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How to Find Used Dog Supplies: 6 Vet-Approved Options

Written by: Keri-Beth Clur

Last Updated on June 25, 2024 by Dogster Team

jack russell terrier dog in a pet store

How to Find Used Dog Supplies: 6 Vet-Approved Options

VET APPROVED

Dr. Ashley Darby Photo

REVIEWED & FACT-CHECKED BY

Dr. Ashley Darby

BVSc (Veterinarian)

The information is current and up-to-date in accordance with the latest veterinarian research.

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If you’ve got a new puppy, you’ve probably got a long list of items that you need to get them. Dog crates, toys, beds, bowls, and playpens can all add up to a hefty price. Puppies also grow so quickly that their crate will be too small for them in a matter of months. If you’re trying to save on costs or try to live a zero-waste lifestyle, finding used dog supplies is the way to go. But where do you start?

Start by asking friends and family members to pass on their secondhand dog supplies to you, as this usually won’t cost you anything. Otherwise, look on sites like eBay or Facebook Marketplace. Secondhand stores, garage sales, and flea markets are also great spots to pick up used supplies that your dog can benefit from.

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The 6 Options to Find Used Dog Supplies

1. Friends and Family

Image Credit: Veja, Shutterstock

One of the best places to find used dog supplies are your friends and family. Not only will the items most likely be free or cost less than secondhand stores, but you’ll personally know the dog you’re getting them from.

This information is important because it helps you know who to accept supplies from and whose supplies you should avoid. Supplies from dogs who have been sick recently, have had parvovirus, or are riddled with fleas may bring unwanted viruses or parasites into your home. When you buy supplies from strangers, you may not get as much information from them about their hygiene levels and the health of their dog, so err on the side of caution when taking in pre-loved goods.

Pros
  • More affordable
  • You’ll know the health of the dog the items belonged to
Cons
  • None

2. eBay

woman shopping online on her laptop with her dog
Image Credit: Michaelvbg, Shutterstock

eBay offers a large selection of secondhand dog supplies for you to choose from. You can compare prices and pick the best deals between similar options. eBay is easy to use because after you create your account, all you need to do is type in the name of the supplies you’re in need of and scroll through the various options until you find the ones you like.

Although eBay has a few scammers, they do try to clean up their site by creating security checks and disabling untrustworthy accounts. Unfortunately, some scammers slip through, so it’s important to look at the seller’s feedback ratings before you go ahead with the transaction.

Pros
  • There is a large selection of dog supplies
  • You can compare prices
  • It’s easy to use
Cons
  • It’s not free from scammers

3. Facebook Marketplace

female owner of welsh pembroke corgi dog using mobile phone
Image Credit: SeventyFour, Shutterstock

Facebook is an easy way to get used dog supplies from people in your community. Most items are affordable, and you have the opportunity to negotiate the price down if you think it has been listed for too high a price. The supplies you buy also won’t come in any packaging, which lowers waste. Another benefit to using Facebook Marketplace is that you can go through the different options available and pick out the ones you like most. Sometimes, you may even find something unique that not many other people will own.

The downside is that you’ll most likely have to meet somewhere for the exchange to take place, so it’s not as convenient as ordering online and having the items shipped to your door. However, it could be arranged if the seller is open to it. Secondly, it is a more unreliable option as the seller may never reply to your message or fail to meet up.

Pros
  • Easy to use
  • You’re able to negotiate prices
  • Packaging-free
  • More likely to find something unique
Cons
  • It’s not as convenient
  • It can be unreliable

4. Secondhand Stores

young woman and her dog in pet store
Image Credit: ALPA PROD, Shutterstock

If you enjoy in-person shopping, you may enjoy looking for dog supplies at secondhand stores rather than online. Secondhand stores resell items that have been used by previous owners and are no longer needed. Secondhand stores are much cheaper than stores that sell new items. You’ll find all sorts of things for your dog in these stores, from bowls to winter jerseys. The downside is that you may not find something in your dog’s size as there usually aren’t multiples of the same items.

Secondhand stores are a great way to have a shopping experience without supporting the production of new goods, which creates pollution. However, they can be time-consuming because you have to search through a lot of stuff—and you may not find what you’re looking for.

Pros
  • It offers an in-person experience
  • Items are cheaper than stores that sell new goods
  • Environmentally friendly
Cons
  • You may not find the right size for your dog
  • Time-consuming

5. Flea Markets

dog sitting at a market
Image Credit: Phe O’Leary, Shutterstock

You can find unique, alternative dog supplies at your local flea markets. The great thing about flea markets is that there will be several vendors that sell similar products, so you can compare prices and designs and choose the dog supplies you like best.

Although dog supplies will typically be cheaper at flea markets than pet stores, especially if they’re secondhand, it’s an environment where you’re allowed to negotiate the final price of the items. Because this option is in-person, you’ll have the opportunity to chat with the vendors, develop a relationship, and buy secondhand items from them again in the future. They may even be willing to keep items you want aside for you.

Unfortunately, if your item falls apart after one use, you won’t have anyone to return it to because you may never see that vendor again.

Pros
  • Various options to compare
  • You’re able to negotiate the final price
  • You can develop a relationship with the vendor
Cons
  • You may end up with a bad product
  • You may never find a particular vendor again

6. Garage Sales

Various things placed on table and chairs in a garage sale
Image Credit: Pressmaster, Shutterstock

Garage sales give you the opportunity to find unique items for your dog. However, items may go quickly, and there is usually only one of each, so if you want to find anything good, you need to go early. Garage sales allow you to physically examine the dog supplies you’re interested in so you can look for wear and tear and not be surprised when you return home with a torn leash or scratched food bowl.

Unfortunately, dog supplies that you buy from garage sales won’t have a warranty, and you can’t return them. Secondhand items have already been used, and you won’t know for how long, so they may break or fall apart soon after your purchase.

There is also a high chance that you will come away from the garage sale empty-handed because they won’t have anything you’re looking for, or the items won’t meet the quality standard you might be wanting.

Pros
  • They often have unique items
  • You can physically examine the items
Cons
  • Good items get taken quickly
  • Items won’t have a warranty and can’t be returned
  • They may not have any of the dog supplies you’re looking for
  • The quality standard of the items may not meet your expectations

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Is It Safe to Use Secondhand Dog Supplies?

Although there is nothing wrong with giving your dog used dog supplies, it is important to take a few precautions. Firstly, when deciding between two items, opt for the more hygienic one. Secondly, you need to clean and disinfect all dog supplies you get to make sure any parasites and pet diseases aren’t transferred into your home.

If you buy a secondhand crate or dog carrier, look over it well and make sure that it’s in good condition. It should be secure and have all its screws and handles. A few scratches are fine, but make sure there are no cracks or holes in the items.

Avoid secondhand plastic bowls as bacteria and debris can hide in the scratches. Instead, opt for metal or ceramic options.

puppy in a dog crate
Image Credit: sophiecat, Shutterstock

How to Clean Used Dog Supplies

All used dog supplies must be cleaned and disinfected because you don’t know what illness the previous dog may have had or whether they were infested with fleas. By bringing these items into your dog’s environment, you’re exposing them to whatever bacteria and germs the previous dog may have had, so clean them first.

If the items you bought still have their labels on them, follow the recommended cleaning instructions for each thing. However, most secondhand dog supplies won’t have their labels, so you can follow the instructions below:

  • Wash all crates, solid toys, and bowls with clean, warm, soapy water. Once you’ve rinsed and dried the items, disinfect them with bleach or another disinfectant product. If you use bleach, make sure you thoroughly rinse it off the items, as any residue left behind can cause skin irritation for your dog.
  • You can wash any soft toys, blankets, bedding, rope toys, and clothes in the washing machine.
  • After washing and rinsing your dog’s supplies, you can leave them out in the sun to dry. The sun will kill any germs still present.
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Conclusion

There are many great places to look for secondhand dog supplies. You can search online on eBay and Facebook Marketplace or at your local secondhand stores, garage sales, and flea markets. One of the best places to get secondhand items is your friends and family because they will likely be free or cost a low amount. You’ll also know the dog you’re getting the supplies from, as well as whether they’ve been ill recently.

Always wash and disinfect any secondhand items you bring home for your dog to kill any potential parasites and bacteria.


Featured Image Credit: Bussakorn Ewesakul, Shutterstock

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