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What to have before your puppy comes home:


For the drive home:

  • A travel crate for the ride home.  If you need one, let us know and we'll provide you with a plastic travel crate for an additional $40.00.  If you're adopting an older pup or an adult, we can give you a price quote on a larger crate.  This will be required if you're travelling alone.  We do not allow our pups to leave knowing they will be held by the driver.  This is not safe for either of you for multiple reasons. 

  • Old towels or blankets to place in his crate to keep him warm and help him feel more comfortable.  If you'd like us to rub one or two on his littermates when you're here, let us know.  The smell often makes him adjust to the crate easier.

  • A water dish in case he/she needs a drink during the ride home.  However, we don't recommend this unless the drive is more than about two hours.  Also, unless the drive home is more than four or five hours, please don't feed him until you get home as he/she may get car sick and/or have to go potty.

  • You may want to bring along some paper towels and even some wet wipes in case of an accident on the way home.
    They do happen from time to time.  


  • A couple of toys for the drive home may help keep him calm and cry less---sometimes not.

  • A collar and leash in case you do need to give him a potty break.  Puppies sometimes will run, and running out onto a road wouldn't be good!

  • You may wish to bring one or two gallon jugs with that we can fill up for you so you can mix it with your own water at home and make this change gradual as well.  We have well water here that does not contain any added chemicals whatsoever.  A sudden change of water can make people sick, and can really cause problems with a little puppy.


Items to have waiting at home for your new baby to arrive:

  • Food.  We STRONGLY suggest you continue to feed him the best quality, most digestible food we've ever tried, Life's Abundance All Life Stages Formula. However, should you choose to switch to a different brand, please mix it with the bag of  food we send home with him to ovoid too much stomach upset or loose stools.  Also, make sure it is a completely digestible food that DOES NOT contain CORN, WHEAT or SOY.  These ingredients are only fillers which will cause excess and often loose stools.  They are not good for dogs.  Plus, these ingredients can cause sever allergic reactions in dogs, even if there is no history of allergies in the lines.

  • Good quality treats for training and rewards.  Use only in small amounts, as too many can cause digestive problems and/or diarrhea.  Also, poor quality treats can contain unhealthy ingredients, much like feeding a newborn baby french fries.  Remember also, it's not the size of the treat that you give your puppy, it's the fact that you were happy with him and let him know by rewarding him with a treat.  A tiny piece is plenty.  Life's Abundance also sells excellent quality dog treats, which we recommend, so you know you're offering a healthy treat that your puppy will LOVE!

  • Ceramic or stainless steal food and water dishes.

  • A large 36 to 42 inch crate for house-training.  Don't bother buying a smaller one as Lab puppies grow very quickly and will outgrow it in no time at all.  We prefer and recommend wire crates over plastic ones.  For one thing, most of them come with dividers that allow the crate to "grow" with your puppy and make housebreaking quicker.  Also, your puppy will not feel like they are being punished just for existing if they can see you and not feel separated from you.  Labs are very social dogs and the last thing he/she ever wants to be away from you.  Also, remember that ALL PUPPIES will chew.  You won't want to give your puppy free roam of the house until he/she is passed this stage.  Not only can they wreck your new shoes, but they WILL chew electrical cords, which can be extremely dangerous--and expensive to replace.  You'll want to keep him crated whenever you are not able to supervise him.  A puppy is a lot like a 12-18 month old baby.  Even human babies need to learn where to go potty and what they shouldn't put in their mouths.  Please do not expect your new puppy to act like a dog.

  • Old towels or blanket that can be washed easily or thrown out should them become soiled or chewed up.  Don't waste your money buying a cute bed for your puppy, as it'll likely be chewed the first night.  Wait until he/she is at least 12-18 months before trying to use something you'd like to last more than one night.  When a puppy is bored, he'll chew....  

  • Speaking of chewing...  LOTS of chew toys.  We've found that puppies love little stuffed animal toys that squeak, but they won't last long, so watch them closely. Kong toys or other heavy duty rubbery ones will last much longer.  Rope toys are also a favorite, but again, make sure they are not coming apart, or they will get lodged in their stomach.  Tennis balls are another favorite.  When they are older, we also recommend rawhides, but in moderation only.  When they start to get wet and soggy, take them away and let them dry out.  When they get soggy the puppy can bite off pieces that can cause a choking hazard.

  • A good collar and leash set.  You should also get him an ID collar tag that contains your contact info, in case he should get lost, even if you decide to have your puppy microchipped.

  • A fenced in yard if possible.  If not, you may want to purchase a Wireless Fence for your puppy.  We use this for our house dogs, and it is a lifesaver--literally!  Before trying one of these, we were skeptical, but it really works!  Plus, you may use it for an unlimited number of dogs by purchasing additional collars.  A lot of pet and farm stores also carry this product.  Labs are smart dogs and learn how to use these very quickly.

What's included with your new puppy?

Below is a list of items which we include with every puppy adopted from Northern Lakes Labradors:

  • Your puppy will always receive a bath in Lavender scented Baby Shampoo, to calm him/her down and be sure he/she is sweet smelling before the long drive home.    We will also trim his/her nails one last time before leaving as well.

  • Your pet puppy's health/hip/eye warranty. (With limited registrations only.)

  • Your puppy's LIMITED AKC application, unless discussing your plans previously, regarding breeding or showing.  There is an additional $1000.00 fee for FULL AKC registration papers. (Not every puppy qualifies for breeding/ show rights.)

  • Your puppy's vaccination/deworming records.

  • Info on spaying/neutering your puppy to protect his/her health and unwanted breedings.

  • Info on Labrador Retrievers and their breed standard from the AKC's website.

  • Info on bringing home your new puppy.

  • A small bag of the puppy/dog food he/she is currently eating.  If you'd like to purchase a 3.3# bag of this food from us to carry you over until your order comes in, please request this.  This is an additional charge of $14.00.  Please order you puppy's food ASAP, so you'll have it in time for his/her arrival at your home.  Life's Abundance Food

  • Info on the MICROCHIP that has been inserted into your new puppy, if you decided to purchase one.  There is an additional fee of $55 for this, which includes his/her LIFETIME registration with AKC Reunite.

  • A collar and leash (or combo all-in-one product) if needed, upon request.

  • A travel crate, by request, if needed to be sure you all make it home safely.  There will be an additional charge of $40 for a crate.  PLEASE DO NOT PLAN TO HOLD YOUR PUPPY IN YOUR LAP, IF YOU WILL BE ALONE IN THE CAR!  You never know when a puppy may jump down by your feet and cause a potentially deadly accident.  Either plan to bring a small travel crate when you pick your puppy up, or let us know that you would like to purchase one from us.  

  • Other items as we feel necessary.

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