Puppy Planning Checklist

We’re planning to add a new puppy to our household. Needless to say, it’s been over three years since the last time I brought a puppy home. And it’s been over 20 years since I brought home a puppy to a household that already had one or more dogs in it. I went looking for a checklist of things to do to prepare for this situation, and those I found were so minimal as to be useless. So I thought as I compile my own, I would share it with others who might find themselves in the same spot.

I intend to come back and update this post with whether or not the items on this list were useful to me. I will probably add to the list as I think of things. My situation is somewhat unique, so many things on this list will not apply to your situation. Any additions/suggestions appreciated.

Things to buy, get out of storage, or clean

  • Crate for sleeping
  • Long-term confinement supplies (I may have a post on this later)
  • A generous supply of treats
  • Puppy toys, including puppy Kongs for stuffing
  • The water bowls (need to be sterilized)
  • Leash, collar and harness
  • Nature’s miracle wipes and solution
  • Baby gates and ex pens (in addition to long term confinement ones)
  • White boards to keep up with two dogs’ training
  • Puppy Culture DVDs
  • DVD player for watching DVDs on plane to pick up puppy
  • Head halter for both dogs
  • Fresh batteries for Treat and Train remote

Existing dog’s training

  • Brush up on stationing/hot zone
  • Work with other animals in household more (cats, goats) so he gets used to not being the center of attention
  • Work on gentle and controlled behaviors
  • Condition to head halter


  • Get used to getting up earlier (work on karate during extra time?)
  • Plan introduction
  • Watch Recallers DVD again and Puppy Culture DVDs (note you get the DVD after your first year of Recallers–this is not something you can buy)
  • Hire a Dog Walker
  • Book time off
  • Book Well puppy visit with vet


The biggest thing I wish I’d done was to set up the long-term confinement area and gradually work up to having a lot of high-value toys in there. Having a bunch of amazing toys and chews he was not allowed to get to and also this bouncy squeaky thing was very difficult for Lackey. So my advice is if you have a very toy-motivated dog, prepare early. Maybe start with a bowl of kibble in there or an old toy they hardly glance at, and gradually add more and more value. If you have something squeaky that moves quickly or can be made to move quickly, desensitizing to that would probably be a good idea.

More Resources

I found these resources after I first wrote the post that are also useful if you have a new puppy

Growing up FDSA EBook

List of Husbandry Behaviors and Skills

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