4 Puppy Essentials You Shouldn't Skimp On

As you may have already discovered, owning a new puppy isn’t cheap. In between the visits to the vet and all of the treats you buy your puppy, it can seem like the expenses won’t end. So we certainly understand if you’ve found yourself trying to save some dollars by opting for the cheapest items available.

But while this can be a good strategy, there are some essentials for a new puppy that you really shouldn’t skimp on. Contrary to what you may believe, not all puppy items are created equal. 

A couple of dollars saved in the long run really isn’t worth it for your puppy’s leash and collar, dog food, and toys. These essential items require a bit more budget to ensure your puppy is getting the healthiest and most quality care. If you’re wondering why, read on, and we’ll teach you why you may want to return that budget buy.

A Leash & Collar

A leash for your puppy is definitely one item you shouldn’t skimp on. Leashes not only come in a variety of colors, they also differ greatly in the features and level of comfort they provide your puppy. Consequently, there are a number of considerations you should make before handing over your credit card.

As Cesar’s Way highlights, the type of leash you choose depends on your particular puppy’s walking style, behavior, and body. Take the time to read about the differences, and select a style that will best support your puppy on their walks.

Don’t forget to consider your needs as a puppy owner too. For instance, some leashes offer extra comfort for your hands, so they won’t start hurting after a long walk. Another thing to think about is that an investment in higher-quality materials will allow you to save money in the long run, since you won’t have to worry about regularly replacing these items.

You should also think about any additional features you may want your leash and collar to have. For example, some come with an illuminating feature that gives your puppy some extra visibility when walking at night. Do your homework, as there are literally thousands of leashes and collars to pick from! 

Dog Food

Perhaps dog food is one of those items that you mistook for being all the same. After all, your dog doesn’t have a gourmet palate, so isn’t all dog food the same? We hate to break it to you, but there is a big difference between different brands of dog food. Not to mention that your puppies dietary needs are completely different from those of an adult dog. 

As such, you should be buying quality dog food specifically for puppies. Once you read up on the differences between different brands and types of dog food, you may find yourself astounded that you ever thought they were all the same! 

As you’ll learn, dog food may or may not contain certain harmful additives. They may have added vitamins, minerals, and nutrients, or they may not. Perhaps you’re concerned whether the food is GMO-free or not. The list is truly endless. Upping your budget will give you a greater range of dog food to choose from, and therein, a better chance of tracking down the food most suitable to your puppy’s particular needs.

The same goes for dog treats too – pick a brand that has wholesome ingredients packed in their treats, and is delicious too!


Just like children, play is an essential part of a puppy’s healthy development and growth. The good thing is that puppies are naturally playful and affectionate, so usually you won’t have any trouble persuading your puppy to play with you and run around. 

So why is it important to not buy your puppy the cheapest toy you can find? Some cheaper toys are made with chemicals that may be harmful to your puppy. If you care about the environment, you also may be interested to learn that cheaper toys often use non-environmentally friendly materials that more expensive brands are more likely to avoid.

Curiously, while there is a body that checks the safety of all toys for humans, there is not an equivalent organization that regularly test animal toys. What’s more, there are no federal standards regarding pet toys. 

Not to worry, though! There are many toxic pet toy alternatives to choose from as a pet owner. To keep toxic materials at bay, a good rule of thumb is to always read the label of pet products or the product description if you’re shopping online. 

This is a guest post by Cynthia Lopez from PetLifeToday

July 31, 2018 by Henry & Penny
Itchy Paw Club, Party of One!

Itchy Paw Club, Party of One!

Itchy Paws..let's talk about them!

Poor Henry has allergies when he steps on wet grass. He wasn't always like this. He spent the first couple years of his life in NYC (no grass), then we were in Tampa, FL (dry grass) and now we are here in Pittsburgh, PA..where there is LOTS of wet grass in the morning. 

Once he comes inside, we wipe his paws with non-scented baby wipes and then dry them as much as possible. The allergens must still be present because all day, all I hear is *slurp, slurp, slurp* Henry's licking his paws again!

We tried putting socks on him because MAYBE that would help him stop licking. It did work, but it was only a temporary solution. 

Henry has itchy paws - we hoped these socks would help stop with the itching.

After doing a little research online, we saw information about a Povidone-Iodine soak for dogs with itchy paws! It's something you can find at any convenience store (look for it by the Hydrogen Peroxide). It will help kill germs, burns, scrapes and minor cuts. Also, it doesn't stain the paws, especially if you're a lighter colored doggo.

All you have to to do is:

  • Mix a little bit of it into a container large enough to hold your dogs paws (in this case, we used a casserole dish and did two paws at a time). 

Henry with an itchy paw soak

  • Just mix until the solution looks like iced tea (not the rapper!) and soak for 2-5 minutes. 

  • Dry off paws for a bit (Henry doesn't mind a nice hairdryer!)

  • RELAX! You're done!! 

Now, this isn't a fix-all, but it definitely helps remove the allergens to take the down the itching a notch. It's also a good idea to consult with a vet if you are concerned about the itchiness. 

 Check out our organic, all natural shampoo - it smells AMAZING and it gentle enough for the most sensitive puppers. Take a look, try it out & let us know what you think!


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August 14, 2017 by Henry & Penny
Our trip to Penn State University!

Our trip to Penn State University!

We went to Penn State for the weekend! The university is located in the beautiful town of State College, PA – dad went to school here!

We have been here once before but this time we had our own hotel room right in town

 and got to see the campus in session; the students LOVED us!

As we were exploring the downtown area and the school we got to smell and see all sorts of neat things.

Penny even found her long-lost family!!!!

We had so much fun at Penn State and felt so much love from the community and the students.

We got to eat ice cream at the Creamery but it’s ok because we walked almost 10 miles over the weekend! Needless to say we were pooped on our way home/once we got home. We can’t wait to go back!!

May 22, 2017 by Henry & Penny
Tags: penn state
H&P Organic Pet Shampoo - Read All About It!

H&P Organic Pet Shampoo - Read All About It!

People are probably wondering, "HEY! Why did you guys start selling dog shampoo?". The answer is simple: because we wanted to! No, but seriously, this stuff is amazing.

We sought out the BEST company in the USA to manufacture the organic and all natural shampoo for us. We decided on two different scents:

Peppermint Chill – Icy and refreshing for your doggie dude
Lavender Crush – Sweet and sensational for your doggie diva

They smell SOOOOOOOOOOOOO good!! After giving our own dogs a bath, this stuff *seriously* made their coats velvety smooth...even for WEEKS after...SOFT AF!

Synthetic detergents (not ours) contain many ingredients which are toxic and harmful to our four legged friends. Instead, conscientious pet owners should use natural liquid soap products (like ours!) designed with your pets health and well-being in mind. Dogs should be bathed every month to remove accumulated toxins that can make them more susceptible to disease. However, excessive bathing, especially with improper cleaning products, may remove natural oils and dry out a pet’s skin and coat.

Many animals develop sensitivities to the detergent chemicals commonly used in pet shampoos today. Because no chemical detergents, synthetic fragrances, colors, or antimicrobial preservatives are used in our Organic Pet Shampoo, the possibility of sensitivity reactions is greatly reduced. The natural essential oil blend also helps to repel fleas and ticks without poisoning your pet.

Click HERE to check them out for yourself and let us know how much it has improved your dog's coat! :)

April 20, 2017 by Henry & Penny