Many first-time parents ask us this, but the answer isn't one they've given much thought to. You can't focus on anything else because you're concerned about yourself, your lover, and the baby. However, for your pets to be truly content in your company, they too will need to adjust. Here are some suggestions for easing the transition for your dogs.
Before Baby Comes
If you're pregnant and planning to start buying baby gear and changing furniture, your pet may sense that something is up and may become anxious or fearful.
Prepare Your Pet for Baby's Arrival
Despite our good fortune, you shouldn't walk into anything like this unprepared. In fact, the more preparation you put in before giving birth, the smoother the adjustment will be for everyone involved.
Make a Plan
First things first, whether your four-legged pet is a dog, cat, or something else, you need a strategy. While dogs are generally eager to please their owners, they may display jealousy because they're no longer the focus of attraction. This is also true of cats. Some cats are more adaptable than others, but cats in general tend to be temperamental.
Therefore, you should utilise the nine months of pregnancy to get your cat or dog ready for the new baby. Enroll Fido in training sessions and move Fluffy's trash bin to a more discreet spot. As quickly as possible, put up the nursery furnishings so your cat has many weeks to explore each table before you label it "off-limits."
Introduce Your Pet to Common Baby Sounds and Smells
All new babies make a lot of noise. After all, their tears are the only language they have to express pain, hunger, despair, or tiredness.
However, the additional activity may be too much for the pets at home. Anxiety, frustration, and agitation are all common in pets like dogs and cats. You can prepare your pet for the new baby's coming by exposing it to familiar sights, noises, and smells before the baby arrives. You may teach your animals to associate the sound of a baby's cry with a tasty food by playing them a recording of the sound.
Why? Because the loudness won't bother or frighten your pet in the least. She'll come to anticipate them as a signal for positive reinforcement, such as praise or a reward.
Changing Habits and Pet Care Duties
When your baby arrives, your whole world—including your pets'—will shift. Monthly walks may be shortened, mealtimes and playtime may shift, and the schedule is subject to change. Therefore, if you are going to be the primary caretaker for your child, you may want to start delegating these responsibilities to a loved one spouse or modifying your daily routine.
Before the arrival of the baby, introduce small modifications to your pet's routine or caretakers so that they don't identify the upcoming changes the with new arrival. There will be more than just a shift in routine, though.
To help your dog adjust to the new setup, try taking the stroller along on practise walks.
You'll be able to tackle problems with less anxiety now that there's no newborn involved. Having a dog sitter / walker help out can be a huge relief.
Establish New Rules
It's important to set limits before the baby is born. If you don't, your pet can start resenting your new child. If you are not feeling emotionally and sleep exhausted, it is much simpler to implement these principles in preparation.
Before the baby arrives, set the rules about your dog or cat not being allowed on the furnishings or the bed.
Teach your dog to keep her feet on the floor if you don't want her jumping up onto you while you're holding your newborn or cradling him in your lap.
To the same extent, if your pet has been accustomed to sleeping in our bed or bedroom and you wish for this to change, you should initiate the necessary modifications as soon as possible.
Bring Home Receiving Blankets or Onesies Your Baby Has Worn Before Discharge
Bringing home the baby's receiving sheet or first outfit is a classic and tried method of introducing your fur baby to the new human addition to the family. It's a good idea to let your pet smell the baby before you introduce them so that they can become used to the smell.
Expose Your Pet to Babies.
You may help your dog or cat adjust to the new sights, sounds, and smells of young children by inviting them over.
And even if your pet seems to really like infants, you should never, ever leave them alone together. The most placid of animals might yet surprise you at any moment.
Invest in Obedience Training.
You should enrol your dog in an obedience class regardless of whether or not he has had previous professional instruction.
By practising appropriate responses to commands like "drop it," "remain," and "down," he will be less likely to inadvertently cause harm to your child.
Jumping on the sofa, pouncing, or playing fiercely with his toys are all behaviours he should learn to kerb before the arrival of the baby, so it's important that he develops the habit of listening and obeying.
Preparing your pet for the arrival of a new baby in the home is important
Getting your pet acquainted to the routine of caring for a newborn infant can be accomplished by "playing" with a swaddled baby doll and "singing" to the doll, putting her to sleep, and changing her diaper.
In the comfort of your own home, you can also benefit from listening to a tape of a baby crying. Then, make all of these wonderful things happen for your four-legged kid by giving him a yummy treat or some time to play.
Change Up Your Sleeping Routine.
It's best to get your pet used to his new bed and sleeping location as soon as possible. Get him his favourite blankets, pillow, and toy and set up shop in a quiet area away from the baby.
Get your pet checked out by a vet.
Vaccinate your pet and make sure she doesn't have any parasites like fleas or ticks.
Inquire about a pill form or other approach that is efficient against these pests but safe for use with a baby from your vet.
Set Up Boundaries Around The Nursery.
If your infant has his or her own room, you should still encourage your pet to be out of there when you're not watching.
A baby gate that separates the space but yet lets him see and feel what's going on inside is one option to consider. If you're looking for baby nurseries products and furniture, be sure to browse our selection.
Do not expose your pet's food to the elements.
It's a good idea to relocate your pet's feeding and watering stations if they are currently in an area that your newborn will one day be able to access. You don't want her bothering your dog as he eats or trying to sample the kibble
Acclimate your pet to your patient's scent as soon as possible.
The sense of smell is a major source of information for both dogs and cats. Have your partner introduce your pet to the baby's scent through an unwashed article of clothing, such as a bodysuit or blanket, before you deliver the baby home.
This prepares him for the smell of your infant. To help them adjust to the new diapers, lotions, and powders you're purchasing for the baby, try giving them a whiff.
Have your partner carry the infant while you and the pet introduce yourselves.
The dog should be allowed to sniff the newborn Then, reward his good behaviour around the baby with a tasty snack so he may associate the positive response with positive feelings.
Construct Priceless Memories With Your Infant And Pet.
Demonstrate your new-mama multitasking skills by letting your dog or cat sit next to you as you nurse or playing with them while you cuddle your your baby. Also, make an effort to devote a minimum of five minutes of one-on-one time with your affection-seeking pet every day.
A Noise Should Be Made
Babies introduce their parents to an array of new noises. To assist your fur babies adjust to the new sounds in your home, try turning on the baby swing or other toys that produce noise
Set New Standards
Prepare them now for any upcoming rule changes, such as shifts in their access to the house.
Do Your Best to Ignore Them
Reduce your pet's attention now to help them adjust later when the baby arrives.
It's understandable if you want to spend as much time with your pet as possible before your new baby arrives, but remember that a gradual transition is much easier on your pet than a sudden one.
Your significant other can lend a hand by developing a deeper bond with the pets and sharing the care that you normally give to them.
Let the Infants In
Having friends bring over their newborns can help your pets adjust to the presence of a baby and provide you a chance to see how they interact with the young visitors.
It's crucial that you keep a tight eye on them.
Put an end to your bad practises immediately Pets should be taught to avoid potentially dangerous behaviours like jumping, swatting, and nibbling, as well as to stay off the crib and out of your lap. As a means of deterring their cats from jumping onto the crib or changing table, some mothers employ the use of aluminium foil or double-sided tape
Change Your Pet's Environment Gradually
Whether you're arranging your living room or setting up a baby's room, do it gradually to minimise stress on your pet.
Animals have a strong need for routine, and any change, no matter how minor, can cause them worry. When each section is complete, spend time playing with your pet there to reinforce pleasant associations with those places.
Block Off Rooms in Your House
It's a lot of work to keep an infant and some dogs under watch while you're home alone.
Installing gates or sealing off unused rooms are two simple ways to control this problem. Keep the door to the baby's sleeping area locked, whether it's your room or the nursery, to prevent your pets from entering.
If your pet is used to being by your side wherever you go and sleeping in your bed, you should get in the habit of keeping them apart in the days leading up to the birth of your child.
Baby Noises: Preparing Your Pet
Animals may become distressed by a baby's cries and screams, so it's important to be ready. You may find many helpful videos of infant sounds on YouTube. While you pet is eating or playing, play the recording softly. Raise the book a little higher each time until your pet is unfazed by the noise.
Prepare your pet for the arrival of the newborn by playing with baby toys and other noise-making equipment. Dogs and cats need to be acclimated to the scent of a newborn. Train your dog to associate the aroma of expensive baby goods like shampoo, lotion, and powder with a positive outcome. Even before they are born, your kid will begin to associate this with happiness.
Time to Get in Shape
Dog owners should enrol their pets in obedience school. When your dog is comfortable with the fundamentals, it's time to start working on those soon-to-be-familiar infant jobs. Do things like performing a down-stay while carrying a doll around as practise.
See a Vet
Make sure your pets are healthy and up-to-date on vaccines by taking them for a checkup at the vet well before baby arrives. Do not forget to make plans for your dogs' care while you are away giving birth!
Let go of your worries and know that everything will work well. It may take some time for everyone in the family to get adjusted to the new member, but they will.
After Baby Comes Home
Maintain as much of your pet's regular routine as possible.
Don't forget about Fido just because you're preoccupied with the new baby. While one person cares to the infant, the other can play with or stroll the child. Reduce your pet's anxiety when you have guests over by giving it a dose of calming pheromones and keeping it in a quiet room.
Never allow a young child to play unattended near a pet. Too many things might go wrong, and either you or the animal could end up harmed. The need for constant watchfulness increases as the baby develops into a mobile toddler. When you can't keep an eye on your kid, separate him or her from the pet
Make sure your pet is used to your baby's fragrance before you bring them inside. Take a blanket or an article of clothing home and let your pet explore it. Allow someone else to carry the baby while you calmly meet your pet upon your return home.
Allow your pet to sit next to the infant on the couch. Take the infant out of the room if things get really exciting for the dog or cat, rather than excluding the animal.
Having the right frame of mind with your pet is crucial at this time.
Get your pet back into a normal routine as soon as possible. If you've been letting him sit with you on the couch, please keep doing so. Also, try not to get too harsh on your cat every time he approaches the infant.
A crate can be a safe and comforting place for some dogs, but this should be a desire that was established before the baby came. Peterson warns against the potentially traumatic practise of confining the dog to a small space whenever the newborn is there.
Supervising Your Pet and Baby's Relationship
Babies' irregular motions and the unpredictable nature of animals can be very frightening to pets. Having your infant and household pet in same room necessitates your constant presence. Caution is necessary lest the cat accidentally lands on the infant's face. There is good reason for concern about dogs attacking infants; this concern must be handled by providing adequate supervision or, if necessary, by separating the infant and the dog.
When your child begins to crawl or walk, it is important to instil in them the habit of staying far away from the pet's toys, food dishes, and litter boxes.
Cats should be allowed access to the litter box, but young children should be kept out. Babies and toddlers often find great pleasure in eating things that adults would find repulsive.
Call the poison control centre immediately if your youngster ingests something they shouldn't have. You should prepare for this eventuality by having handy data on the type of litter used.
Having Another Baby
It's best to prepare your pet for a new baby every time one is on the way, even if they did OK after the birth from your first child.
Adding a second, three, or fourth child to the family will certainly shake things up. Always choose the option of providing a transition if in doubt. Searching for crib blankets. Do not bother looking any further. I've got you covered with my baby's nursery.
Getting a dog ready for a newborn requires time and energy, but it's time and energy carefully spent. In order to have a long and satisfying marriage together, it is important to plan ahead and choose the path of caution.
For your dogs to flourish in your company, they, too, will have to make some modifications. Dogs and cats, just like humans, can experience feelings of anxiety, impatience, and agitation. Your pet can be mentally and physically ready for the arrival of a new baby by being exposed to familiar sights, sounds, and smells in the weeks leading up to the birth. Every aspect of your life, even your pets, will change when the baby arrives. You may assist your dog get used to the new setup by taking it for practise walks in the stroller.
Pet owners often find great relief in the services of a dog sitter or dog walker. Having a pet that is obedient and listens to your directions is a must. The less likely he is to accidentally hurt your child by obeying your commands like "drop it," "stay," and "down," the more he will practise responding appropriately to these types of instructions. Provide him with his prefered bedding (blankets, pillow, and toy) and a quiet place to work (away from the baby). To assist your pets acclimatise to a new baby in the house, consider inviting some friends over who have recently given birth.
Try to spend at least five minutes of daily one-on-one time with your adoration-hungry pet. Your partner can help out by strengthening their connection with the animals. Animals are very routine-oriented; even small shifts in their daily schedule can make them anxious. Pets need to be taught not to do things like jump on people, swot them, or nibble on them, and also to refrain from using the crib or sitting on your lap. Take your pets in for a checkup and vaccinations well in advance of the baby's arrival to make sure they are healthy.
Giving your pet a dose of calming pheromones and putting it in a quiet room will help it feel more at ease while visitors are in the house. Teaching your baby to avoid the pet's toys, food, and litter boxes is a crucial habit to instil in them as soon as they can crawl or walk. Infants and toddlers often take great delight in consuming foods that would make an adult gag.
- We hope these tips help make the change less stressful for your dogs.
- So, use those nine months to prepare your cat or dog for the arrival of the new baby.
- Before the new baby arrives, you can help your pet adjust by reacquainting it with its usual environment.
- Small changes to your pet's routine or carers before the baby's arrival can help them adjust to the impending changes without associating them with the new arrival.
- Getting your pet ready for a new baby in the house is a must.
- To help your pet adjust to the routine of caring for a newborn, you can "play" with a swaddled baby doll, "sing" to the doll, put the doll to sleep, and change the doll's diaper to simulate the actions you would do with a real baby.
- If you have a pet at home, have your partner introduce it to the baby's aroma through an unwashed piece of clothing, like a bodysuit or blanket, before you bring the baby home.
- Introduce yourself and your pet while your partner carries the baby.
- Prove that you're a super mum by nursing and playing with your pet while cuddling your newborn.
- Whether it's your room or the nursery, always remember to lock the door to keep pets out.
- The introduction of baby toys and other noise-making equipment will help your pet adjust to the impending birth of the new baby.
- When bringing home a new baby, it's important to keep your pet on as close to their usual schedule as possible.
- Having your pet share the couch with your infant is perfectly acceptable.
- When you have your baby and family pet in the same room, you need to be there all the time.
- Teaching your baby to avoid the pet's toys, food, and litter boxes is a crucial habit to instil in them as soon as they can crawl or walk.
- Preparing a dog for a new baby is a labor-intensive process, but it is well worth the effort.
FAQs About New Baby Pets
Allow the pet to greet the mother before meeting the baby. Introduce pets and their new human siblings on neutral territory, such as outside on the sidewalk. Most importantly, each party should be secured — the pet on a leash or in some kind of container, the baby in a parent's arms.
When you bring a new baby home, your dog will face an overwhelming number of novel sights, sounds and smells. She may find some of them upsetting, especially if she didn't have opportunities to spend time with children as a puppy. You'll drastically alter your daily routine, so your dog's schedule will change, too.
Dogs are extremely loyal members of the family and just like humans they can experience a variety of different emotions - including jealousy. This can especially be the case when someone new becomes a member of the family, such as a newborn baby and seems to get all the attention and affection.
Once you and baby are back home, you'll want to officially introduce your dog or cat to the newest member of their family but the ASPCA recommends you wait, at least a few minutes. When you first arrive home from the hospital, greet your cat or dog in the same manner you always do
Dogs tend to be more protective of babies and small children as well, but that doesn't mean that dogs really understand what babies are or what we call them. Dogs can tell a difference, but they probably don't know just what a baby is.