Cheepsus and gentle leader

Gentle Leader Dog Collar

Gentle Leader Dog Collar

Today I would like to review gentle leader dog collar. This collar can be a really great tool to teach your puppy obedience. But I would like to start from the beginning.

Collar We Used

When Cheepsus joined our family we used a regular collar which we bought on Amazon. It was Blueberry Pet Solid Color collar, one of our items on New Puppy Supply List. When we bought this collar we wanted a simple beautiful blue collar that would make our puppy look very handsome.
The collar served its purpose but did not help a lot in teaching Cheepsus obedience. We had a lot of trouble with pulling when walking him on a leash.

Recommendation From Our Pet Sitter

As Cheepsus was growing quite fast and was getting stronger, pulling force increased as well. Luckily our pet sitter recommended trying gentle leader dog collar. We were a bit skeptical in the beginning, cause we didn’t think that a gentle leader collar could make a big difference. However, we decided to give it a try as pulling was getting out of hand.

It Was a Miracle

Literally – gentle leader dog collar was a miracle. For the first time ever we were finally able to enjoy walks with CheepsusCheepsus and gentle leader without any pulling.

How Does It Work

The nose loop goes around the dog’s nose and jaw and acts in the same way as a pack-leader’s mouth – this is a clear signal to the dog that you are the leader. The neck strap puts pressure on the back of the neck which causes an instinctive relaxation response when the dog tries to pull forwards.

Practice makes perfect

Like barking and jumping, pulling on a leash is a self-rewarding or self-reinforcing behavior and every time the dog is successful in pulling, the more the dog will pull. In simple language, pulling works and dogs do what works for them. A gentle leader dog collar is a management tool, not a training aid.

They say that ideally, you should begin using the gentle leader dog collar with your puppy at 8-10 weeks of age, but no dog is ever too old to benefit from wearing one.

kibble food

Best Dog Food for Labrador Puppy

If you already have a labrador puppy you already know that they love to eat. If you don’t have it yet, soon you will learn. Most likely you will have a question what is the best dog food for labrador puppy. I am going to tell you the whole story how we discovered Wellness Core Grain Free Dry Dog Food, which we are currently giving to Cheepsus.
Diana and I spent some time investigating available foods, reading reviews and of course trying some on Cheepsus. I won’t lie – he really enjoyed this part.

Feeding Your Dog

We are all very aware that long-term health is at least partly dependent on a decent diet, and that this applies to our dogs as it applies to us.
There are three categories of dog food:
  1. Kibble.
  2. Raw food.
  3. Wet food.
And it is up to you to decide what you will be feeding your puppy. If you want to read a bit more about dog nutrition then visit this page. We decided that we will continue feeding Cheepsus on kibble as his breeder.

How We Chose The Best Kibble Option

When we started our preparation before bringing Cheepsus to our home, we got some puppy kibble for him. It was a random Purina Beneful Healthy Puppy kibble which we bought from Target on Black Friday. We bought it without much thinking, cause it was a good deal. We just assumed that all kibble was pretty much the same.
The breeder was feeding all her puppies on Purina Pro Plan Focus Puppy Large Breed Dry Dog Food and recommended that we should do that same as she had a strong belief that this was the best food for puppies.
On Cheepsus first visit to his vet, they gave us a sample bag of Hill’s Science Diet Large Breed Dry Dog Food.
So probably during the first month, he tried all of these and enjoyed each – as all labradors do. But the question about the best food for puppies was still on my mind.
While I was researching puppy food on the internet, I came across website, which does dog food reviews and rates it. For members, they give access to Editor’s Choice section of the website, where they have a huge database of rated dog food.
I went through the list and selected the ones that had 4-5 stars rating out of 5 stars. With this list, I went to to see what was available as I wanted to use their Subscribe & Save service for kibble delivery. That’s how I ended up with Wellness Core Grain Free Dry Dog Food Puppy Formula option.

Wellness Core Grain Free Dry Dog Food

Wellness Core Grain Free Puppy Formula receives the Advisor’s top rating of 5 stars. The manufacturer claims the recipe meets AAFCO nutrient profiles and to be “complete and balanced” for growth.
Below you can see a list of ingredients and nutrient content.
Wellness Core Puppy Formula details

Main Ingredients

The first ingredient in this dog food is chicken. Although it is a quality item, raw chicken contains about 80% water. Most of that moisture is going to evaporate during cooking. This reduces the meat content to just a fraction of its original weight.
The second ingredient includes chicken meal. Chicken meal is considered a meat concentrate and contains nearly 300% more protein than fresh chicken.
The third ingredient is turkey meal, another protein-rich meat concentrate.
The fourth ingredient includes potatoes. You can consider potatoes as a gluten-free source of digestible carbohydrates. Yet with the exception of perhaps their caloric content, potatoes are of only modest nutritional value to a dog.
The fifth ingredient includes peas. Peas are a quality source of carbohydrates. And like all legumes, they’re rich in natural fiber.
The sixth ingredient is potato protein, the dry residue remaining after removing the starchy part of a potato.
The seventh ingredient is chicken fat. In order to obtain chicken fat, meat needs to be rendered. This is done using a similar process to making soup. The fat itself is skimmed from the surface of the liquid.
Chicken fat is high in linoleic acid, an omega-6 fatty acid essential for life. Although it doesn’t sound very appetizing, chicken fat is actually a quality ingredient.
The eighth ingredient is dried ground potato. A dehydrated item usually made from the by-products of potato processing. In most cases, dried potato can contain about 10% dry matter protein which can affect our estimate of the total meat content of this recipe.
The ninth ingredient is tomato pomace. Tomato pomace is a controversial ingredient. This is a by-product remaining after processing tomatoes into juice, soup, and ketchup.
From here, the list goes on to include a number of other items. Ingredients located this far down the list (other than nutritional supplements) are not likely to affect the overall rating of this product.

Four notable exceptions

As you might know, Salmon oil is naturally rich in the prized EPA and DHA type of omega-3 fatty acids. These two high quality fats boast the highest bio-availability to dogs and humans.
You should consider salmon oil as a commendable addition. Of course, this depends on its level of freshness and purity.
Next, flaxseed is one of the best plant sources of healthy omega-3 fatty acids. Provided they’ve first been ground into a meal, flax seeds are also rich in soluble fiber.
However, flaxseed contains about 19% protein. You should consider this factor when judging the actual meat content of this dog food.
In addition, chicory root is rich in inulin. This is a starch-like compound made up of repeating units of carbohydrates and found in certain roots and tubers.
Not only is inulin a natural source of soluble dietary fiber, it’s also prebiotic used to promote the growth of healthy bacteria in a dog’s digestive tract.
And lastly, this food contains chelated minerals, minerals that have been chemically attached to protein. This makes them easier to absorb. You will usually find chelated minerals in better dog foods.

A Final Word

We are very happy with Wellness Core Grain Free Dry Dog Food Puppy Formula – Cheepsus has grown strong, healthy and very well built. His coat is shiny and very soft – everybody who pets him acknowledges this.
We are going to keep Cheepsus on this kibble for another four months, till he is one year old. Then we will switch to adult dog food. I will use the same website to find next kibble for him. So come back to follow-up.
Leave a comment below about your puppy’s favorite food.
Cheepsus on his first day at home

New Puppy Supply List: Things You Will Need Before Puppy Comes to Your Family

New Puppy Supply List: Things You Will Need Before Puppy Comes to Your Family

It is very exciting to bring your new puppy home for the first time. In order for everything to go as smooth as possible here is a new puppy supply list. Check out other posts reviewing each item separately.

Essential Items

  1. Food bowl. This is going to be your pups favorite item of all. As labradors eat really fast it might upset their tummy, we recommend getting a slow feeder bowl. We started with 2PET Slowly Bowly but recently upgraded to a bigger one Slow Feeder Dog Bowl by Outward Hound.
  2. Water bowl. We chose ceramic bowl as it is more stable and as it is heavy it is difficult to flip over Signature Housewares City Pets Dog Bowl.
  3. Food Wellness CORE Natural Dry Grain Free Puppy Food, Chicken & Turkey.
  4. If you are planning to crate, it is best to get a large size crate with a divider, so you can adjust crate’s size as the puppy grows MidWest Dog Crate. More info about crate training can be found here.
  5. Collar and leash. It is a must to have as you will have to walk your puppy and start training from early days: Blueberry Pet Solid Color Collar and Blueberry Pet Classic Solid Color Dog Leash.
  6. Kongs to keep your puppy busy while you are away or not playing Puppy KONG ToyKONG Puppy Tires.
  7. Poop bags, you will need a lot! Gorilla Supply 1000 Pet Poop Bags w Free Dispenser.

Additional Items That Will Make Your Life Easier

  1. Treats. You will find a huge variety of treats. So it is up to you what to get, but we are using these right now: Beef Bone Natural Dog Treat, Old Mother Hubbard Crunchy Classic Natural Dog Treats.
  2. Pet stain and odor eliminator. This will be your # 1 item for the first couple weeks Nature’s Miracle 3-in-1 Odor Destroyer.
  3. Mat. Labradors are messy. A lot. We started with Snug Pet Feeding Mat for Dog, but recently upgraded to Mr. Peanut’s Anti-Slip Multi-Purpose Tray & Pet Feeding Mat.
  4. Bedding. You want your puppy to feel comfortable, choose something that fits your budget BRINDLE Soft Memory Foam Dog Bed with Removable Washable Cover or OxGord Orthopedic Pet Bed Foam-Mattress for Dogs.
  5. Seat cover to keep your car clean as you will have to take your puppy to a vet or to some amazing trips AmazonBasics Waterproof Hammock Seat Cover for Pets.
  6. Toys, chews. Labradors are heavy chewers so it is a good idea to stock on some antlers Deer Antler Pieces and some other toys.


Books for additional information on puppy care and training. You should start training your puppy from the very first day they come to your home:

  1. The Happy Puppy Handbook: Your Definitive Guide to Puppy Care and Early Training.
  2. 101 Dog Tricks: Step by Step Activities to Engage, Challenge, and Bond with Your Dog.

Final Words

Create your own checklist from this new puppy supply list, and you will be sure that you are very well prepared for a new family member.

This is our yellow lab puppy Cheepsus on his first day at his new home.

Cheepsus on his first day at home