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Five essential accessories for your dog

Tuesday January 12th 2016

If you own a dog, there’s a whole array of paraphernalia you need to care for him or her properly. But with so much to bear in mind, it can be difficult to make sure you get the right kit to do the job. Let us guide you through all the accessories you need to keep your dog happy.

1. Leads and collars
For first-time dog owners, a collar and a lead are among the best investments you can make. They allow you to safely take your dog out and about, meaning they can burn off that extra energy and stay in good shape.

When it comes to buying a decent lead, the most important consideration is getting the right size and shape for your dog.

Big dogs will need something a bit more heavy-duty to stop them breaking free, such as a chain lead
• For smaller doggies, go for something a bit lighter, so they won’t get weighed down by the excess load

Certain leads also come with a retractable piece of nylon cord, which will give your animal room to roam but always stay in touch.

With collars, much again depends on the breed of your dog. There’s a whole range of products out there, from simple buckle collars made of leather or nylon to safety devices designed to unclip if they get caught in something.

Tip: Make sure you get a suitable identity disc inscribed with your name, address and phone number. From this year, it will also be mandatory for all dog owners in England to microchip their animal.

2. Beds
Whether it’s in your favourite chair or on top of your laptop, you may be forgiven for thinking dogs will sleep anywhere. But it’s vital that your pet has a place of their own to lay their head, otherwise they could end up missing out on crucial rest.

You could decide to make your own bed using a basket and some spare blankets, or maybe pick up something purpose-built from a pet shop. Either way, your dog’s bed should be:

Moveable – So it can be placed somewhere warm or cooler in hot or cold weather
Roomy – Your dog should be able to stretch out or curl up if they need to
Comfortable – Many owners use a vet bed, which retain heat and are easy to clean should your dog have an accident

3. Clothing
When the temperature drops, many dogs can benefit from a bit of extra insulation, though it will depend on exactly what type of breed you have.

Whereas larger, long-haired dogs such as huskies, Alsatians and German Shepherds may not need an additional layer, smaller, short-haired breeds like greyhounds and poodles probably will.

If your dog falls into this category, you could think about getting a lightweight coat or even a pair of boots for when you go out for walkies in cold weather.

Remember: It’s important to make sure any clothing does not cover your animal’s ears, tail or eyes, as dogs rely on these to communicate.

4. Bags and mats
It’s against the law not to pick up dog mess and you could end up getting fined if you persistently fail to do so.

So it’s essential to have a trusty stash of strong, biodegradable poo bags to take out with you when your animal has its walk. Many are scented so you won’t have to endure the smell before you get a waste bin.

You can also get disposable mats to help keep your home tidy, as long as you can train your dog to use them when nature calls.

5. Crates and guards
Even if it’s just to take you pet down the road to the vet, you’ll need something in your car to ensure they don’t run about and end up hurting themselves.

Dog crate – Ideal for smaller dogs or short trips, crates are easy to move around and don’t require any installation
Dog guard – These are fitted between your backseat and boot and can give your animal a bit more room to move about.

Author Bio:
This article was written on behalf of helpucover. helpucover is a trading style of Pinnacle Insurance plc, an insurance company who offers Pet Insurance. Visit us online at