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New baby onboard? Good for you! Enjoy the most amazing adventure in your life. Before little bundle of joy is due, the “to do’s” might seem infinite.
There is also an important item to add to the list….Don’t forget your four-legged “baby” at home… if you got one.
Preparation for the smooth transition is an important task. Cats and Dogs are particularly sensitive to any changes in surroundings and routines, including smells and sights, so you’ll have to plan for that reason.
Pets And New Borns
The odds are, your pets might have sensed it. When your bump grows, your pet will perhaps get a signal of what’s going on. After all, they’re baby-makers too.
That doesn’t mean they won’t be envious, particularly if they’ve been the only “babies” in your life before the new ‘normal’ baby.
There is a lot of anecdotal evidence that suggests that cats and dogs know a new baby is on the way, this is not to say that they have any concept of what is to come.
Until sometime in the past, they got more attention when they were mischievous. Everything is going to change.
Priorities will change as baby’s requirements will come first, so often the pets are not fed as per their needs; perhaps they even miss meals and no time for owners to take them for daily walks.
Some cats and dogs muddle through the change; they are generally interested in what is going on around them and take it all in their stride.
They aren’t overly worried about missing a walk or meals as they enjoy the personal time or they chase the birds in the garden.
These guys seem to cope very well with new babies; the issues they face later on such as the ‘pack order starts to change with the introduction of kids’ can be managed quite easily.
Most of the pets don’t manage very well. The best thing to do is to help prepare them for this big change. From a pet’s point of view, Parents should consider what their new domestic life is going to be.
So it’s a good idea is to know what the facts and fallacies are. Then, start training your pet for the arrival of a baby months before birth.
My Pet Is Already Well-Behaved
Even the most dutiful and trained dog or cat may freak out when an infant suddenly emerges into their environment without proper preparation.
Set the stage for your pet to make a positive correlation with the baby by training your pet with helpful new commands and boundaries.
Teach New Rules
Several weeks prior to baby’s arrival, start prepping with new rules such as “Go away!” command.
It would be best to set right any lagging behavioral issues before the arrival of the baby – and don’t be surprised if you have to make a quick visit to the instructor down the lane as well.
Introduce Baby Stuff And Smells
Allow your pet to explore potentially creepy Items! Like the diapers, stroller, the jumper, and as many other items.
Try letting them sniff the new stuff you’re buying for baby (powders, lotions, etc) to get familiarized to the new aromas as possible and to help them tackle any fear before the arrival of the baby.
It isn’t fair to come home from hospital with a new baby one day and abruptly shut your dog away outdoors.
Teach your dog that the nursery is off-limits now so the dog doesn’t think the change in a territory or sudden restricted access has anything to do with the baby.
I Will Give My Pet Extra Attention Whenever I Get Time After The Baby Comes
This sounds really impractical. You might be thinking to give as much cuddle time as possible before baby changes the scenery (this should be hard!).
But slow and steady change is much easier on the pet than just cutting them off when you bring home your child.
Taper Off Attention From Your Pet
We usually don’t have much time to spend with our pet after the baby arrives, so try to adjust to that and teach your pets so it won’t be such a shock to your pets and at the very least, will confuse it.
Mirror The Attention Your Pet Will Get When Baby Arrives
It may seem counter-intuitive give him more of your time now since you know there will be less time later.
But it’s good for the dog if the changeover happens step by step, so cut down walks and play time gradually before baby’s arrival.
Make little changes, one at a time. If you change everything at once when the baby gets home, the dog will correlate changes with the baby and may feel indignant.
My Pet Is In Top-Notch Shape And Health
Consult with your Vet before the baby arrives to make sure your pet is in best shape and void of any dangerous bugs or parasites.
All together, stop at the groomer’s as well and get pets a “pet-icure” to steer clear of any accidental scratches.
It’s commonly known that expectant mothers have to keep away from the cat litter box as the feces can be unsafe. The parasite Toxoplasma Gondii in feces can result in toxoplasmosis.
Due to the established immunity in adults, this disease does not pose a serious threat to them but the newborn kids can suffer greatly.
Once the baby is born – Cat owners must continue to take precautions and should wear gloves always when changing the litter, thoroughly wash hands and Make sure to keep your baby away from the cat box.
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My Pet Has Never Been Aggressive
Virtually every single cat or dog will display warning signs of aggression before nipping or attacking, it’s just up to pet parents to read the signs.
Identify Problem Areas And Stop Potential Problems Before They Escalate
We need our dogs to learn English, but not often do we learn the dog’s language – and that’s just not fair. It’s important to start thinking about possible issues, such as sleeping places, meals time, furniture use, exercise times, etc.
Redistribute The Attention
As we mentioned earlier you’ll possibly be spending lesser time doting the pets when the baby’s around. Gradual change is a lot easier on a pet rather than just cutting it out.
Seek the help of your partner or anyone in the house or friends by forming a stronger relationship with the pets, redistributing a bit of the attention rather than cutting them off.
My Baby And My Pet Will Be Best Buds!
Introduce Other Babies
Invite over family members and friends with babies so your dog at least has some experience with these small, loud creatures.
Just as you teach your pet to respect your baby, teach your growing babies to respect your pet
With the right information, if you prepare your pet to get down on the right paw, there’s no need for any dilemma or the hard decision of choosing between your actual baby and your fur baby.
In no time, they can grow up to be best buds…. you’ll be posing your baby and your pet for lovable Instagram-ready pics!