Havanese Puppy Kit List:
I will try to indicate what is optional and what I think is mandatory. Depending on how you decide to train your puppy different items may be needed. Remember this is only the way I do it, and my experience with raising new puppies - there are lots of ways to raise puppies, but this is a safe, practical way to start.
Must Have Items
Most of these items you will need on Day One or at least week one so it's a good idea to have them purchased before you pick up your puppy
A crate, food and water dispensers, leash and collar or harness, grooming tools (brush, comb, eye comb, nail clippers, ear cleaner, cotton balls, shampoo and conditioner, grooming spray, appropriate toys. traveling bag if needed wee pads, baby gravel for long trips. Please bring something to carry water in as you want to gently introduce your puppy to your water by slowing mixing with the water they have been given here.
Common medicine on hand, an X-Pen, airline travel bag, beds, car travel seats, crate pads, wee pads, treats, clicker, crate covers, litter box, crate fan
Description of Items:
Whether you crate train or not a crate is pretty much a must have. It makes the puppy feel safe, and it is good for car travel and visiting. A puppy who is happy in his crate can go anywhere. If you crate train you want the crate to only be big enough for the puppy to stand up and turn around in otherwise you give him a bathroom, dining room and bedroom in one crate - not good for crate training. Once the puppy is older you can increase the size of his crate to what you will have for all his life, this can be a good size crate that fits him, his toys and his food and water bowl in. Read Crate Training under the Training Hints section
There are a lot of crate choices, I'm not a huge fan of the plastic kennel, they get hot and they can give off fumes. They are sometimes necessary ie. airline travel but I prefer a study wire crate, with a square crate pad. Personal choice though, either will work. Fabric crates do not work for Havanese - they will chew or scratch through them.
You will need two crates for the lifetime of the puppy. A small puppy crate that will make the puppy feel secure and then at 4 months, or when the crate is obviously too small you will move to a permanent crate for the puppy.
I do recommend an inexpensive plastic crate (veri kennels) for the puppy crate - you can pick them up at Wal-Mart, Target, sometimes dollar stores carry them, and of course the major Pet department stores have them. Cheaper at Wal-Mart though.
Puppy Crate Size for a Havanese: Plastic crate - 19" long X 12.5" wide x 10" high. Anything close to this is fine
I use wire for the permanent Crate: I have used both Precession Pet Pens and Life Stages - both are good. HOWEVER if you think you will ever be shipping your dog cargo then you will need a plastic crate.
Permanent Crate Size: Wire Crate 24" long X 20 high X 17 wide. Anything this size or bigger is fine.
One crate with a divider in it so you can start small and then expand when puppy grows. I don't use these - I like the little puppies in a small plastic crate - it makes them feel secure, but many people have been successful with the expandable crate.
You can go crazy on crates - there are all sorts of wonderful looking crates now that look like furniture. Something for everyone's budget
Food and Water Dishes:
Prefer Raised stainless - Avoid plastic as they are porous and bacteria can accumulate. Raised are good for posture and keeping ears out of and less resistance to bacteria. I use water bottles just because they cause less staining to mouth area. I hang the water bottles off an X-pen or you can also buy a stand - optional.
Elevation height for full grown dog;
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Like all things doggie you can go crazy with price on food bowls too, and buy some really lovely bowls set in wood. The simple stainless Pet department stores sell - go on-line if you want the fanicer sets - or visit a dog show.
These water bottles hang on an x-pen or crate. I also use guinea pig bottles. Be careful some of the brands I find have a sharper drip stop than others so putt your finger on the drip stopper (usually a ball bearing) and make sure it is smooth. Pet department stores sell these
Collars and Leads or Harnesses
Stay away from the automatic pull leads, those thin leads that retract - they can badly cut puppies, and kids by the way. They are dangerous and to be avoided. Get a 12" lead and a collar that fits or a harness.. Many people have lost their puppies to collars that are too big - you should be able to get a finger between your dogs neck and collar but it should be tight - not a squeeze but tight. For new puppies collar should be an adustable type from 8" to generally 12". Harnesses should be the same from 8 1/2" to 12. Adjustable ones are critical. Do not buy the padded or neoprene harnesses that have to slip over the head or body - they are too hard to put on and they get outgrown very quickly.
I've never used harnesses but my owners have asked about them so I did some research and wow I'm a believer now. You need to get a harness that fits properly. I would probably still switch a dog to collar and lead for training when they are older but for puppies it appears harness is the way to go. I took this quote from one of my research sites.
| | Preparing a home for a new puppy takes planning. Most of us buy the essential items: food bowl, water bowl, bed/ crate, collar and leash. Please consider substituting a harness for the collar, for safety's sake .Almost all of the puppy training books teach us to housebreak our puppies by taking them for scheduled walks, which is good information, but seldom do the authors warn of the dangers which a collar poses to small necks. There is a basic physical reason why a harness, in either vest form, or one which looks like a collar with a few extra straps which fasten around the puppy or dog's chest, is safer for our tiny fur babies. Puppies and small breed dogs have extremely small and fragile necks, and when they are wearing collars, any traction we place on their leash pulls directly on their spinal cord, trachea and other vital structures. A properly sized harness, on the other hand, distributes the tension of an opposing force on the dog to its larger chest and shoulder muscles. Obviously, no dog should be dragged or otherwise abused in any way, but there may come a time when immediate and firm control of your leashed dog will be vital to its survival. Sudden pulling or jerking on the dog's neck in an emergency moment on leash can have tragic results.
There is an added benefit to the harness many can be used to secure your dog in the car as well.
Brushes and Combs and Nails
A small face comb: These can be hard to find and I find essential. I've had better luck getting them at dog shows so please let me know if you want me to pick up this item for you.
A comb with small and bigger teeth on the same comb. Sometimes called a greyhound comb. I have seen them in Pet Department Store and inexpensive is fine. Here are two versions of the same thing.
A metal pin brush with no balls on the end. I like the pins to be 27mm it goes through the coat. Make sure the cushion is not too soft - should not have a lot of give. Either shape is fine.
I don't use a slicker because I find they are too hard on show coat, BUT for the pet owner they are great for removing matts. Use a soft slicker brush there are many different sizes and shapes.
Ears and Eyes and Nails
I normally clip nails every time I bathe. A little at a time keeps nails the right lenght and if nails are black you don't have to worry about cutting too much if you do a little often.
This are my favorie type of clippers. You can easily see the front and the back of the nail when you are clipping. Clip to just above the quick (the blood vessil in the nail) Easy to see on white nails. On black nails clip to just above where the back of the nail naturally thickens.
You can use scissors or cat clippers when they are just puppies, but eventually you will have to master the nail clippers anyway. I use scissors on babies and then at about 5 months switch to clippers.
Bird scissors or cat clippers are great for babies, but then you need to switch to regular nail clippers around 4 months. There is only 1 nail clipper I like - it allows you to see the quick and the nail while you are cutting.
I use these on puppies - regular scissors are fine too these just have a groove in the blade for easier use. These are pretty much the same as cat nail clippers. Can only be used while the puppy is young though - as quite quickly the dog nail is too thick for these.
Make sure you buy some septic powder. It quickly stops the bleeding if you accidentally clip the quick of your dog. If you run out and have clipped to closely apply pressure with a tissue.
Ears and Eyes
Ears get cleaned weekly, more if you have a problem and notice scratching. Ears should be light light pink not rosy or red on the inside and should not feel hot. Use an ear cleaning solution and a cotton ball. Dogs ear drums curve so it is impossible to damage an eardrum with a cotton ball and your finger. Don't use Q tips in the ear drum. Make sure the cotton ball is saturated with the solution, not dry, and clean until there is no dark residue on the ball. If you notice a coffee grind look, or a dark waxy look clean daily until it is gone, if it continue (grinds) you probably have mites and off to the vet you go for a medication.
Eyes - keep the eye area clean - Hav's have lots of hair around the eyes and when they are teething, and even as their hair grows, it causes the eyes to run. Use your eye comb to comb out any sticky bits, and use a cotton ball or even a facecloth to wash the eye area. There are eye solutions you can use, if you really really care about staining, but just keeping them clean with a little shampoo and water is just fine. You can also buy commercial eye cleaning pads for cleaning under the eyes. I have not found any of them successful in removing stains but they are a convenient way to keep the eye area clean.
Shampoos and conditions:
You can really use any good quality pet shampoo and I strongly recommend not to use Human Products, they are not PH balanced for dogs.
Unfortunately Pet supermarket stores tend to carry very inexpensive low quality product. This is another area you can spend a little or a lot. The best option is if you live near an area where there are dog shows. Dog shows have a great variety of shampoo's and conditions at a reasonable price. On-line is a problem because of the weight of the product and shipping is expensive. If you have a upscale pet store they will have higher quality products. I recommend using a good quality pet shampoo. Your vet may also carry some products.
My personal choices: I use All Systems, Wahl, and Crystal White but All Systems has great products for all colours and varieties. I use a black for dark dogs and a white for my whites. I also use a super rich conditioner so I have a choice of using full strength for a deep conditioning when I need too and dilute it 3 to 1 for regular maintenance.
Always condition and rinse rinse rinse.
You should always brush your havanese with a grooming spray - a dry coat will break when brushed so use a conditioning spray when brushing the coat If you use a grooming spray with silicones you will have to wash your Havanese weekly as Silicone will break coat as the hair gets dirty. You can also just dilute your condition 5 to 1 and use as a grooming spray. There are some very nice grooming sprays that add fresh scent to your doggie coat. I'm particularly fond of a baby powder scent one I use.
For One puppy you need a litter box that is big enough for the puppy to turn around in comfortably. If you are leaving your puppy for 1/2 a day on a regular basis make sure it is big enough, Puppies will go elsewhere if the litter box gets overly soiled. I use a under the bed plastic container and just cut an opening in one end. You can line the litter box with newspaper, wee pads, or wood shavings. Wood shavings are good, they are non toxic, easy to clean up and absorb the moisture which helps keep your puppy's feet clean. Pine are less expensive than cheddar. Purina sells a dog litter, and you can use the recycled paper pellets as well, both of these are more expensive that shavings or paper. Check your labels if you use cat litter, some products have toxic ingredients if they are eaten, and puppies eat everything. Stay away from clumping litter, it can swell in the tummy and has some toxic ingredients if ingested. My recommendation, shavings, wee pads or paper :) Remember puppies eat anything so the recycled paper pellets I'm not a big fan of.
Two types of wee pad holders:
When the puppies start playing and tearing up their wee pads I like the wee pad holders. They work quite well.
One of my owners just found a new holder that actually doesn't even need a wee pad, and it is impossible for the puppies to get them out and tear them up. It looks great, I have also ordered one fro www.ugodog.com
I like to give the puppy room and protection when he is not in his crate so I use an exercise pen for the puppy. I put his crate, his toys, a litter box or wee pad area and food and water bowls right in the pen. This keeps him safe if I am away for more than a couple of hours and don't want him in his crate. It is also good when the puppy is potty trained, even if you don't use a litter box or wee pad, you still need to know that your puppy will be safe when you are away. Exercise Pens are also great for travel - your dog can be outside, but not tied up, you can take them to hotels, etc. They are very handy. I like the 2 foot or higher. The 2 foot you can still reach over.
We are feeding a mix of Natural Balance kibble and Eukunuba puppy. You will be provided with enough food for 7 days - the right amount of time to transfer your puppy to the food of your choice.
I only treat with Natural Balance rolls - they love them, and they are healthy.
These puppies will be wee pad trained - it is very helpful, you can use them in airport washrooms, when visiting guests etc. etc. If you are going to continue to use a litter box or wee pads pick up a big box. Go cheap I have not found quality makes any difference in these, and the sticky backs don't make any difference, the puppies tend to play with them if there is nothing else to play with.
No rubber or plastic please. Stuffies are great but check them continually for split seams etc. Nylabone is fantastic and the durable Kong's are also good. They love rope toys too.
Beds and soft stuff:
Up to you here, anything goes - blankets, towels, doughnut beds, crate pads - whatever you like. beds and crate pad can mat coat so I either use nothing or I use a satin finish crate pad, but hey they love a big comfy doughnut bed too.
You need lots and lots of this, and patience too