Congratulations! You have just welcomed a new puppy into your life! Everything is new to you. You’re excited and nervous all at the same time and want to do what’s best for your precious pet. But with so many choices, how do you know what you really need? And which brands are worth buying? To make sure that your dog is cared for while you learn more about this extraordinary responsibility, I’ve put together my top 5 best puppy products. Every single item on this list has been tried and tested by myself and Lilly. Meaning you can stop searching and start enjoying your new puppy.
Have you heard about a dog toy called a KONG? If not, then you’re in for a treat, and so is your puppy. These fabulous toys are perfect for all ages, from puppy to extreme chewer. However, you must ensure you get the correct size and type for your new puppy.
These wonderful toys can be stuffed with all types of yummy treats to help keep your puppies brain and tongue busy, which will help with the chewing! As your puppy grows, you can even freeze a KONG to make the fun last even longer!
Lilly has had various KONGs throughout her life, and we love them. However, as with any toy, they aren’t indestructible. You’ll need to pay close attention to your pups KONG and check for any damage, and if there is any, stop using it.
You can find KONG products in most pet shops, and they should be able to help you find the correct size for your new puppy.
Red Dingo Collars
I’m a massive fan of Red Dingo, and they have so many different collar styles that you are spoilt for choice! I have way too many collars for Lilly from Red Dingo, and they wash beautifully.
What I also love about Red Dingo is you can get complete sets that match; these include the collar, lead, harness and even the ID tag too! There aren’t many high-quality brands that offer such a range and with such excellent quality!
I also love their unique buckle bone closure, made from high-quality plastic that is great for me as I’m allergic to nickel.
My go-to supplier for Red Dingo is Dapper Pets. The team there is accommodating, and I’ve always been super happy with their service.
To use or not to use a dog crate? It is often an area that divides dog owners. For me, I believe that every puppy should be crate trained. You don’t have to use it forever, but it can help you and your puppy.
Puppies are born in whelping pens, an area with walls to keep them safe. As they grow, they often still have some pen or sleeping area. It’s their space, and it should be a safe space where they can go to relax and sleep.
Also, you should consider what happens if you go on holiday, or your puppy needs the vets? Kennels and Vets Kennels can be pretty scary for a dog that has never been in a crate. Having worked at a veterinary practice, you could tell the dogs that had been crate trained to those that hadn’t. Those that had would happily go into their kennel area and sleep, whereas those that had never been in a crate would often get distressed and cry the practice down.
Having a crate will also give you peace of mind, as you know that your puppy can’t chew through cables, the sofa, the carpet, and so much more when you’re out. Trust me, if they can, they will, especially when they are teething!
If used correctly and with positive training, a crate really can be a fantastic aid in helping your puppy become an excellent companion. Lilly used her crate until she was 4 or 5 years old, we then took it down, and she sleeps on my bed now. However, due to her cruciate repair surgery, she had to be confined to a crate for seven weeks, only allowed out to eat, drink and go to the toilet. I can only imagine how distressing that would have been for her had she not been used to being in a crate.
When buying a crate, you’ll need to allow enough space for your puppy to stand up, turn around and move about a little. So I highly recommend buying a crate suitable for your puppy as a fully grown dog and not for their current size.
Please also remove your dog’s collar before they go into the crate!
I love vet bed. It’s a rug like dog bed that’s fantastic for puppies as it is easy to wash and dry, plus it’s not overly expensive! We have about five different vet bed designs, pretty much one for every room, and they are great for putting into the crate with your new puppy! Unfortunately, I regularly see new dog owners buying somewhat pricy beds for their new puppy. That’s great they are there to be spoilt rotten. However, it’s often the case that your new puppy will destroy that bed the second you’re out of sight!
Keep your nice expensive bed for when you can watch your pup and stop them from destroying it. Use a vet bed instead; trust me, it’s much cheaper to replace, and if your puppy has an accident, it’s far easier to clean and dry than a big ole bed!
I highly recommend Pet Life vet beds, and it’s the brand I use.
Grooming Brushes and a Professional Dog Groomer
This one is super important, especially for your poodles, doodles, bichons and long-haired breeds. I’d also say you should get a brush for your short-haired breeds, too, as they will shed and need grooming just like the above breeds.
I highly recommend speaking with your local professional dog groomer for every dog as soon as your puppy has had their 2nd vaccine. I say this because a professional dog groomer will help keep your dogs coat in excellent condition. They can also advise on shampoos and brushes and keep an eye on your pup’s health as they grow too.
Your dog groomer will notice things you may not and allow you to get help from a veterinary professional sooner if they see something concerning.
I put this in my top 5 best puppy products as there’s a whole host of products available for dog grooming. However, not all of them will be right for your puppy, and that’s where expert advice will be essential!
I highly recommend checking My Pet People for professional pet services such as dog walking, dog grooming and more!
I hope you found this blog post helpful and that your new adventure with your gorgeous new puppy is fantastic. If you liked this blog post, please consider sharing it with your friends.
Looking for something else to read? I suggest checking out the following blog posts:
Some of you may have heard about Leucillin, but I expect that most people haven’t. So what is it? Well, Leucillin is an antiseptic solution available in a 50ml dropper form or sprays from 150ml up to 500ml.
I’ve had Leucillin in my first aid box for as long as I can remember, pulling it out to deal with scrapes, cuts and minor wounds on Lilly but also myself; with an excellent effect, I won’t post photos of my injury as well they aren’t very nice to see.
So what makes Leucilin so great? Well, that’s something we will look at in more detail. Leucilin was the very first Hypochlorous based health, and skincare spray launched in 2011. It is the most potent skin neutral pH, non-toxic antiseptic solution available anywhere.
It is specially formulated for your animal’s health and skincare and has proven anti-bacterial, anti-viral and anti-fungal Technology. The spray contains the active ingredient Hypochlorous (HOCl); this is a naturally occurring chemical in the mammalian body produced by white blood cells.
Hypochlorous is one of the most effective and efficient biocides known to man. Whilst being safe, it is 300 times more effective than bleach and is almost instant in its effect, and unlike antibiotics, bacteria do not develop immunity to it.
That’s the scientific basis of Leucillin done, which is great but does it work? The simple answer is YES; it does. I’ve used it on some pretty nasty wounds on myself and Lilly, with fantastic success. I feel it is essential to say here that I am a qualified human and animal first aider and worked at a veterinary practice as an auxiliary nurse, so I’ve had a lot of wound management experience.
I recently used Leucillin Antiseptic Skincare to clean Lilly’s incision site after her Tibial Tuberosity Advancement surgery. Unfortunately, despite wearing a cone, Lilly managed to get around it and lick her incision open. She required daily cleaning, dressing and checks for infection for eight days! Leucillin is easy to use, you can spray it onto cotton wool or directly onto wounds to clean, and it doesn’t sting! Trust me; I’ve tried it on myself!
I honestly believe Leucillin helped reduce the infection risk for Lilly. Without it, cleaning would have been a bit more of a pain and having it in a handy spray bottle was helpful too! I have a fair few bottles stashed away as I love the stuff for humans, canines and equines, and I don’t think I’d ever stop using it.
Recently, tests were conducted looking at efficacy against Covid-19, and Leucillin was proven to be effective when used! You can read Leucillin official statement here. It is fascinating, and I think you should look at this in detail. It shouldn’t reduce your standard hygiene routines as advised by your local government.
Leucillin has a fantastic safety record and is competition safe for equines, as Leucillin contains no substances prohibited under the FEI, or Jockey Club banned chemicals for competition. You can read more about Leucillin on their website.
I wouldn’t be without Leucillin for human or animal first aid and use it in my groom room! This fantastic product is very cost-effective, at £4.99 to £14.99 for the largest size. I honestly believe everyone should have some!
Leucillin is, in my opinion, a must-have item in any first aid box! that is suitable for use on a wide range of animals. I can also say that Leucillin played a massive part in keeping my injury clean. I do recommend visiting the manufacturers’ website for further information.
If you love all things natural for your dog I recommend you take a look at our blog on Herbal Pet Supplies
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If you have a dog that destroys toys in minutes, it can be a nightmare to find toys that last. Now I’ll be honest Lilly isn’t the destructive type now that she is older, however, when she was a pup, a cuddly toy didn’t stand a chance! This is when I started looking for some truly tough toys. I was recommended the Tuffy range and after some research, I settled on the Tuffy Ultimate Bone.
VIP Products have been designing and manufacturing high-quality pet products since 1999. They understood there was a need for stronger, tougher and safer dog toys. Enter Tuffy Toys, which are considered the strongest and toughest soft dog toy on the market!
In a hurry? Here’s what you need to know…
The Tuffy’s Ultimate Bone is rages 9 on the Tuffy Scale
It features 3 squeakers.
Available in multiple colors.
Both me and Lilly think it’s well worth buying!
Please note it isn’t indestructible, once damaged it shouldn’t be used! Safety first!
The Tuffy Scale
Many of the Tuffy toys come with a number attached to them, this number denotes the ‘toughness’ of the toy in question. The Tuffy Ultimate Bone is rated 9 out of 10 on the Tuffy scale. Which is one of the reasons I chose it.
The Ultimate Bone
I purchased our current version of the Ultimate Bone in May 2017, as you can see by the photos below, it’s been very well used!
** Lilly is no longer using this toy. Once damaged any toy should be removed from your dog’s possession.**
We purchased a replacement Ultimate Bone in October 2018, which we think is exceptional value for money and the replacement is still going! Lilly loves to play tug and fetch with her Ultimate Bone on a daily basis, it really is one of her favourite toys.
As with any toy the Tuffy Ultimate Bone is not indestructible. It is your responsibility to ensure that the toy is removed from your dog’s possession should it become damaged.
The Ultimate Bone is made up of 3 layers of material: 1. A layer of soft fleece on the outside 2. A layer of industrial grade luggage material on the inside 3. A layer of plastic coating on the inside
All these material layers are sewn together multiple times, there are 2 rows of cross stitching and 2 rows of linear stitching. The Ultimate Bone has an additional black trim helping to make a super strong toy!
If your dog loves squeakers then they’ll love the Ultimate Bone as it has three!
I’m sure you’ll be pleased to hear that the Ultimate Bone is machine washable and it floats too!
I’ve not tested these two features as Lilly doesn’t take her Ultimate Bone outdoors.
Colors & Sizing
The Ultimate Bone comes in three colors: – Red – Blue – Pink The Ultimate Bone is available in one size only.
I’ll be honest if you’re looking for cheap the Tuffy Ultimate Bone certainly isn’t at £13! However, if you consider how much you’re spending on ‘cheaper’ toys it’ll probably add up to far more.
Also if you take my example of the original purchase of May 2017 to October 2018 and divide the cost of £13 by 17 months you’ll end up with a cost of £0.76 a month!! That’s outstanding value for money in my opinion.
The Tuffy Ultimate Bone certainly is a favourite and we do feel it is a tough toy. However, as we said previously it isn’t indestructible so please supervise your dog and frequently check the Ultimate Bone for damage.
We are impressed by the longevity of the Ultimate Bone and will certainly be looking at some of the other toys in the range. Whilst the Tuffy Ultimate Bone isn’t the cheapest of toys we do feel it’s worth the price.
If you’d like to purchase a Tuffy’s Ultimate Bone I bought mine from the lovely folks at Dapper Pets in the UK but it can be purchased on Amazon.
Spring is almost here and I wanted to help you to Discover the Top 4 Products for Spring. There’s a bit of a mix here so there should be something for everyone!
Hownd: Yup You Stink Shampoo
It would only be right for me to start this with shampoo, just because winter is on its way out it certainly doesn’t mean you won’t need to bath your dog. Now if your dog is anything like Lilly, she’ll always find something dirty, smelly or dead to roll in!
Hownd has created a wide range of Cruelty-Free shampoos, the bottle in my photograph is the Professional 5 litre jug, as used by Professional Dog Groomers, you can get them in retail 250ml bottles for use at home. I have the following scents that I use at the salon:
Yup You Stink – for dogs that are super muddy or a little pungent!
Got an Itch – for dogs with sensitive skin, dandruff or a dull coat.
Keep Calm – used with dogs that are maybe a little nervous.
Miracle White & Bright – for helping get those beautiful white coats nice and bright, naturally!
I use these shampoos year round because I’m very keen to ensure I use natural, cruelty free products on the dogs I work with and if I wouldn’t use it on Lilly it won’t ever be used in my groom room.
Herbal Pet Supplies: No More Bites
This is a hot topic of discussion year round but as Spring arrives the risk increases for flea and tick infestation. As such I use Herbal Pet Supplies: No More Bites, this is because it is a natural repellent for both fleas and ticks. This fantastic preventative can be used alongside veterinary flea and tick control, however, I personally just use Herbal Pet Supplies No More Bites as my flea and tick control for Lilly and have done for some time.
Herbal Pet Supplies: Fresh Orange Hand Cleanser
This is definitely one for the humans more than the pets! My hands spend so much time being washed and when I worked in the vets harsh chemicals too. It’s so nice to be able to use this beautiful, chemical free hand cleanser! I take it with me on walks just in case the bag splits or for sticky sweet moments! I love how it smells and it doesn’t dry my hands out or make them sore!
Herbal Pet Supplies: Eco-Cleaner
This product is a MUST have, it’s totally chemical free, safe to use in all areas of your home. From cleaning the toilet to cleaning your windows it’s got you covered! I’ve found the eco-cleaner to be much kinder on my hands whilst also being super effective at cleaning all area’s of my home, including the washing machine! I’m not the only one who absolutely loves the eco-cleaner range, you only have to search for Herbal Pet Supplies Eco-Cleaner to see the amount of reviews and times it sells out! The scents of this fantastic product change with the seasons and that’s fantastic because you’ll never get bored!
KONG: Zoom Groom Brush
Those of you with short haired breeds will be no strangers to shedding fur. I’m regularly asked about what brush I recommend to help with this in-between professional grooming appointments. For me the KONG Zoom Groom is the only brush you need for a short coat, if used correctly you can get an astonishing amount of dead coat removed. As this brush is rubber you can use it in the bath or on a dry coat, I always recommend using it on a clean, dry coat for the best results.
I hope you find some of these products useful not only for your dog but also for yourself. I’ve purchased all of the items mentioned here and I’ve not been paid to include them in this post. Here’s some links for you to be able to find some of the products mentioned in the post.
If you’re anything like me then finding the perfect harness for your dog, is overwhelming. With so much choice, conflicting feedback and the concern of your dog backing out of their harness on a busy road it’s no wonder we’re confused and overwhelmed!
The Julius K9 IDC Powerharness has had a massive amount of hype, but does it live up to its expectations? I personally bought the Julius K9 IDC Powerharness for Lilly, my Labrador back in 2016, and I want to share my experience with this harness.
In a hurry? Here’s what you need to know….
The Julius K9 IDC Powerharness is available in sizes Baby to Size 4 and will fit most breeds (more info on sizes here).
Super customisable – you can purchase your own Glow in the Dark Velcro labels
Julius K9 Harnesses have been used by the Police and Military
For the purpose of this review I’ll be looking at the IDC Powerharness only, there are other styles available.
The IDC Powerharness is a shaped top piece that sits on your dogs back think of a saddle type shape. It follows the shape of your dog and features two straps one that goes around our dogs rib area and another that goes around the front just above the shoulders but below the throat see image below.
I purchased the IDC Powerharness in red because it’s one of my favourite colours and Lilly was wearing a red collar at the time. Though it does come in 20+ colors or designs including the GB Flag and US Flag to name a few.
If that’s not enough personalization the IDC Powerharness comes with two Velcro glow in the dark patches that can be customised with your dogs name or a message of your choice. Though these do cost extra depending on size and whether your message is bespoke or ready made.
Julius K9 IDC Powerharness: Materials
The IDC Powerharness is made in Germany and uses OEKO-TEX anti allergenic lining which makes it friendly to both human and canine skin! Unfortunately, they don’t disclose a full materials list so I cannot go into much detail on this. However, the D ring featured on the back of the harness is super strong and honestly is one of the best D rings I’ve seen on a harness!
Julius K9 IDC Powerharness: Key Features
One of the features that drew me to the IDC Powerharness was the glow in the dark patches and general reflective properties. Mostly for the fall and winter walks which are almost always in the dark. Surprisingly the glow in the dark patches are really effective and only need to be in a well lit environment for a short time to work! The reflective aspect is built into the harness itself with reflective top stitching around the main body section and a reflective strip on the chest strap.
If you need more visibility then you can also add further lights via loops near the handle and above where the side bags would attach. These are an add on and would be an extra cost. I personally haven’t used this option so cannot comment further.
Built in Handle
Another brilliant feature that’s super helpful for me and Lilly as we often walk the local mountains, which means getting over a number of stiles. The handle is really handy for helping Lilly get over safely especially when there’s cattle or sheep roaming and Lilly has to be on lead! It’s also really handy for socialization as you can hold your dog in the sit position and encourage good social behaviour without jumping up etc. For security there is a small security tab that holds the handle down when not in use.
If your going on a long walk or need your dog to carry some supplies then the IDC Powerharness does have to option to attach two side bags. These are an add on and come at an extra cost, I personally haven’t used these so I cannot comment on them.
How does it wash?
We’ve had the IDC Powerharness now for nearly 4 years and in that time its walked mountains, been rolled in multiple dead and smelly substances and done its fair share of mud surfing! I’m pleased to say that it has held up really well! All the photos on this blog are of our actual harness which is why there are no tags attached. I tend to just pop it in the sink and scrub away and I’ll be honest it does come up well. It dries pretty quick too which is always an added bonus. I advise that you always follow the manufacturer’s care instructions which are included on the label stitched into the harness.
Is it Value for Money?
When I ordered the IDC Powerharness back in 2016 it was £40 including shipping and tax for the size 2 harness, with no optional extras. When you sit down and spread that cost over the time I’ve had the harness it works out at £10 a year, which is nothing really! The harness is still in fantastic condition and is really hard wearing so I’d definitely consider getting another if I needed to.
I’ve read that this type of harness limits my dogs movements, is that true?
This is a touchy area to be honest and for a while I did stop using my IDC Powerharness due to this concern. However, I have since started using it again after reading important literature which has studied this claim in depth. I would suggest you look at this data yourself here.
If you were to ask me would I purchase the Julius K9 IDC Powerharness again, I would have to really think about it. Not because there’s anything wrong with it, but because I’ve become a bit of a harness hoarder. However, if I didn’t have another harness I would definitely purchase another. The handle is super useful and the reflective and glow in the dark properties are perfect for walks in the dark or poor conditions.
So I do think one of the best on the market, though please be cautious there are some pretty convincing fakes on the internet. I highly recommend you purchase from a reliable retailer!
Claire, her family and her fantastic Facebook Admins work flat out pretty much 7 days a week! They spend hours upon hours answering customer queries, as well as bottling and creating their products, before picking and packing the thousands of orders received every day!
My initial order
I initially purchased some Silver Cream and pH Tonic as Lilly was having some issues, the pH Tonic resolved Lilly’s urinary issues within 5 days! Since our first venture into the world of Herbal Pet Supplies, it’s safe to say we have become big fans of the entire range!
As for the Silver Cream it has become a favourite in the house for both humans and canines alike! It’s proven to be fantastic on minor wounds but also fantastic for helping my Diabetic mum with her hands, as they split quite badly as she works in a frozen food store.
Silver has been used for centuries as a highly effective anti-bacterial solution and it won’t hurt your pet if they lick it!
One of their best selling products are the Eco Cleaners, these Cleaners along with all of Herbal Pet Supplies products are cruelty free, pet friendly and all natural. The Eco Cleaners have seasonal scents which sell out almost instantly when loaded onto the website! We have been lucky enough to get a few to sell but even we are limited on stock!
We have personally used the Eco Cleaner in the drum of our washing machine on a hot wash to ensure the drum was super clean, it literally gleamed and we knew there was no nasties to ruin clothing on the next wash, plus it smelt amazing! Last weekend we cleaned the windows inside and out which left a stunning streak free finish, which we’ve not been able to get with some of the leading window cleaner sprays.
You can also put 20 to 30ml in a bucket of water to mop your flooring, or simply use neat to get out stubborn stains or marks!
No Rinse Hand Cleanser
If you’re anything like me you usually have a bottle of alcohol gel stashed in your handbag. Having worked in a veterinary practice my hands have always taken a battering from antibacterial scrubs being used multiple times a day.
Which is why I was super excited when Herbal Pet Supplies launched their No Rinse Hand Cleanser, this fantastic bottle of lushness has meant I can clean my hands anywhere without worrying how dry my hands will become!
It’s also perfect to take on dog walks should the worst happen and a poo bag breaks! Grim I know but it does happen!
Speaking of unwanted guests none of us want to deal with a flea or worm infestation, they’re super annoying, difficult to completely get rid of and are completely preventable! We are using a few products ourselves with excellent results they are:
No More Bites 100ml – a few drops on the back of the neck weekly to act as a preventative for fleas and ticks 100ml per dog per year approx. – £13.20
No More Bites Shampoo 500ml – can be used along side the No More Bites drops to help keep unwanted visitors away – £12.00
Tummy Tincture 100ml – Natural intestinal support, give 1 pipettes full into mouth or food monthly ( for young pups or smaller pets give half a pipettes). Each bottle contains approx. 110 pipettes! -£19.80
Bless You Shampoo
As a Professional Dog Groomer I’m often asked about the best shampoos for various coat types, I’ve always preferred natural and this is why we love Herbal Pet Supplies Bless You Shampoo.
It comes in various scents and is suitable for all coat types, not to mention they smell fantastic! We really believe that the Bless You Shampoo is well worth the money and is better value for money at only £10 for 500ml!
I think it’s safe to say that we love the Herbal Pet Supplies range and can’t wait to see all the new products that Claire and her team make!
** I have purchased many items from Herbal Pet Supplies and have not been paid in cash or products to write this post.**