Happy Wednesday! Dallas Walker is the real star of the show on my Instagram these days and when I show him on Stories, I always get the sweetest DM’s asking questions about all of his gear! So, I finally thought I’d compose a blog post on his favorites with links to purchase so all my readers that are puppy mamas, soon-t0-be puppy mamas, seasoned puppy mamas, puppy grandmama’s, aunties, etc….. or any other dog lover can pick some up for the beloved pup in their lives, too!
- A soft toy bin. Dallas loves his toys, and loves to be able to dig through his toy bin to find his favorite at any given time. I purchased one of these softer and flexible bins from Home Goods and its been perfect to hold everything and also be soft on his little head as he’s immersing himself in it. No snags from a wicker basket or something like that!
- A cute crate cover. Let’s be real, the wire crates are less than attractive. And also, they need some kind of covering so that pups truly get that ‘den’ experience while in it! When we first got Dallas, we were using old beach towels to cover the crate. But that look got old real quick in this decor obsessed mama’s home, and I also didn’t feel like they were providing enough air flow due to being so thick. So I searched high and low for a crate cover! There are so many cute crate covers from high-end home decor shops, but that just wasn’t in my budget. But I found this one from Petco, and it’s been perfect! You can’t beat the price point, it’s a lighter fabric that allows a little more breathing room, has zippers on the side if you want to open it up a bit more for more ventilation (like when we’re in the car), and it’s just plain cute and goes perfectly with our home decor!
- A self-cleaning dog brush. When deciding to get a Golden Retriever, we were well aware that our future would include an exorbitant amount of dog hair. Lots and lots of dog hair! Goldens are known to shed like crazy and it’s no joke. My mom literally vacuumed our home every single day with our golden pup Meggie growing up. So, I was prepared. Dallas is just starting to get his big boy coat but he’s already shedding! However, he still has a lot of puppy hair, especially in his more sensitive areas… so we’re sticking with a wire brush now (and will switch to a Furminator once he’s full-grown. If you have a dog that sheds… it’s a MUST! Trust me!). I love this one now because it’s simple but then you pop a button and the bristles retract and you can easily wipe off the hair that you’ve combed out. Not rocket science, but also… how genius is that?! I wish they made these for human hair brushes!
- A cute collar. Dog collars come in all shapes, sizes, and prices. There are so many cute ones out there but I didn’t want to invest in something too pricey as Dallas is growing like a weed and we have to loosen his collar on what feels like a daily basis! This one was such a cute and reasonable find and has held up surprisingly well thus far! Plus, it’s blue and white gingham, so…. duh!
- A cute harness. Dog harness’ are kinda ‘the thing’ right now and I can see why! We’re just starting adventures in walks as Dallas just completed his final series of puppy vaccines. Since he’s never been constrained, a harness has already been a huge helper in training him to walk forward without pulling! I also just couldn’t resist how cute this one is! There’s a ton of reflective fabric on it which is great for walks in the dark, and I love how it’s padded so it doesn’t dig into his little sweet chest! It also hooks on to the back which is nice… though it doesn’t help from him diving for twigs, leaves, wrappers…. or anything else in his path! But that’s something we hope to work on in puppy school!
- A gentle shampoo. We purchased this before we picked him up from the breeder! Right around the time when we got Dallas was when I was making the safer switch to Beautycounter, so you can best believe I was also being cautious about what products I was using for my pup, too! This one has minimal and safer ingredients which makes this puppy mama happy!
- THE duckie. Before we picked up Dallas to bring home, the breeder suggested bringing a toy to rub on Dallas’ brothers and sisters so the smells would come home with us and be a comfort. Sam decided the item to do this with HAD to be this duckie. He was so passionate about it (and it was so sweet) so I stepped back and watched him order it and do his thing. Turns out this is STILL one of Dallas’ favorite toys and when you hear him squeaking like crazy in the background of my Insta Stories or when you’re on the phone with me… that’s THE duckie! Haha!
- Antler chew. Like all puppies, Dallas has been teething like crazy! We are constantly disciplining him ‘no bites!’ and it becomes exhausting. When it felt like I had tried every type of bone, I discovered an all-natural antler at Home Goods. I gave it a try and guess what… it’s the ONLY thing he will chew for on longer than 2 minutes! Plus, he doesn’t get neurotic with it like he did with other chews (like bully sticks) and it’s strong enough that it doesn’t disintegrate quickly like many others. It’s certainly a safer option and I don’t worry about him with it like I do other rawhides. The antler chew has become a LIFE SAVER and truly… y’alls pups NEED one!
- Natural Flea & Tick Spray. When we first brought Dallas home, we started to discover ticks on him! Ugh, it was awful. And such a fluke! Our breeder was amazing and reputable and we scoured our yard for ticks so it was unexplainable. Our vet says that ticks can truly ‘fall out of the sky’ and once they replicate, it’s hard to get rid of them. Since Dallas was so young during this (only 8 weeks!), I was really concerned about using traditional flea and tick meds. I researched it a bunch and saw how many devastating side effects there can be with flea and tick meds and I just didn’t feel comfortable with it at this point in his life. So with a little research and Amazon Prime, I ordered this spray and covered Dallas and our home with it. Y’all… IT WORKED. It was amazing! I’ve been continuing to use it ever since and have not gone for the traditional meds yet. Of course this is ALL personal preference and every pup and puppy mama will have their own opinions and ways about doing things! But if you’re interested in a more natural approach to flea and tick prevention, I can’t say enough good things about this spray.
- An easy dog food container. With the way our house is set up, we keep Dallas’ food in the kitchen. I didn’t want a food container to scream “PET FOOD” and I also wanted it to be on wheels for easy cleaning around it. This one has been great! It’s not sealed to keep rodents out, so if you keep dog food in your garage I recommend this (I used this with my horse and it’s amazing at keeping food safe and sealed!).
And there you have it, puppy lovers! I hope these items help with your puppy endeavors, too! It’s certainly another world and can be overwhelming at times, so I find it always helpful to hear what’s working for everyone! Share some of your favorite puppy goodies in the comments below!
Have a happy hump day!
Photos of Dallas by: Natalie McMullin Photography