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If you’re a fur parent and expecting or planning on having a baby soon, you need to think ahead on how you can introduce your future baby to your dog. Your fur baby has been used to being your number one fur child. If someone else takes that attention away from him/her, it could greatly affect your dog’s emotional well-being. But there are simple measures you can take to ensure that you can safely introduce your fur baby to the new baby in the household.
Tip #1: Take Things Slow
Having a new baby at home will be a huge change not just for you, but for your fur baby as well. There will be all kinds of new sights. scents and sounds that your dog will be unfamiliar with. It’s important to slowly introduce your baby to your dog even before the baby arrives. You can even go as far as carrying a baby doll around in a stroller and letting your dog smell baby lotion.
Another tip is to let your dog be surrounded by other babies. Perhaps introducing your dog to babies and kids around the neighborhood would help. This will allow your dog to get more accustomed to babies and will reduce his/her level of anxiety when your baby arrives at home.
Once your baby comes home, let your dog sniff your baby first and shower your dog with treats while they’re at it. It’s best to keep your baby at a safe distance first to avoid any sudden movements from your dog. Taking things slow is key and you want your dog to get slowly accustomed to having a new human being at home.
Tip #2: Set Proper Boundaries
Dogs have a strong sense of territory. So when they know that they’re not supposed to enter a place, they understand that. It’s best to train your dog to stay away from certain areas such as your baby’s bedroom and other rooms used by your baby. You wouldn’t want your dog and your baby alone in a room unsupervised, especially in the beginning. And despite training, make sure to always monitor your dog’s whereabouts. It’s better to be safe than sorry.
Additionally, since you have now established dog-free areas, be sure to have baby-free areas for your dog to enjoy as well. This will act as your dog’s comfort zone so that he can act however he likes without having to worry about the baby.
One last thing to separate is your baby’s feeding space. If there are places where you and your dog used to make fun memories together, avoid feeding your baby in those areas as your dog could get jealous. The last thing you want your dog to feel is that he/she is getting replaced.
Tip #3: Allocate Play Time With Your Dog
Your pets will always consider you as their fur parents. Their love for you is unconditional, so it’s only natural that they will still want your attention. Yes, babies are a handful, but you still need to let your fur baby know that they’ll always be loved no matter what. This means that you still need to set time during the day to give undivided attention to your dog. Even if it’s just a 10-15 minute session. Keep it brief but do it on a regular basis.
Do take note however that your dog will always be seeking your attention. You need to have the discipline to not give into them whenever they demand it. Eventually, they will understand that they cannot always get what they want and trust that you will allocate time for them later.
Now that you have two babies at home, you need to take extra precaution if you want them to get along eventually. Your baby and your dog will be living together for the next few years, so you’ll definitely want to take note of these tips to ensure that they have a harmonious relationship together.