Thursday, 9 April 2015

Mack's Puppy Products Haul

So chuffed here - I get to blog about 2 of my favourite things at the moment - puppies and shopping!    Prior to getting my little puppy a month or so ago (the chihuahua cross yorkie pictured above), I extensively researched what was out there on the pet products market, what was generally recommended for good puppy and dog care by the experts and dog owners on various dog/pet forums and finally, where the best bargains were to be found.  Here are some of the things I bought for my puppy and my thoughts on these products now that I have had a few weeks to try them!  Prices stated are as at April 2015.

Dog crate:  They look like a prison but I have read so much about the benefits of crate training your puppy.  Crate training helps with house training (as dogs don't like to soil their beds and will therefore learn to hold off going to toilet if they are trained to stay in their crates for short periods) and providing your dog with his/her own little sanctuary to feel safe in (dogs love their dens!).  I found that Pet Planet had superb prices for dog crates.  I got the Extra Small Barkshire Dog Crate for £11.99 (W50.8 x D33 x H38cm) and it is perfect for my little puppy.  The quality is just fine and I have no complaints about the crate.  It folds down nicely.  Puppy loves it.  I have covered it (as you can see in my "Puppy Palace" post).  

Soft toys:  My puppy loves her cute teddy and her squeaky hedgehog (pictured above).  She cuddles up to them when she sleeps.  After a few weeks of being chewed, thrown and slept on, the soft toys are holding up well - no frays and still in one piece.  The teddy is from Tesco (Noahs Maisie Mouse Plush Dog Toy, £5.99) and the hedgehog is from Pet Supermarket (Kyjen Mini Invincibles, £4.25).

More toys: These are the toys currently keeping my puppy entertained, sourced from Zooplus, Pet Planet, Pet Supermarket and The Range.  The small sized Kongs are a God-send (£3.95 for the softer blue Kong for puppies and £4.25 for the original red Kong from Pet Supermarket). There is a handy chart on the Pet Supermarket shop page for Kongs setting out which size Kong is best for each specific breed of dog.  I fill the Kongs up with her kibble and use a bit of liver paste or peanut butter to seal them, and my puppy is so happy!  I do not use the peanut butter too often due to high salt content - just an occasional treat!  I have discovered that anything that squeaks is a favourite with puppy, so she loves the Kong Air Dog Medium Squeaker Donut (£3.99 from The Range), Pop-Up Egg with Squeaker Dog Toy (£1.69 from Zooplus) and the squeaky hedgehog mentioned above from Pet Supermarket.  She also loves the Nylabone Regular Puppybone to chew on (£1.99 from The Range).

Grooming products - I love PetHead:  After my puppy was vaccinated, I gave her a bath with the I love PetHead Shampoo especially made for puppies with its no-tears formula.  I adore the bottle (huge bottle which I think will last ages) and the amazing orange-blossom smell.  It lathers well, cleans thoroughly and leaves puppy smelling gorgeous!   Once or twice a week, I use the Pet Head Poof! Magical Deodorising Spray and I think it is wonderful.  Two sprays and puppy smells fresh and pretty (again of orange-blossom).  The scent seems to last a good few hours.  There are other shampoos and deodorising sprays in the same range which I might like to try when she is older.  I will get some recommendations from the Groomer when I take puppy in a month or so for a puppy package pampering session.  I got the products from Pet Supermarket.  The Shampoo was £8.95 and the Deodorising Spray was £8.86.  They are not the cheapest (try VioVet for cheaper prices) but I had a 45% off Pet Supermarket discount voucher to spend at the time as I had to wait weeks for a previous order and wasn't updated.  Anyway, pleased with how Pet Supermarket customer services sorted it out in the end. 
The Petkin Pet Wipes are great for everyday cleaning of paws and leave puppy smelling fresh (from Pet Planet at £5.99 for 100 wipes) although someone told me that baby wipes are a much cheaper alternative. I need to research more about using baby wipes on a puppy before using or recommending them. 

The Perfect Care Microfibre Cloths from Zooplus (£2.69 each) are so handy and so effective at drying puppy quickly.  I have seen more expensive versions of quick-drying pet towels but these cheaper ones work well with my short-haired puppy!  I recommend having at least two on the go.  I have tested them against normal towels and they do dry puppy quicker.   Within 15 seconds, puppy is almost dry.

Finally, I bought a Kong Dog Zoom Groom brush from Pet Planet for £5.29.  Totally the wrong type of brush for my smooth-coated, short-haired puppy, I think!  The brush is almost as big as her!  I am using it for my cat though and she loves the massage at grooming time!

Clean up time and house training: Puppy uses a training pad holder (which takes 60x60cm training pads) but she does have the odd accident from time to time around the house and the Simple Solution Urine Destroyer (£4.79 from Pet Supermarket) and Keep it Clean spray in fragrant coconut (£2.89 from Pet Planet) are doing wonders to keep my house and puppy living area clean and smelling fresh.  I bought the Simple Solution Puppy Aid Spray (£3.46 from Pet Supermarket) to ensure that my puppy uses her training pads, but stopped using it after a few days once she clearly got the hang of going to toilet on the pads.  It is probably a product I would recommend if your puppy needs extra help with knowing where to go to toilet.  We are starting to take puppy outside regularly for toilet trips so hopefully puppy training pads will be a thing of the past in time to come!

These are just a few of the essential products I have bought for my puppy.  I have also bought  bedding (Pet Planet has a great range of bedding at excellent prices), and a collar, harness and lead  (I recommend Pets at Home and Jollyes for their excellent in-store customer service - they took their time to help me find the right-sized items for my puppy!).

Hope you find this helpful if you are buying for a precious puppy! Ok, here's one last cute puppy pic! 

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