View Full Version : My puppy will arrive Monday night, need advise and help shopping!

25th February 2010, 07:22 PM
Hello all,

After looking for about 6 months things have all of a sudden moved quite a bit faster than I expected and I have a Ruby female cav arriving monday!

I have read in the other forums the shopping list, but part of it is a little vague so Im gonna ask for a bit more detailed advice.

Things I have:

SMALL crate, this is only 24 inches long but is the tall wire type enclosed crate with a tray, I got it for free.
Science Diet (Small Bites) Puppy Food
Little Rope toy with knots on either end (Smaller one)
Padded foam bed
Stainless Steel Water and Food Bowls
Brush (Not sure I got the right kind for a Cav)
Two small little area rugs.

Things I need:

Larger Crate, I can get a LARGE 48 inch one for a good price.
Collar + Tag


I am headed to the store today to pickup some toys and a collar for her... nothing overwhelming. I have the little rope toy, I was thinking some sort of plush or stuffed animal type thing for her. Do Puppys like larger stuffed animals to sleep with when they are younger?

My main question is the crate, I live in Alaska so I am going to ATTEMPT to have her 'go' in doors.

Should I get a MUCH bigger crate (The 48inch one) and divide it in half one side for going pee and such and the other for staying in when she cant be attended to totally?

Or would it be better to have a separate 'litter box' type setup? outside her crate? Would that be less confusing for her?

I have read quite a bit, but nothing I have seen has addressed teaching the dog to go on puppy pads, or newspaper, or some sort of litter box.


I was thinking of getting the really big crate (I have a good spot for it right in the center of my living room) and dividing it in half, having newspaper or puppy pads on one side of the crate, and having a little rug and her bed and toys on the other side.

Then taking the smaller crate and having it upstairs in our bedroom... but again I am worried that will be confusing for her as well.

I have housebroken dogs before, but there are times durring the year where it is neg 30 F to neg 50 F here (only 4 weeks a year or so) so that approach may not be valid here... as *I* wouldnt want to have to go outside and pee at neg 50 F.

I could also get a slightly smaller crate, the 36 inch long one, and then have a separate enclosed 'cat' litter box with newspaper next to that crate for her to use...

Or I could setup a 36 inch crate for sleeping, and the 24 inch crate next to it and 'enclosed' with blankets a bit wit newspaper in it to keep it from being confused with the sleeping area. This would also allow me to confine her till she 'goes' then praise her for going in the right spot.



Other than crate advice, Am I missing anything major for the puppy? It has been quite a few years since I owned a dog.

Thanks in advance.

25th February 2010, 08:17 PM
Wow, that was fast! Glad something worked out with a good breeder! :)

Just briefly: no do not use a large crate where the dog can pee in part of it. :eek: You will end up with a dog that is never housetrained. A dog cannot use an enclosed (covered) cat litter tray -- they are not large enough and are designed for cats. You can train to a litter tray but it is better to train to go to some special area outside or a litter area inside, as well as having one in a penned area for ONLY when you MUST pen the puppy -- you cannot just train to go to an area near the crate as a dog is not going to spend its life in such a penned area, an the puppy still needs to be trained to use such an arrangement -- eg it won't be automatically housetrained to a litter box in the way that kittens learn automatically :thmbsup:

This is an excellent guide:


It explains how to set up a pen and use a crate in the pen and litter box. Towards the end how to incorporate a litter box of some type. There are handy pics too! :)

I also recommend registering on the site above:


and immediately downloading the free book, After You Get Your Puppy. This will be endlessly helpful in every way! :)

PS you do NOT want a 48 inch crate -- way too large. Even with a medium crate -- the right size for a cavalier -- you will need to block off much of it til she is an adult, or she will pee all over the inside and this absolutely ruins crate training as a method. There are lots of links here on crate training -- i'd recommend searching for that keyword as training properly with a crate is absolutely essential or you create more problems.

26th February 2010, 07:11 AM
Look into dog specific litter boxes, or something like Pooch Potty (that's the brand name), which is essentially an indoor grassy area for training. Pet Patio Potty is another company that makes dog "litter boxes". Don't encourage your puppy to pee in the crate, this essentially is training her to go in her "home", and then she'll think it's fine to go in YOUR home.

You forgot treats; Guinness' favorite are duck jerky (dogswell brand), freeze-dried lamb liver, and yoghund frozen yogurt.

Personally I hold a low opinion of Science Diet food (it's a mediocre food at premium price), so I would buy the smallest bag possible and switch her to a better food. The reason I don't like it is the major ingredients: corn, chicken by-product meal... are all cheap sources of carbs, protein or fat. And yet they charge as much as a food that uses quality sources of carbs, protein and fat. For the same price you can find food that uses quality sources for carbs, protein and fat.

26th February 2010, 10:10 AM
hi - i got my Ruby end of october , been looking all over the country and was on waitin g lists then got the local paper one friday evening and there she was ! -a small family who have the odd litter and i know the older litters are ok healthwise as ive since met them so fingers crossed .. we had nothing as was literally the next morning we went to get her !! soooo went shopping on the way for a bed ,small crate, training pads and puppy food -and small toy . we just placed the pad near the crate at first and everytime she was out and went to pee i put her on the pad -literally hundreds of times the first day and by evening she was going to it herself:) at night i carried the crate up beside my bed and had a pad outside that too . all that happened that night and about 4 nights after was she wimpered quietly to alert me , i opened the crate door to let her on the pad for a wee then she went back to sleep ! she never once peed in her crate. now shes six months i just have a pad at the back door for her to go on -she goes in a spot in the garden too but we have had loads of snow so its been bit difficult .. still at night she sometimes wakes me with a little noise and we nip downstairs and on the pad then beck to bed ! im hoping one day she will grow out of needing one in the night but overall im pleased with how smoothly its gone . she never messes in the house or crate . its worth putting a big effort in -as long as they know what you want them to do they do their best to do it . good luck with it all my ruby has changed my life she is amazing :)