The links provided below are for your own benefit, because we like to share exactly what has worked well for us. None of the links are affiliate links, and we do not receive compensation for any of our recommendations.
Of course one of the very first things we would like all of our puppy parents to invest in is Puppy Culture. It is more than just rearing and training puppies. It truly is a way of life. We have seen the difference in our program and with others. It is absolutely one of the best things we’ve ever done with Fourpines Cavaliers. Here is a link for “The Bundle for Puppy Owners” https://shoppuppyculture.com/collections/dvd-bundles/products/essentials-for-all-puppy-owners-bundle It is not just for young puppies, under 12 weeks, the knowledge and information is for ALL dog owners. It comes with the original 4 DISC Set – 5 hours 17 minutes, Attention is the mother of all behaviors a 2 Disc set, an exercise booklet and 2 PC clickers. I can not recommend it enough.
If you’re only able to commit to trying puppy culture and want to see what its about, I’d recommend “Attention is the Mother of All Behaviors” https://shoppuppyculture.com/collections/buy-dvds/products/demand-to-win-puppies-attention-is-the-mother-of-all-behaviors Two episodes included – 99 minutes. “In part one of this video, our nine week old puppies demonstrate how to teach the two core concepts that attention is a behavior, and that distractions are cues for attention. In part two, filmed one week later, the puppies demonstrate advanced distraction work and specialized distraction exercises for different venues, including switching between “show” and “obedience” modes, and foundation for attention heeling. While the lessons in the video are demonstrated by very young puppies, the protocols are the same as those in Jane Killion’s extremely popular “Attention as a Behavior” seminar and are perfect for dogs of all ages.” – Jane Killion
So that is absolutely the very first thing id recommend to new puppy parents. Whether you have dogs or a Fourpines puppy will be your very first canine addition it is for you.
1. FOOD – All of our CKCS are on a “raw” food diet. Regardless of age. If for some reason, traveling, vacationing, showing/attending AKC events, we are not able to feed the RAW food we prepare, we feed them Hollistic Select Grainfree. We like the Grainfree Adult and Puppy Health Salmon and Anchovy. We also feed Holistic Select Grainfree Puppy to our puppies that will be going to homes where they WILL NOT, for a variety of reasons, be on the biologically appropriate raw meat and bones diet. All other puppies will be weaned onto raw food. <see “Feeding Fourpines Cavaliers” for more information on weaning puppies and what our dogs eat. Holistic Select is a high quality, natural food that is corn, wheat, soy and by-product free. Holistic Select is proudly MADE IN THE USA and they give back to so many wonderful organizations. You can read about them here https://www.holisticselect.com/wellpet-foundation.aspx I will provide you with a small bag of the food your puppy has been eating IF he/she is to be given dry kibble at his/her new home. You may go here https://www.holisticselect.com/recipes.aspx?pet=dog#category5 for nutritional information. We order ours online through Amazon, Chevys, Wags or PetFoodDirect. Check out this link to see the many many articles & features from newspapers, magazines, television and the Internet that have featured Holistic Select® and their product line. https://www.holisticselect.com/press.aspx
If you choose to feed any other kibble after taking your new puppy home, please mix the two foods together and switch over very slowly. Adding a little more of the “new kibble” each day. Remember it is best to feed the highest quality manufactured dog food available, if this is what you choose to feed. Corn, wheat, soy, and by-products are known to cause health problems in dogs as does table scrapes. Our Cavaliers NEVER get table scraps.
2. TRAINING TREATS – It is not necessary to waste money on unhealthy commercial treats, full of preservatives and junk, filler, ingredients. Try bits of sliced or string cheese or diced cooked chicken breast. Our Cavaliers also love dried liver or other “jerky” type foods. They come in very handy when you don’t have access to a fridge to. Your dog, his waistline and most importantly will love you for it. We love all shapes, styles and sizes of Kongs also. We always choose the small to medium ones of course. Here’s a handy “kong by age” recommendation https://www.kongcompany.com/101/by-age/ “The Kong People” have evolved into so much more than just the little red rubber fillable kongs. They now have collars, beds, interactive toys, antlers and so much more. There is also a neat recipe section on their web-site https://www.kongcompany.com/recipes/
3. CRATE – Your full grown Cavalier will need a medium size crate approximately 24 inches long x 18 wide x 21 inches high. It has a real advantage to purchase a crate with a panel included to section off the crate so it is smaller at first. Another option would be to buy one small puppy crate and one larger adult crate, but our favorite metal crate is this one. It is just a basic dog crate that primarily stays at home. http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=midwest+life+stages+folding+metal+dog+crate .
If you prefer a plastic “carrier” style crate we recommend this one https://www.amazon.com/Petmate-24-Inch-Kennel-Metallic-Coffee/dp/B0062JFGM0/ref=redir_mobile_desktop?_encoding=UTF8&psc=1&ref_=psdcmw_2975401011_t1_B008AGV65O&th=1
Now if I were going to splurge (I use splurge loosely, they’re only about $25.00) or if I was planning to travel much I would probably buy a “several in one” crate/carrier. One that had wheels for pulling, one that had straps for carrying my dog on my back and a handle for carrying by my side. Like this one. Boy would one of these make getting through an airport easy with a dog! And kids! And bags! And paperwork! AND AND AND https://www.amazon.com/Giantex-Rolling-Carrier-Airline-Luggage/dp/B01N9Z8YPD/ref=sr_1_9?ie=UTF8&qid=1505247372&sr=8-9&keywords=rolling+backpack+dog+carrier
4. CRATE PAD/BEDDING – You will also need a crate pad. We like these http://www.amazon.com/dp/B001ATDOE4/ref=twister_B001O5CCJC?_encoding=UTF8&psc=1 They are soft, durable, moisture wicking and machine washable.
5. Flying – If you will be meeting us at DFW airport to pick up your puppy, you will have to have an airline approved pet Sherpa Bag –http://www.amazon.com/Sherpa-Original-Deluxe-Carrier-Medium/dp/B000FLETX8/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1461689455&sr=8-1&keywords=sherpa+deluxe+pet+carrier to carry the puppy onto the plane with you. These are good quality and come in several color options.
6. FOOD AND WATER BOWLS – We recommend stainless steel food and water bowls, because they can be sanitized in the dishwasher. We recommend having at least two sets so that they can be washed frequently. These bowls http://www.amazon.com/Our-Pets-2040011381-Durapet-Non-Tip/dp/B005146OG4/ref=sr_1_5?ie=UTF8&qid=1461689847&sr=8-5&keywords=our+pets+durapet+dog+bowl are great because they are slip proof & don’t turn over as easy. If you really want to spoil your new baby (like we do) nothing beats these spaniel bowls. http://www.spanielbowls.com/www.spanielbowls.com/Welcome.html Especially when their older and their ears are really long. Not only do they keep their ears prettier, they are much more sanitary, keeping them drier/cleaner. We have 2 of these and wish we had a few more. They are amazing.
7. SMALL COLLAR AND LEASH – We prefer you use embroidered collars like these https://www.etsy.com/listing/237585344/personalized-embroidered-dog-collar?ga_order=most_relevant&ga_search_type=all&ga_view_type=gallery&ga_search_query=embroidered dog collar&ref=sc_gallery_3&plkey=5251f48b8aa1b262ecb2c02c987b133d91becdf9:237585344 because often times when dogs get loose, they lose their ID tags in the process. An embroidered collar can have your phone number right on it, and if purchased on-line from 1 of these amazing USA home based companies, costs about the same or even less than a plain collar in a pet store. Be sure to get a leash without a large buckle that might hit the puppy in the face.
8. ENGRAVED TAG – Even though your dog may have an embroidered collar, he will still need “dog tags.” He will need to have his rabies tag on at all times and his emergency tag with names, phone number, possibly vet info and/or address. We highly recommend flat collar stainless steel tags from boomerangtags.com https://www.boomerangtags.com/?utm_source=bing&utm_medium=cpc&utm_campaign=Boomerang%2520Tags%2520-%2520Branding%2520-%2520JumpFly&utm_term=boomerang%2520tags&utm_content=Boomerang%2520Tags These tags last forever. You will still have this tag long after your dog has gone to doggy heaven. They are deeply engraved on actual stainless steel instead of very lightly engraved on aluminum or plastic. Also, flat tags don’t jingle, don’t fall off, and can’t catch on something causing a strangulation danger.
9. TOYS – We try to always find our cavaliers “unstuffed” dog toys. They have them at most Wal-Mart and Targets, large chain feed stores and all pet stores. They’re the stuffed animal all dogs love without the stuff. We also like fleece ropes, and various squeaky toys. Cavaliers seem to love things that squeak. We are careful to watch our dogs and throw away any toys that start to show signs of damage. Some of our cavaliers like the sound and excitement of the crinkling empty water bottle. I WOULD NOT recommend a empty water bottle without a toy “cover.” These are also at most stores where animal products are sold. We used to give our dogs various kinds of animal antlers, but some experts say they can chip or break teeth, so we’ve taken them away and no longer recommend them.
10. EXERCISE PEN – This should be up way above #10 on my list. An exercise pen is so extremely important to me. We keep at least a small 1 up 365 days a year. It serves so many purposes. From potty training to staying off furniture to keeping them safe in undesirable situation. Course we have several cavaliers, but I can’t imagine not having a safe and secure area to put a dog or 2 in an instant. We love the North States company. There products are a little pricey, but you will only have to buy one, one time for the life of your dog. You also can take them when you travel to grandmas, go to the park with the kids, etc. To me an exercise pen is a must! We like this one
http://www.hayneedle.com/product/northstates3in1metalsuperyardplaypen.cfm and this one
http://www.amazon.com/MidWest-Exercise-Door-24-Inch-Gold/dp/B0002AT2IE/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1462454803&sr=8-1-spons&keywords=midwest+exercise+pen&psc=1 You NEVER want a gate or play yard with horizontal bars or diamond shaped that little paws will learn quickly to climb, and then you will have a big problem on your hands.
11. SAFETY GATE – If you have stairs, you may consider getting a gate to block them off while the puppy is too young to understand heights and so small, they will fit through even the tiniest opening you couldn’t imagine them fitting through. We’ve heard of far too many tragic, and/or extremely costly, stories of small puppies running straight trough stair railings. Again we love the great quality and durability of North States. They are strong and sturdy and last forever. Remember do not get a gate or play yard with horizontal bars or diamond shapes. Your puppy will inevitably learn to climb things and escape.
12. GROOMING SUPPLIES – You’ll want a small pin brush, metal comb, and slicker brush. Our show dogs get brushed daily to prevent mattes and keep their coats in show quality, but when ours are not showing and your pet can probably be brushed weekly. We like the Isle of Dogs line of shampoos and conditioners. If you prefer to buy something in a pet store, we recommend choosing as natural/organic of a product as possible that is dye and fragrance free to hopefully prevent any allergy issues in your puppy. We bathe weekly if we’re maintaining a show coat, but monthly or as needed for maintenance cleanliness. You’ll also need a tool for trimming nails. We prefer to use a Dremel to file the nails, but guillotine style clippers work as well. If you’ve never clipped a puppy or dogs nails before, please ask your vet or an animal professional to show you where to clip.
13. WASTE BAGS FOR WALKS – There are many options, but cheap sandwich bags from a dollar store work as good as anything. Please be kind and respectful to the public and ALWAYS pick up your pets waste.
14. PUPPY TRAINING CLASS – You could contact your local AKC Cavalier Specialty Club and ask about recommended trainers in your area. Or look for local small businesses or independent trainers who have a lot of experience and knowledge. Another option is to sign up for a puppy class at a large chain pet store, like PetSmart. We have used all the above and have had success with each. The expertise of these positive training professionals is immeasurable! If you only do one, 6 week course, it will be worth it. I’ve heard it said more than once “Shelters are bursting at the seams because people give up on an untrained dog.” Do yourself and your new puppy a favor, get it trained. Have someone teach you how to teach your new puppy, the tools it needs for a long and enjoyable life together.
THESE ARE NOT PAID ADVERTISEMENTS – THESE ITEMS ARE WHAT WE PERSONALLY USE AT FOURPINES CAVALIERS