Mom Matters

10+ Best Gifts for Dogs— Even if it’s Your First Pet

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As a brand new pet-owner (she’s a labradoodle named Charlotte), I’m learning all of the must have gifts for new pups. There is the best dog bowl, best dog toy and most importantly the best dog bed. Since I’m just a newbie, I wanted to get the best advice from an expert, which is why I turned to Ellie Laks, Founder of The Gentle Barn Foundation, to find out the best gifts for the dog lover.

Q&A with Ellie Laks:

6 Dog Products Does Every Dog Lover Needs

1- Ceramic bowls for food and water that can’t be pushed around or tipped over, preferably with their name on it because that is adorable. 

2- A matching collar and leash. I would recommend a harness for less pulling on their trachea and more control.

3- At least two dog beds so that they can curl up in the bedroom and the living room.

4- High quality food, the fresher the better. The more money you spend making or buying fresh food for your dog, the less money you will spend at the vet, and the better quality of life you and your pet will have together. 

5- Small training treats to get their attention onto you, dog cookies just to say “I love you”, and chew bones to have something to work on and to keep their teeth clean.

6- Toys! Some dogs like to rip toys apart and need toys without stuffing, some love to fetch balls or play catch for exercise and sport, and others love to carry their teddy bears around with them. Get to know your dog and get them the toys they love.   

10+ Best Gifts for Dogs

Best Pet Subscription, BARK Super Chewer Tough Dog Toys & Treats Box

Best dog subscription

Every Super Chewer box includes tough toys & treats, curated from each month’s unique themed collection. And you’re going to be needing lots of toys and treats for your new pup (we do!). So subscribe and save knowing that each time a new box arrives, you can throw out the smelly toy that they’ve brought to your lap 1,000 times since last week.

Best New Dog Set, Diggs Evolv Essentials Set

Best dog crate

When you’re starting from scratch with a new pup, you need a lot. Diggs is where you should start. Their essentials kit includes the Evolv Dog Crate, Bolstr Dog Bed, Crate Bowl and Groov Training Aid. The slim, sleek crate looks better than most and is lightweight and easy to put together. The bed is just right and the extras are great adds. One and done.

PS-If you’re looking to crate train, Chewy has a great expert video on crate training.

Best Feeding Set, Trot Elevated Complete Set with Mat & Stand

best dog bowl set

Every new pup needs a feeding set, but an elevated set is something up there with essentials! We love Trot’s complete set as it’s a one and done for dogs of all sizes. The set comes with two bowls (a water bowl and puzzle style food bowl), an anti-spill silicone mat, 2 air tight lids for the bowls, and a raised stand in bamboo, available in three height options.

Worth mentioning: The tip & slide proof bowls stay in place for even the most aggressive eaters with magnets that attach to the mat or any floor.

Best Teeth Cleaning Product, Canine Fresh All-Natural Dental Chews

As a dog owner, you’ll soon learn that many dental chews contain ingredients that taste good but don’t actually address oral health problems or seriously bad-smelling dog breath.

Ultimate Pet Nutrition dental chews are the only chews that contain white curcumin and bee propolis. Bee propolis has been found to have beneficial properties such as antimicrobial, anticancer, antifungal, antiviral and anti-inflammatory and curcumin can help prevent gingivitis while also removing plaque, bacteria, and inflammation. Our new pup loves these chews, she grabs it and runs right to her crate for solitary enjoyment!

Best Dog Bed, Newton Washable & Orthopedic Pet Bed

Best dog bed

When you’re looking for the best mattress for your fur baby (or the best baby mattress) the choice either way is Newton. These beds are breathable, hypoallergenic and washable. The extra cover is a life-saver, as you know what happens with puppies. But just like babes, they grow out of this stage and are the best things that have ever happened to you.

Best Pet Supplement, Wild Alaskan Salmon & Pollock Oil by pawTree

Best pet supplement

Treat your dog to a soft, silky, and shiny coat. With almost 500 five star reviews on Amazon, users agree this Omega-3 supplement is a favorite. After only a few weeks of using it, you’ll be amazed at how luxurious, soft, and shiny their coat becomes. Not only is this fish oil packed with benefits for their diet, but your dog will love the taste and smell, too! The easy to use pump makes this super easy to give as well, plus since it’s not a pill, they actually eat it!

Best Interactive Dog Toy, Frisco 3-in-1 Interactive Dog Puzzle

Best interactive dog toy

This is Frisco’s advanced dog puzzle because these little guys are SMART. They also need constant stimulation and snacks. They can spend a good 20 minutes or so unpacking treats in this problem-solving game with sliding pieces and treat-filled nooks.

Great for dogs of all sizes, give them something to do other than eat your socks (and shoes and papers…you get it).

Best Stainless Steel Dog Bowl, Leashboss Stainless Steel Silicone Base Dog Bowl

Best dog bowl

The key here is the silicone bottom, which keeps these bowls from sliding all over the floor when the pups are hungry! They are made of food-grade stainless steel that is chew-proof and won’t absorb odors. Plus, they’re dishwasher-safe for easy cleaning.

Best Dog Jacket, Spark Paws WarmShield Water Resistant Jacket

Best dog jacket

This ultra warm, water resistant jacket is perfect for all dogs. Especially because it comes in size small-4XL! This parka is easy to get on, with double breasted front snaps for a great fit. It also features a velcro pocket for poop bags, reflective strips and a zipper hole for leash attachment. Plus..it’s SO cute. Our labradoodle is in size medium, but will likely grow to a large soon (eeks!).

Best Healthy Dog Food, Maev Human-Grade Raw Dog Food

Best healthy dog food

If you want premium food for your pup, check out Maev’s raw offerings. This arrives just like gourmet people food, so if your pup is as special as we think, this is a brand you’ll want to have on hand.

Best dog leash

Best Dog Treats, King Lou 10 Pack: Complete Health Bundle

Best dog treats

Our new pup LOVED King Lou’s treats. Amongst all of the new treats we tried, these were hands down a favorite. They are each single ingredient- meaning the salmon, chicken, turkey and beef are all JUST that, no added anything your pup does not need.

Best Dog Bath Brush, Aquapaw Dog Bath Brush Pro— Sprayer and Scrubber Tool

Our pups love this scrubber, enough to even enjoy a shower! The two in one sprayer and scrubber tool makes bathing easy, especially after your pups get used to the massaging treat. Use it indoor or outdoors, this is one of those products that every new dog owner needs.

Best Dog Boots, Muttluks Original Fleece-Lined Winter Dog Boots

Best dog boots

These cozy, fleece-lined dog boots feature flexible soles with specially-treated leather for an extra-comfortable fit. They even adapt to paw movement and to fit your buddy’s unique paw shapes. A waterproof, breathable and windproof outer fabric helps keep feet dry. With these boots in your winter arsenal, your best bud can say adios painful, cracked paws from ice, cold, salt and snow.

What are the Best Tips for a New Pet?

-Plan their homecoming at a time when you can be home for a few days. An extended weekend would be perfect. Take Friday and Monday off, if at all possible.

-Have a plan for when you go back to work. Plan where they will be and with whom. 

-Dogs are pack animals and many do not do well alone. Try to get two dogs, they are much happier with a friend.

-Your new dog might be well adjusted and ready for some fun and bonding, or they might have gone through trauma or be sad, scared, angry, or ill. Give them time! Your new relationship might come with harps and violins, or it might take work, patience, and time, and become the best relationship of your life. Give them time to get to know you, your routine, and recover from whatever they might have gone through. 

-If you don’t know what they might have gone through and want to know them better and deepen your connection, hire an animal communicator like me to find out about their past, and their needs and wants. 

-Don’t panic if they are sweet as puppies and then become hyper, energetic, and out of control as teens. It is a phase, not forever. Usually when you think you can’t stand it one more second, you are in the eye of the storm and if you can increase their exercise and activity, you will get through it. Hang in there!

What Not to do With a New Dog

Don’t leave dogs unattended by a pool! Yes dogs instinctively swim, but when they fall in, they will not know where the steps are— they will try to get out at the sides, and drown. 

Don’t leave a choke chain on a dog unattended. It can get caught on something and it will strangle them. 

Don’t leave chocolate, chewing gum, or any kind of aspartame laying around, they are poisonous to dogs.

Don’t give up on your dog, they need you and suffer abandonment, loss, and grief just like we do. 

Best Gifts for Dog Lovers

The best gifts are those that you and your dog will love. If your dog loves chew toys versus mind-games, then you’ll feel happy to have them, watching your pup revel in their time with their new gifts.

The content on this site is for informational purposes only and not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Discuss any health or feeding concerns with your infant's pediatrician. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay it based on the content on this page.

The content on this site is for informational purposes only and not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Discuss any health or feeding concerns with your infant’s pediatrician. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay it based on the content on this page.