Getting ready for your Havanese Puppy!

Necessary items: 

A BED FOR PUPPY – Buy a bed that will fit your dog when full grown. 
I like the donut beds because you can throw them in the washing machine. 
My dogs prefer them because they give a raised area around the rim to lay their head on. They are very comfortable and reasonably priced.

FOOD BOWL AND WATER DISH – I prefer stainless steel dish with rubber rim around the bottom to prevent sliding on the floor. Ceramic bowl is my second choice. You can buy just a bowl for water or there are other options to consider: 
a bowl with attached reservoir (bottle) or a fountain type bowl with water filter.

HIGH QUALITY KIBBLE - Puppy will go home with food. Information regarding the brand we are currently feeding will be provided at the time of pick up. You should continue with same food. Leaving mom and siblings is the biggest change in puppy’s life. Puppy should not change the food as well at this time. If you would like to feed different food later, there are many good brands to choose from but you will not find them at the grocery store. Go to Petco, Petsmart, or a feed store to find higher quality foods. Suggested brand: Flint River Ranch, Natural Balance, Taste of the Wild, Chicken Soup for Puppy Lover’s Soul, Wellness, Solid Gold, Eagle Pack, Innova etc. AVOID FOODS WITH CORN OR CHICKEN BY-PRODUCTS. Avoid foods with too much or too low protein, 22-25% protein is optimal. Puppy could be switched to another food later gradually mixing current food with little bit of new food in the beginning and adding more new food each day to avoid diarrhea caused by sudden food change. 

TREATS – Liver treats, small amounts of cheese, or meat only as a treat. 
Always consider potential choking hazard when giving a treat. There are a lot of interesting treats to choose from at the pet store. However, have in mind that most dog treats in the market are made in China. Never give too many treats to your dog to prevent potential liver and kidney problems that many dogs experienced recently with treats made in China. Please keep treats away from kids. They tend to over feed puppies with treats, this could lead to liver damage.

RAWHIDE CHEWS are great for exercising puppy teeth. I like natural chews like Bully sticks, Pig ears, Cow ears, Lamb ears…..However, it is very important that you supervise puppies when they are chewing on a rawhide. Never walk away from them. 

TOYS! - Havanese love all kinds of toys. Avoid buttons or anything that a puppy could choke on. Do not buy toys filled with little beans or pellets. Most toys are pretty safe. My dogs love squeaky toys and long furry tug-o-war toys as well as braided fleece ropes. Make a toy basket somewhere in your house and your dog will visit it frequently. Having plenty of toys and chews on hand discourages puppies from chewing things you don't want them to chew. 
They are a necessity for puppies!

Nature's Miracle Stain and Odor Remover – It really works! Just follow the directions. All puppies will have accidents now and then. 
The most important thing is to have a regular schedule for taking puppies outside to do their business. Take your pup out every two- three hours, after waking up in the morning or after a nap, after eating, and after vigorous play. When a puppy puts its nose to the ground and starts running around in circles, TAKE HIM OUT!
He has to go! Take puppy to the same spot every time, and give the same command "Go potty." Give tons of praise when he goes. The best strategy is to set your puppy up for success by making it difficult for him to make a mistake. 
Don't give your puppy run of the house. Confine to a tiled or non-porous floor until they are reliable. Allow him on the rug for limited amounts of time after he has just done his business. It is not the worst thing in the world if puppy has an accident. 
We just don't want it to become a habit or pattern.
* See "Doggy Door" below for other housetraining tips.

Collar, leash, and pet identification tag – I like the nylon collars with plastic connector. Check for fit frequently since puppies are growing and the collar will need to be adjusted. Collars should be comfortably snug, not too tight and not too loose. However, when walking the puppy, use a harness! Dogs and puppies can slip out of regular collars. Harnesses are much safer. I use a 4' leash with puppies. 6' leashes are fine when they are older and cooperating with you better. A pet identification tag with your phone number (include area code) and cell phone number is imperative. Should your pet become lost, identification will expedite its return to you.

Puppy Shampoo and Conditioner - I love all natural Buddy wash shampoo and conditioner with Lavender & Mint scent. It is soap free with no chemicals and additives. It uses It could be ordered online from 
Make sure that you also buy a mild tearless puppy shampoo that will not sting puppy’s eyes to wash puppy’s head. Petco and Petsmart sell many different brands of shampoos and conditioners that are fine.

Grooming tools - It is recommended that you buy:
• a pin brush (metal) 
I like Greyhound brushes by Ashley Craig as well as Vellus brushes
• original greyhound metal comb with both wide and closely set teeth could be purchased at Greyhoundcomb website   or similar cheaper version at Petsmart.
• a flea comb for brushing hair around the eyes
• spray bottle for misting the coat with water before combing or brushing it
• Latex bands or covered bands for keeping the coat out of puppy's eyes 
(Sally’s Beauty Supply). You will have to wait until the coat on the head is long enough before you can do this. It is very important to keep the hair out of the eyes.
• Hair dryer – Andis makes one for $30 which has a stand - Petsmart
• Nail clippers

Crate - There are essentially two types of dog crates- 1) the plastic kennel and 2) the wire crate. With many wire crates, you can buy a divider to section off the crate so puppy's area in the crate starts out small and gets bigger as he grows. The biggest mistake dog owners make when choosing a crate is getting one that's way too big. For housebreaking purposes, crate should be just big enough for puppy to stand up, turn around and lie down in. This will help your housebreaking program, since puppy has a natural tendency to not want to soil his sleeping area. If you get a crate that's too big, he'll use one half as a bedroom and the other half as a bathroom. Not good.

Optional Items:

PET GATE – for restricting puppy from "off-limit" areas of your house. I have several Hands-Free gates  installed in my house.

EXCERCISE PEN  - for keeping puppy confined when you are away for potty
training purposes. Petco and Petsmart sell them, made by Precision. 
It will set up easily in your house in any configuration you need.

DOGGY DOOR – I love the freedom of dogs having access to their potty area whenever they want. I have 3 doggy doors installed in my house. You can find doggy doors at home improvement and pet supply stores. The alternative is to hang a bell from the door where puppy exits. The puppy must be able to easily reach the bell and jingle it with a touch of its nose. To train puppy to do this,
"play with the bell," making sure puppy touches it, immediately praise and open
 the door for puppy to go out. This will only work if you are willing to let your pup out every time they jingle the bell. This system works for many dog owners.