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Commercial Dry Dog Food

Opinions about the best dog food are as varied as opinions about different dogs; everyone thinks their pick is best. We suggest sticking with brands that minimize the use of corn and Poodles, along with other drop-eared breeds, are susceptible to yeast infections and irritations both on their skin and in their ears. To help prevent this, we recommend a raw or chicken-free diet. We do not require our puppies be fed a grain-free diet - simply a reputable, balanced, high-quality diet will serve your poodle puppy well.


Maybe it's your first puppy, maybe it's your first puppy in a long time, or maybe you just want to try something different with the newest member of your pack. With your new Standard Poodle puppy, there are several things we can recommend to help you get off to a great start! Our recommendations for each is detailed below. For our grooming recommendations, please visit Grooming Help.

  1. Puppy Food

  2. Crate (36" or 42" Midwest Lifestages or Ovation)

  3. Crate Pad (The Big One chenille bath mat from Kohls)

  4. Food and Water Dishes, suggest stainless steel

  5. Flat Martingale Collar

  6. Puppy Kindergarten (AKC Star Puppy Class)

  7. 10" Steel Comb, also called greyhound comb or poodle comb, as well as a grooming rake.

  8. Pin brush or slicker. Store slickers are fine for puppies but suggest a good quality one for adults. 

  9. Odor removing spray (Out! or Natures Miracle)

  10. Puppy-safe chew toys (Kong, Pet Stages, unstuffed plush, etc.)


Your new puppy will be well on his or her way to being housebroken. We acclimate puppies to crates as a tool to help with housebreaking and to give the puppies a familiar, comfortable den. By the time your puppy goes home, he will have spent time alone in his crate between feedings and playtime and will have associated the crate with positive things. Schedules are important in housebreaking. You can use whatever schedule works for you, but to start there are a few we can recommend. We love the 7-day Housebreaking Plan, based on excerpts from How To Housebreak In 7 Days. You may download a copy of it here: 

We recommend the MidWest LifeStages double-door folding crate, found affordably on or Get a 36" or 42" crate that can accommodate your poodle as an adult (the crate comes with a divider that can be used while your pup is growing). Not all poodles will require crating as adults, but we recommend keeping a crate familiar and available for your dog in case of unexpected company, travel where a crate is required, or for attending shows and events. In addition, a crate is your puppy's safe space, and they appreciate it!

Pro Plan Lam & Rice.jpg
  • We use and recommend Purina Pro Plan dry dog food. Salmon and Rice or Lamb and Rice puppy formulas are preferred for puppies. Our veterinarian recommends a puppy formula over an "all life stages" food for puppies.

  • For adults, any of the Sensitive Skin and Stomach Salmon and Rice or Lamb and Rice varieties are sufficient. As a topper we'll use Primal freeze dried raw beef topper and soak in a little (not a lot) hot water

  • Other brands we recommend include Victor, Purina One Lamb and Rice or Sensitive Skin and Stomach, and Fromm. Expensive boutique-brand food doesn't guarantee the best diet, but low-price grocery brands will likely not be up to snuff.

  • Check your locally owned pet boutiques or shop online at and, whichever food you choose, be sure it's a good one!

Everyday Essentials

Put this high up on your list! When your puppy has an accident (and odds are, he will), you'll need a good enzyme spray to prevent odor and stains. We like both Natures Miracle and Out! stain and odor remover for the task.  Proper use will prevent urine and fecal odors from soiling your floors and fabrics.  Odor remover sprays come in handy long after the puppy stage is over; a dog with an upset stomach will quickly remind you how lucky you are to have something to clean up the mess!

The Big One bath mat

The Big One Chenille Bath Mat from Kohl's has replaced the DIRTY DOG DOORMAT as one of my favorite pet items! With furry feet, lots of rain and hardwood floors, these mats are essential to keeping things neat and tidy. To boot, they are a fraction of the cost and often on sale at Kohl's. 


The mats help wick up the moisture before the dogs can jump their muddy feet on our beds.  They're machine washable and come in several sizes. They make great crate pads too. Pick up a few - we love them!

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