Tried and True: Audax Necessities
When adding a canine companion to your household there are basics supplies that you always need. Since there are so many products on the market, this can be overwhelming. I am so excited to share with you a few of my favorite dog necessities! Please note: This post contains some affiliate links. At no additional cost to you, we may make a small commission when you use our links.
Every dog needs a flat collar!
Do you remember the joy you felt when picking out your dog’s first collar? I still have my dog’s very first collar saved in a box. Flat collars are an essential part of everyday life with our dogs. When I’m training my dog, examining them, putting a leash on them, playing with them, or teaching them something new - I use my flat collar. Flat collars are also an easy way for your dog to wear their identification or rabies tag. I love Coastal Pet Products K9 Explorer line. They come in a variety of colors and have a reflective stitching. I like that the sturdy metal clip is both durable and functional!
Leashes!!! I’m a total leash snob. I want a leash that is going to feel good on my hands and is lightweight. I believe that if my leash and the leash clip are lightweight, my dog will feel the leash less and be able to move to off leash work much faster. Leash work is a huge battle for many people. If you’re dealing with a puppy or dog biting the leash, reach out and I’ll help you fix it! There are a few main reasons why they do it. It all comes back to how the handler is using the leash. If a leash feels good in your hands, it makes handling that much easier. My go to leash is a 6 foot leather or biothane leash that is ½” thick!
Retractable leashes are generally a bad idea.
Not only do they cultivate bad leash walking habits, retractable leashes are known for owners losing fingers and even being blinded when hit by the metal clip breaking as their dog pulls. BLEH! No thank you! There are only two circumstances when I consider using them: Pottying dogs when we travel, and working on recall in low distraction areas.
No matter how great the fad seems, please AVOID the bungee leashes. It will not help you accomplish your goals with your dog unless you LOVE having your dog pull you!
Long Lines. Until your pup has a reliable recall under distraction, it is crucial to exclude failure. A long line gives your pup freedom to explore and be a puppy but still allows you to know your dog is safe. A 15’ longline is a great option for training classes. It’s long enough to allow you to stretch your dog and to work on duration behaviors like sit and down while you build distance from your pup without having to manage a 30-50 foot longline. 30-50 foot longlines are good to graduate to as you build reliability with your dog from a distance. Biothane longlines are awesome because they are weatherproof and extremely durable. Nylon longlines are an inexpensive alternative.
My Favorite Dog Dishes!
I love stainless steel dog bowls. They are easy to clean and sanitize. They last forever. I recently found a fun weighted bowl that I use for travel. My dogs don't flip it so I’m comfortable leaving a water bowl in their crate in my vehicle or on the bathroom floor in our hotel room. I’m all about minimal mess. It’s stainless steel, but also a cute purple!
Which dog bed is the best? What should I use where? Can my dog have multiple dog beds? I’m so glad you asked!
I have elevated washable pet cots for my deck and patio areas that are easy to hose off and clean or pull the covers off and wash. They dry fast, are less likely to mold or get gross and in the hot summer months, and I love that my dogs stay cooler.
In my home, I use cushy orthopedic dog beds. I love the BedSure brand from Amazon. They have a back bolster for
my dog’s comfort. They’re super cute in my family room. And most importantly, they are easy to wash! Just unzip the cover, throw it in the wash and it looks brand new! Mine are over 2 years old and still in excellent condition.
Lastly, I LOVE my Kuranda Dog Cots! These are easy to clean and almost indestructible. The bed is marine grade vinyl that slides into a lightweight, airplane grade aluminum frame. They are the best. In 5 years, I have only had to replace the fabric for one of my cots! These are great for indoor, outdoor or kennel use.
Dog Crates for travel, potty training and sleeping safely
A dog crate for your new puppy or dog can be a controversial topic. We believe that we can play games with our dogs and puppies to make a crate a positive experience and a safe place for our dogs. We utilize crates for potty training, travel and sleeping at night. I love the security of knowing that my dog is safe when we travel together. I know first hand the physical trauma that happens to my own body in a car accident. I never want my dog to experience that! I want to be 100% sure that my dogs are safe when we travel. I will not risk my dog being thrown around or thrown out of the vehicle and using a crate eliminates the possibility. All of my dogs are also crated at night. My dogs are well trained, reliable and trustworthy, but they are still dogs. Why take an unnecessary risk? Many ER Vets in the PNW are not accepting new patients. They are at max capacity. Those accepting patients are frequently an 8-12 hour wait to be seen. I will not put my dog in the potential position to need medical care and not be able to receive it. Crates are a tool used for the safety and happiness of our dogs!
My preference is a hard plastic, airline approved crate. They are light enough that I can move them on my own. The Ruffland crates fit perfectly in my vehicle and are easy to clean. If a hard plastic crate will not fit in your vehicle, consider either a soft sided travel crate or harness that buckles into a seat belt buckle. Remember safety first!
Most all of my dogs’ sleep in PetMate Vari Kennel Crates. I love the Vari Kennel line because they are durable and easy to clean. The 4 pronged doors on the Sky Kennel variety are my favorite. I stay far away from wire crates. I have seen so many puppies learn how to wiggle the latches and open the doors or pull apart the wires. Once a dog realizes that it can escape, it will continue to try and escape no matter what you put the dog in!