Anyone with a dog understands the overwhelming feeling of having too many pet products thrown at you. With things constantly changing, it can be hard to keep up and determine exactly what you need for your dog. The following six tools are must-haves for any dog owner.
A crate is a necessary tool for keeping your dog safe and out of trouble. A crate-trained dog will often return to his crate to relax in a quiet, secure place. Even more importantly, if there is ever an emergency or strange situation where your dog needs to be crated, you will avoid a potentially stressful experience. A dog should never feel cramped—a properly-sized crate should be big enough for the dog to easily stand up, turn around, and change position.
Clicker training is an extremely effective method for positive reinforcement training. If you like your dog’s specific action, you ‘click’ your clicker to communicate your pleasure. After the click, your dog receives a treat or desirable object. The clicker allows you to reinforce a precise moment, rather than struggle to give your dog a perfectly timed treat.
If you are using treats as reinforcement for clicker training, a treat bag is a must. Rather than fumbling around to pull a single treat out of your hand or dig treat crumbs out of your pocket, a treat bag will keep treats easily accessible. Treat bags are easily attached to pants or a belt loop with a Velcro strap or clip. Many even have an extra pocket to keep your keys or credit card.
Aside from a crate, baby gates are a great way to keep dogs in or out of certain rooms or prevent them from going up or down the stairs. While baby gates can be easy for some dogs to jump, there are gates made specifically for dogs of all sizes. Many gates can even be styled to match your current home décor!
Kongs and other food dispensing toys will keep your dog busy and tire the mind. If your dog eats too quickly, simply stuff his food in the Kong (maybe mix with some wet food and freeze) and you have a challenging activity to slow your speedy eater. Better yet, get a variety of food dispensing and puzzle toys to mix up the challenge on a daily or weekly basis.
Collapsible Water Bowl
On average, dogs should be drinking approximately an ounce of water per pound of body weight. If you are out and about with your pup walking or running dog-friendly errands, it’s easy to forget the water. Either you try and create a bowl out of your available supplies or you decide to just wait until you get home. A collapsible water bowl can easily be stashed in your car door or bag to easily provide water on-the-go.
What are your must-have tools for dogs?
Kelsie McKenzie is the owner and fur-covered girl behind the scenes of It's Dog or Nothing, a resource for ‘all things Pyrenees.’ She currently lives near Seattle with her Air Force husband and two Great Pyrenees, Mauja and Atka. Kelsie is also a content creator, social media manager, and an avid animal lover.
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