There are few days that compare to the day a new puppy joins a household. If you have a friend or family member who is about to adopt a furry little housemate, you can join the fun by preparing a new puppy gift bag full of accessories for the wee one and his new parents.
Puppies love and need to play. It's an important part of growing up, learning to socialize and a wonderful way to bond with their humans and other furry housemates. Just as important is the need for appropriate, puppy-safe toys -- toys tough enough for rough play and the tiny, pin-like teeth in puppies' mouths. Purchase hard chew toys specifically marked as suitable for puppies. Plush toys are fine too -- and look cute in a gift bag or basket -- as long as the new human parents are aware that their pup must be supervised with plush toys, as they are easily torn apart and swallowed.
Soft blankets, pillows and beds are terrific puppy gifts. You may even consider using a new puppy bed as your "basket" and fill it up with smaller gift items. Shop for blankets and pillows in pretty colors and cute designs. Keep in mind that these items will need to be washed frequently, so colorfast, machine-washable pieces are a must.
No gift bag is complete without some delicious treats. As with toys, purchase treats designated for puppies, not adult dogs, that will meet the needs of sensitive tummies and rapidly growing little bodies. Look for small bags or canisters of crunchy cookies or chewy tidbits. Some pet supply stores offer fancy cookies decorated in canine-friendly icing and sprinkles. Add a few of these designer treats for extra sparkle. And for the health of the new puppy, purchase all-natural items free of artificial colors, flavors and preservatives.
New puppy parents require practical items to help their young charge learn and adjust. House-training items like wee-wee pads, carpet cleaners and disinfectants are always needed. Other practical items may include collars, leashes, nail clippers, brushes, flea combs, stainless steel bowls and cookie canisters. You may even consider including books on helping new pups adjust, dog health or basic dog training.
Every dog parent should have a fully-stocked canine first aid kit. These kits make superb gifts, especially for first-time puppy owners. You may purchase a premade kit, or put one together yourself. Important first aid items include bandaging materials, antiseptic wash or wipes, styptic sticks, eye and ear wash solutions, diphenhydramine for allergic reactions, cold and heat packs, a tick removal tool, scissors, tweezers, cotton balls, cotton swabs and disposable gloves.
Yvette Sajem has been a professional writer since 1995. Her work includes greeting cards and two children's books. A lifelong animal advocate, she is active in animal rescue and transport, and is particularly partial to senior and special needs animals.