The Complete Curly Coated Retriever Puppy Shopping List

Bringing home a new furry friend is an exciting time, but preparing for their arrival can be overwhelming. If you’ve decided to add a Curly Coated Retriever puppy to your family, you’ll want to make sure you have everything you need to keep them happy and healthy. From basic essentials like food and water bowls to training aids and toys, there are a lot of items you’ll want to have on hand. In this article, we’ve compiled a comprehensive new puppy checklist of 23 must-have items for new Curly Coated Retriever puppy owners, so you can feel confident that you’re fully prepared for your new furry family member.


1. Curly Coated Retriever Puppy Food

When it comes to choosing a good food for a curly coated retriever puppy, there are a few things to consider. Firstly, the puppy’s age. Puppies in the first few weeks of life will require different nutrition than older puppies. For example, a newborn puppy will need a food that is high in fat and protein, while an older puppy may require a food that is lower in fat and higher in fiber. Many curly coated retriever owners prefer to continue using the same food that the breeder or rescue was using, at least in the beginning. In addition, always speak with your veterinarian about their food recommendation.

To view which puppy foods iHeartDogs recommends, visit our guide here.


2. Food & Water Bowls

When choosing a water and food bowl for a curly coated retriever puppy, it’s important to choose one that is easy to clean and will not harbor bacteria. Plastic bowls are often the most popular choice, as they are inexpensive and can easily be replaced. However, plastic bowls are more likely to harbor germs. Stainless steel and ceramic bowls are a good choice, as they are more durable and do not hold onto odors. It’s important to choose a bowl that is the right size for your curly coated retriever puppy, as too large of a bowl could make it difficult for them to eat and drink from it. Additionally, try to find a bowl with a non-slip bottom, as this will help to keep it from sliding around on the floor when your puppy is eating or drinking. Finally, check for any sharp edges that could hurt your puppy.

We love this puppy bowl from Amazon because it includes a silicone mat to prevent messes.

3. Leash and Collar (or Harness)

You’ll need a quality collar and a leash for your new curly coated retriever pup. Make sure the collar is the right size and comfortable for your pup to wear. Keep in mind they will likely grow out of them quickly, so you may want to buy multiple in different sizes.

For collars, we love these simple and durable embroidered collars. Having your dog’s name and phone number personalized directly on the collar is an extra precaution, as dog ID tags can easily wear out and fall off.


4. Dog Crate

If you plan to crate train your pup, you’ll need a crate. When choosing a crate for your puppy, there are a few things to consider. First, make sure to purchase one that is the appropriate size for your puppy. The crate should be big enough for your puppy to comfortably stand up, turn around, and lay down, but not too big that they have too much extra space. Second, consider the type of crate you purchase. Wire crates are more breathable and typically lighter, but plastic crates create a more enclosed space, which is ideal for puppies that are anxious or crate-trained. Third, think about the features of the crate. Look for crates with removable trays, handles, and locks for safety and convenience. Lastly, consider the price range of the crate. Many pet stores have a variety of crates within different price ranges, so you can choose one that fits your budget.

This is Amazon’s best selling dog crate. It can be adjusted as your puppy grows.

5. Curly Coated Retriever Appropriate Toys

When choosing toys for a new puppy, it’s important to find ones that are safe and durable. Look for toys that are made with non-toxic materials, are easily washable, and don’t have small parts that can be chewed off and swallowed. Soft, plush toys are great for cuddling and playing, and durable rubber or plastic toys can help with teething. Choose a variety of toys to keep your puppy entertained and help them learn about the world around them. It’s also a good idea to rotate toys. Periodically add and remove toys from your puppy’s toy box to keep them fresh and exciting. And lastly, always always monitor your puppy while playing to ensure they don’t destroy a toy and it becomes a choking hazard!

Kong brand toys are a great option for their durability and versatility

7. Natural & Safe Puppy Chews

In addition to durable toys, you’ll likely want to invest in some long-lasting natural chews for you curly coated retriever pup. Avoid chews with dangerous or synthetic ingredients like rawhide. Our puppies have always enjoyed the Earth Animal No-Hide chews. They looks and feel like rawhide, but are made from safe, but still long lasting ingredients.


No Hide chews are an excellent and very popular option for puppies

8. Grooming Supplies

If you plan to groom your pup yourself, you’ll need some basic grooming supplies. This includes a brush, shampoo, nail clippers, and anything else you need to groom your pup.

9. Dog Bed

Choosing a good bed for your new curly coated retriever puppy is important. Look for one that is comfortable, supportive, and easily washable. Make sure the bed is large enough for your puppy to grow into, and that the material is durable enough to withstand wear and tear. Choose a bed that is made from a breathable material to help keep your puppy cool and comfortable. Finally, look for a bed that is easy to clean and maintain.

This washable and waterproof bed is currently the most popular puppy bed on Amazon

10. Treats

Choosing good treats for a new puppy can be a daunting task. The first thing to keep in mind is that not all treats are created equal. Some treats contain unhealthy ingredients that can cause health problems for your pup, so it’s important to read labels and understand what goes into the treats you’re purchasing. The next step is to consider the size and type of treat you’re looking for. Smaller treats are better for puppies, as they are easier to digest and can help prevent bloating or an upset stomach. Additionally, you don’t want to give a treat your puppy can’t chew, as this could lead to choking or swallowing a large piece. Training size treats are usually the best option.

These popular Blue Buffalo treats contain DHA, which is beneficial to a developing puppy’s brain.

11. Poop Bags

A good stock of poop bags is absolutely essential. The best deal we’ve found on eco-friendly bags is this 540 box on Amazon. Don’t skimp on quality, as there is nothing worse than putting your hand into a poop bag only to find a hole!

12. First Aid Kit

Accidents can happen, so it’s important to have a pet first aid kit on hand in case of an emergency. This should include items like gauze, bandages, and antiseptic.

This economical first aid kit contains all the basics plus an emergency collar and thermometer.


13. Puppy Probiotics (for the inevitable upset stomach)

Transitioning to a new home can be stressful to your new curly coated retriever pup. This stress often results in an upset stomach, which can make potty training extra difficult. A good quality, multi-strain probiotic can help soothe your dog’s stomach and regulate their bowl movements. We like this 3-in-1 probiotic chew that also includes prebiotics & digestive enzymes.

This tasty 3-in-1 probiotic can help soothe an anxious puppy’s stomach. It also includes digestive enzymes and prebiotics.

14. Puppy Gate or Pen

There will likely be times where you wish to keep your curly coated retriever puppy contained in a smaller area. There are many great puppy gates or pens available for such a need.

15. Puppy Toothbrush

Veterinarians recommend getting your new puppy use to teeth brushing at an early age. They should quickly get use to the idea of someone touching their teeth. We like these small, nearly invisible finger toothbrushes. iHeartDogs knows the importance of dental health for dogs (it could save their life as they age) so they give them away for free (just pay S&H)

These gentle, nearly invisible toothbrushes are available free for new puppy owners here.

16. Urine & Odor Cleaner

Accidents happen! Inevitably, you’re going to need a good quality enzymatic urine cleaner. Our favorite formula is the Rocco and Roxie stain and odor eliminator on Amazon.


17. Puppy Potty Pads

When choosing pee pads for your new puppy it is important to consider the size, absorbency, and material of the pad. You’ll want to make sure the pad is large enough for your puppy to use comfortably and will last throughout the day. It’s also important to consider the absorbency of the pad. Look for a pad that will quickly and effectively absorb liquid and keep your puppy’s paws dry. In addition, you’ll want to make sure the material of the pad is safe for your puppy. Avoid materials that may contain harsh chemicals or irritants that could be harmful to your puppy’s skin. We love these eco-friendly, reusable potty pads on Amazon.

18. ID Tags

One absolute essential for your new pup is an ID tag to clip on their collar. In fact, go ahead and buy a couple, just in case one falls off! Make sure to include their name, and 2 phone numbers where you can be reached if someone finds your pup. Always remember to remove the collar (along with ID tag) if your puppy is left alone, as it can easily become tangled in something and risk serious injury. Here’s a round up of our favorite dog ID tag designs.


19. Seat Belt (for Harness)

If you plan on taking your curly coated retriever with you in the car, a seat belt that connects to their harness is a must! NEVER connect a seat belt to your dog’s collar, as even a small impact will put all the pressure on your dog’s neck.

We like this heavy duty seat belt from Amazon that includes a harness as well. 

20. Calming Puppy Heartbeat Toy (to soothe anxiety)

One of the most popular new items for a curly coated retriever puppy is a calming heartbeat puppy plush toy. This plush mimics the heartbeat of a mother dog. It also includes a one time use heat pack to mimic the warmth as well. Many dog owners find these very useful for crate training or periods of time when the puppy needs to be left alone.

21. Fish Oil (for Brain Development)

Although not absolutely essential, if you were to give your curly coated retriever puppy one supplement, it should be a good quality fish oil. Fish oil contains Omega-3 fatty acids (DHA and EPA) which are critical for early brain development. While some foods contain a bit of fish oil, it’s often a minuscule amount, and doesn’t survive the high heat processing that kibble requires.

We love this Norwegian salmon oil on Amazon. If you compare it side by side next to a typical low quality fish oil, you’ll see (and smell) a huge difference.

22. Brain Games

We all know puppies need to exercise their bodies, but what about their brains? Teaching a dog to use smell to find treats is called “nosework” and its becoming an extremely popular way to engage a bored dog. Remember, a bored puppy is a destructive puppy!

We love this high quality snuffle mat on Amazon. We tried several and there is a big difference in quality of the fabric, many get dirty or teat easily.


23. Curly Coated Retriever Puppy Training Course

Last, but certainly not least: don’t forget dog training! Training your curly coated retriever puppy is absolutely critical for their development. Dog training could even save their life in an emergency!

We’re big fans of SpiritDog training, as their online courses have excellent, easy to understand videos. They also allow you to ask unlimited questions to their trainers.

Here’s our top recommendations for curly coated retriever puppy training courses:

Potty Training for Curly Coated Retrievers Course
Obedience Training for Curly Coated Retriever Course
Loose Leash Walking for Curly Coated Retrievers Course (teaching your curly coated retriever puppy not to pull)
Coming When Called Curly Coated Retriever Course
Calming Down a Curly Coated Retriever Course

They also have training bundles that are a much better value, since they contain multiple courses in one:

Ultimate Curly Coated Retriever Puppy Training Bundle


By having these items on hand, you’ll be well-prepared for your new curly coated retriever pup. While it might seem like a lot to buy, these items are essential for providing your pup with the care and attention they need. With the right supplies, you can give your pup the best start to their life.


Frequently Asked Questions by New Curly Coated Retriever Puppy Owners

Bringing home a new Curly Coated Retriever puppy is an exciting time, but it can also be overwhelming. As a new owner, you want to make sure you’re doing everything right to keep your furry friend happy and healthy. Here are four common questions that new Curly Coated Retriever puppy owners may ask:

1. What is the best diet for a Curly Coated Retriever puppy?

A Curly Coated Retriever puppy thrives on a balanced diet rich in proteins, fats, and carbohydrates. Puppies, especially, need a diet formulated for large breeds to ensure proper growth and bone development. High-quality puppy food, either commercially manufactured or home-prepared with your vet’s supervision, is ideal. It’s also important to establish a feeding schedule and avoid overfeeding to prevent obesity. Fresh water should always be available.

2. How much exercise does a Curly Coated Retriever puppy need?

Curly Coated Retrievers are energetic and require regular exercise to maintain their health and happiness. Puppies should have several short play sessions throughout the day, as well as opportunities for walks that gradually increase in length as they grow. Avoid strenuous exercise and hard surfaces to protect their developing joints. Mental stimulation, such as training exercises and puzzle toys, is also important for their development.

3. What are the common health issues for Curly Coated Retrievers?

Curly Coated Retrievers are generally healthy but can be prone to certain genetic health issues like hip dysplasia, bloat, and eye conditions such as progressive retinal atrophy. Regular veterinary check-ups, a balanced diet, and appropriate exercise can help mitigate these risks. It’s also crucial to work with a reputable breeder who tests their breeding dogs for these conditions.

4. How do I groom my Curly Coated Retriever puppy?

The unique curly coat of a Curly Coated Retriever is relatively low maintenance. They require occasional brushing to remove dead hair and bathing only when necessary, as over-bathing can strip their coat of natural oils. It’s important to check and clean their ears regularly to prevent infections, and to trim their nails regularly to avoid discomfort and mobility issues.

5. How do I train my Curly Coated Retriever puppy?

Start with basic obedience training early, using positive reinforcement techniques such as treats and praise. Curly Coated Retrievers are intelligent and eager to please, making them generally responsive to training. Socialization is also key; expose your puppy to different people, dogs, and situations to develop a well-rounded adult dog. Consistency and patience are crucial throughout the training process.

6. How often do I need to take my Curly Coated Retriever puppy to the vet?

In their first year, puppies should visit the vet several times for vaccinations, deworming, and routine check-ups. After reaching adulthood, annual wellness exams are recommended to catch any potential health issues early. Additionally, spaying or neutering your puppy at the age recommended by your vet is important for their health.

7. What should I do if my Curly Coated Retriever puppy is chewing everything?

Puppy chewing is a normal part of teething and exploration. Provide plenty of chew toys and rotate them to keep interest high. Redirect chewing from inappropriate items to acceptable toys. If the chewing is excessive, consider puppy-proofing your home and using deterrents on items you cannot move. Consistent training and supervision are key to managing this behavior.

8. How can I socialize my Curly Coated Retriever puppy?

Socialization involves exposing your puppy to a variety of experiences, including meeting different people and animals, exploring new environments, and encountering various sights and sounds. Start this process early, ideally between 3 to 14 weeks of age, and continue throughout their life. Positive and controlled experiences are essential for building confidence and preventing fear-based behaviors.

9. What kind of living situation is best for a Curly Coated Retriever?

Curly Coated Retrievers are adaptable dogs that can thrive in various living situations, provided they get enough exercise and attention. They do best with access to a securely fenced yard where they can play and explore safely. However, with sufficient daily exercise, they can also adapt to apartment living. They are social animals who prefer to spend time with their family, so they should not be left alone for long periods.

10. Can Curly Coated Retrievers live with other pets?

Yes, Curly Coated Retrievers can live harmoniously with other pets, especially if raised with them from puppyhood. They are known for their friendly and sociable nature. Proper introduction and socialization are key to fostering positive relationships between pets. Monitoring interactions early on will ensure they develop a respectful relationship with one another.

Bringing home a new Curly Coated Retriever puppy is a big responsibility, but it’s also a rewarding experience. By providing your puppy with a healthy diet, plenty of exercise, proper training, and socialization, you can help them become a well-behaved and beloved member of your family.

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