’ll STILL use it as their safe place to hang out and sleep… if you’ve done it cotrectly.

Work during the day?

If you are away from the home for more than 4 hours at a time, a setup similar to below may be a good option for you. At least until your puppy's bladder matures and they can hold it for extended periods of time.   

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In addition to the crate and exercise, or "X" pen, we recommend placing a tarp underneath the pen to protect your floors. Inside the pen you can place food, water and toys for your puppy to have access to. 

You'll also need to designate a potty area for your puppy.

Your puppy will already be litter box trained when you pick them up so using a litter box would be the easiest for the puppy. We use alfalfa pellets, but you can use any kind of litter you chose  Just make sure it's not harmful if eaten. 

Other options for potty area could be a turf option. They make artificial or real turf potty solutions. 

We don't recommend potty pads as they usually get shredded and it can also lead your puppy to forming a habit of using the potty on other absorbent surfaces around the house. 

Click the images below for more information or to purchase from Amazon.

If you don't want to crate train, or just want an extra potty training tool to help your pup let you know when they need to go, you can BELL TRAIN your pup. PoochieBells comes with a guide on training as well!

Keep in mind that if you choose not to crate train you MUST have eyes on your puppy constantly and learn how to read their "got-to-go" body language. It isn't impossible to potty train without a crate, but it does take more effort. 

Grooming Tools

Having the RIGHT TOOLS to tackle your Labradoodle's coat will make your life and you puppy's life a lot easier. 

Let the motto here be to "Work SMARTER not Harder."

Owning a doodle means there WILL be matts at some point. Usually they are caused by the coat getting wet or friction. The ABSOLUTE must haves in your grooming arsenal are a slicker brush, comb and a dematting tool. We have tried and tested... a LOT so you don't have to

The slicker bush is fairly pricey, but is WELL worth the investment. I know it’s tempting to try a cheap version, but it’s better in the long run to get a good brush. Why? Because the pins on cheap brushes will be stiff and sharp which can hurt your dog, the handle will break, and the bristles will wear out in no time. You’ll actually save money buying one good brush over a dozen cheaply made ones.​​​

A good dematting spray will cut your brushing time in half. "The Stuff" is the best leave in detangler we've found. This stuff will not only loosen up any tangles but will keep your pup cleaner longer and prevent staining, plus it smells great! Just one extra tool to have in your bag when it comes to grooming time. No need to ever shave your doodle again!

When it comes to bath time for your doodle, this shower attachment is a lifesaver

Seriously, this simple tool will not only save you time, but will also save your back.

If you plan on EVER giving your dog a bath at home I highly recommend getting this or something similar. 

For our dogs with white, we use a whitening shampoo. However, we tend to use baby shampoo around the eyes. For our solids and merle dogs we use Mane 'n Tail shampoo. 

Ear care for your Doodle

 The ear care cleaner I trust and use the most is the Pharmaseb Ear Cleanser. Our vet turned us on to this a while back and it smells amazing. When our first doodle kept getting ear infections our vet recommended we clean the ears with this once a week and anytime our dog went swimming or had a bath. Once we were on a schedule with proper ear care we never had another ear infection. 

Some doodles have what is called the "poodle ear." Meaning they have a good amount of hair in the ears. It's recommended that you either keep the hair cut even with the ear opening or pluck the hair from the ears. If you choose to pluck the hair you'll need gripping powder, hemostats or both. 

Nails

It is recommended that you trim your dog's nails once a month. These kind of dog nail clippers are great because the guard stops you from clipping the nails too short and having a bloody and painful experience for your puppy or dog. If you cut too short and clip the nail’s “quick” (the flesh area under the root of the nail) it will bleed. You can use the guard on these to make it MUCH easier and just snip the tip-off the nail. When you got a wiggley puppy these are super helpful. It's a good idea to have some styptic powder on hand just in case the cuticle does get cut on accident. 

If grooming your pup yourself interests you, you'll need a good, professional clipper. We have the one below and it has been around for a few years and still going strong. 

Be prepared for your puppy or dog to look funny the first couple of times. Believe me, my poor dogs have had some humiliating hair cuts. On the plus side, you'll save lots of money!