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Pet Supplies and Caring for a New Pet

When adopting a new dog or cat, stock up on pet supplies for pet grooming, pet odor and supplies for new puppies and kittens at your local Tractor Supply Co., your pet supply store.

Pet Supplies You Need for a New Dog or Cat

Here is a list of pet supplies you should have on hand when adopting a new dog or a cat:

  • Pet food and water bowl
  • Pet collar
  • Pet identification tag
  • Pet carrier (cats and small breed dogs)
  • Pet crate (for medium or large breed dogs)
  • Pet bed
  • Pet grooming supplies such as a comb or brush and pet shampoo
  • Puppy training pads for house training a new puppy
  • Litter box and kitty litter for housetraining a new kitten
  • Scratching post or scratch box for a cat
  • Pet toys and/or chew toys for teething puppies
  • Name of a veterinarian
  • Pet stain cleaning and odor remover products
  • Nail clippers for a cat or dog
  • Flea and tick prevention treatment
  • Pettreats
  • Pet vitamin supplement(s). Check with your veterinarian to find out what other types of pet supplements and pet supplies you may need.

In addition to the list above, make sure to give your new pet lots of love and affection. This will help strengthen the bond between yourself and your new dog or cat and create a level of trust from which you can build on for training.

How to House Train a Puppy

House training a new puppy or dog should begin right away from the moment you bring your new pet home. Here are a few tips for how to house train your puppy:

  • Do not lock your puppy in your house or in a crate for too long. You want your puppy to have the ability to use the bathroom in the designated potty area, and, if they cannot access it, puppies may become confused as to where the designated area is. A general rule is to take your puppy's age in months and equate to number of hours. For example, if your puppy is 3 months old, you should not leave the puppy without access to the potty area for more than 3 hours.
  • Use puppy training pads when you must leave your puppy alone in the house or in a crate for too long. This will provide the puppy with a designated "safe" potty area when the actual potty area is not accessible.
  • Take your puppy outside at least once per hour when you are at home and awake. Observe your puppy to see if the hour is too long or too short and adjust accordingly. Use a consistent term and speak it aloud when you take your puppy outside to use the bathroom. This will help the puppy associate the word with using the bathroom. For example, say something like "Go potty" or "Good potty" as you are taking your puppy to the designated potty area.
  • When your puppy goes to the bathroom in the correct area, such as on a puppy training pad or in the designated potty area, give the puppy lots of praise and affection. This will help your puppy associate using the correct potty area with your love and affection.
  • When you think your puppy is ready and if you live in a home with a fenced yard, install a pet door. This will allow your puppy the freedom to go inside and outside as needed. Pet doors can also be used for cats.

How to House Train a Kitten

Most kittens will instinctually go to the bathroom in a litter box because they respond to the smell and texture of the litter. Place the kitten in the litter box a few times, and the kitten will usually begin using the litter box every time after. Older cats may need additional training if they have never been house trained.

Here are a few tips for how to train your kitten to use a litter box:

  • Place the cat litter box in an easy-to-access, but low-traffic area of your house. You want your kitten to locate the litter box easily, but you also want to kitten to feel some sense of privacy when using the litter box.
  • Do not move the litter box around once the kitten has learned where it is. At the time of initial training, consistency is important.
  • Kittens sometimes prefer not to use a litter box containing scented kitty litter because a kitten's sense of smell is more sensitive than an adult cat. If your kitten is reluctant to use the litter pan, switch to an unscented litter.
  • Regularly scoop the litter box and completely change litter about once every two weeks. Kitty litter is meant to absorb liquid, however it can only hold so much. Complete litter changes and scooping should be more frequent if you have more than one cat using the same litter box. Kittens and cats are very particular about using the bathroom in a dirty litter box and will often stop using the litter box if it has been too long since the last litter change.