When the baby comes home to a house where pets have lived, just some important things you may want to do before the baby arrives or comes home.
1. Make sure the animal, cat or dog is up to date on its shots and has visited the Veterinarian before the baby arrives, this is to insure man’s best friend and Morris are in good health.
2. Before baby arrives watch your animals, cat or dog for behaviors that aren’t becoming to them, such as jumping, scratching, and barking, for dogs, or taking up new sleeping arrangement in the baby’s new room, for cats. Train and retrain to alleviate these problems ahead of time.
3. Don’t change the rules, for you animals cat or dog, for example if man’s best friend sleeps in your bed or lounges on the couch, or if Morris enjoys a mid day nap smack dap in the middle of your bed, you can’t change the rules now. These rules should have been established in the training of your animals before you got pregnant, or knew you were expecting.
4. You can establish areas that will be off limits in advance, by putting up gates, or other barriers to keep animals, cat or dog out of. It is a little harder with Morris he can just climb up and over a safety gate, so maybe installing a screen door in the house to the baby’s bedroom, so the door can be open, and the cats can get use to the sounds of a baby.
5. Keep things positive with the animal, cat or dog. Animals as well as humans respond better with a nice calm voice and positive reinforcements, rather than screaming and yelling at your loving animal or family members.
6. Try and get your animal cat or dog accustomed to the sights and sounds of a new baby if they haven’t seen one, then invite friends over with babies, really there are also CD’s out there with babies crying this will also help man’s best friend and Morris adjust. Do this before they start howling in the middle of the night.
7. Walking is good exercise for you before and after the baby is born, it is also good for man’s best friend, and the baby could do with some fresh air as well, but teaching man’s best friend to walk with a stroller will take practice, before the baby arrives home, try and walk the dog with an empty stroller, this will help them and you to get used to both. Another thing if Man’s best friend had a special spot in the car and that is where the car seat is now going to be there, put it there before hand, and teaches them to set somewhere else.
8. Survey your home, keeping the area’s that has cat litter, pet food off limits with gate and barriers.
9. It is also important to manage the pet toys from baby’s toys. Some of them look alike, not only will man’s best friend or Morris have the problem telling them apart so will the baby. So keeping them in separate places will be a good idea.
10. Safety is big concern and should always be your first concern; you have to help Man’s best friend and Morris establish a bond between the animal and baby. Teaching the animal cat or dog to be a part of the family.
11. Never leave the animal pet or dog unattended with the baby it is not wise, it only take a second for something to happen. Just running into the next room to get a diaper, or to get the baby shampoo out of the bag that you forgot, practice taking everything with you, or the baby with you.
12. Teaching later on each to respect each other, no tail pulling, no licking in the face, teaching soft hands and to respect each other’s space, especially when the animals, cat or dog are eating, sleeping, or chewing on a bone or playing with their own toy. The presents of an animal cat or dog in the child life teaches them empathy and respect of a pets feelings.
My love for animals runs deep, always having them as well as children in the house, now with the new grand-daughter, the same rules also apply. Some animal cats or dogs won’t be as happy to see the new baby as you are, and they may shy off, snoop around, and have to get used to the new little person in the house. With time, the animal will get used to the new living arrangements and you will wonder what you were so worried about.
Some animal cat or dog are jealous, and want to be right in your lap, while your feeding the baby, don’t yell at them, calmly place them on the floor, and state no, or down. Don’t forget man’s best friend or Morris just because you have a new baby or grandchild. They were your baby before the baby, when you sat and watched TV stroking or petting your animal, when you cuddled them in the middle of the night, animals remember, don’t toss them aside.
Treating your animal cat or dog as before, if you talked to them, don’t stop, if you walked them don’t stop, if you took them for car rides don’t stop, all these things can be done with the new baby as well. The bond you have with your animal, cat or dog, should be seen by the baby, this will teach them how to talk and act around the animal.
Although some animals cat or dog don’t adapt well, and pet owners are forced to give them up, try everything first, work with the animal, praise, and use positive reinforcements, and maybe it will work out.