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Pets & Bringing baby home

Posted by on Jun. 3, 2015 at 1:00 PM
  • 12 Replies
I am due in the next 5 weeks. We have a boxer at home. She is protective now. We have a 9&7 at home.

I have never brought a newborn home with a pet at home.

any suggestions?
by on Jun. 3, 2015 at 1:00 PM
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Replies (1-10):
Ferngully549
by Member on Jun. 3, 2015 at 1:41 PM

The way I did it before was the same way as introducing another pet to the pet. Keep them separate but allow the baby to be visible. Let them see they're there but can't get close. When they get close act like it's a treat for them to be able to get close, and they will not see it as any kind of threat. Show immediate consequence for even the slightest aggression. If that means growling through a gate then shove them outside and have them wait it out for a while then try again. If they do well then praise praise praise! Fawn over them and how well they are doing! Celebrate it like it's nothing they've ever had celebrated before! Dogs respond better to positive than negative, just like most kids, and also need immediate appreciation, not after the fact or later. 

This was my approach and it worked very well when I brought my son home over 6 years ago. Different dogs than what I have now, it was a family member I was staying with briefly, but it worked really well. 

MamaBearEH
by Silver Member on Jun. 3, 2015 at 2:47 PM

You need to ensure that your dog's place in the family isn't threatened.  So avoid shooing her away if she comes to see you, putting her outside more, putting her in the crate more, and make sure you continue to put aside quality time for you and the dog.  You can let your dog know when she's having inappropriate behavior without banishing her outside or physically punishing her.

The most important thing I can stress is not doing a forcible introduction to baby.  Allow your dog to see the baby, and allow her to come to you with the baby of her own accord.  Don't call or coax her over with words of praise or treats.  If that takes her three weeks to do that's fine - don't worry.  In the same respect you need to allow her to get close.  Not allowing her to get close when she is ready will make your dog feel neglected, like she's lost her place in the family, anmd this can encourage domineering agressive behavior towards you and your child.  On that note, don't allow her to place herself between you and your baby.  Always beside.

Read our weekly pregnancy journal for...
27 | 28 | 29 | 30 | 31 | 32 | 3334 | 35 | 36 | 37 | 38 | 39 | 40 | 41 | BIRTH

a06z08mama
by Bronze Member on Jun. 3, 2015 at 3:50 PM
She definitely knows something is going on. More and more lately, she has been by my side. I'm not sure if she is getting anxiety, but there was one day I was gone longer than normal. And she had a look of relief when I got home. So I have told hubby that he will need to bring her for a visit, just so she knows I am ok.

I think she will do ok.

Does the whole take a blanket home from hospital with baby smell work?

Quoting MamaBearEH:

You need to ensure that your dog's place in the family isn't threatened.  So avoid shooing her away if she comes to see you, putting her outside more, putting her in the crate more, and make sure you continue to put aside quality time for you and the dog.  You can let your dog know when she's having inappropriate behavior without banishing her outside or physically punishing her.

The most important thing I can stress is not doing a forcible introduction to baby.  Allow your dog to see the baby, and allow her to come to you with the baby of her own accord.  Don't call or coax her over with words of praise or treats.  If that takes her three weeks to do that's fine - don't worry.  In the same respect you need to allow her to get close.  Not allowing her to get close when she is ready will make your dog feel neglected, like she's lost her place in the family, anmd this can encourage domineering agressive behavior towards you and your child.  On that note, don't allow her to place herself between you and your baby.  Always beside.

a06z08mama
by Bronze Member on Jun. 3, 2015 at 3:53 PM
I've only introduced cats to cats. So the dog part is new to me. Well did try introducing my cats to her but my fat cat wanted no part of it and just hid the whole time she was there.

She is an older boxer, so I'm hoping she does ok.

Quoting Ferngully549:

The way I did it before was the same way as introducing another pet to the pet. Keep them separate but allow the baby to be visible. Let them see they're there but can't get close. When they get close act like it's a treat for them to be able to get close, and they will not see it as any kind of threat. Show immediate consequence for even the slightest aggression. If that means growling through a gate then shove them outside and have them wait it out for a while then try again. If they do well then praise praise praise! Fawn over them and how well they are doing! Celebrate it like it's nothing they've ever had celebrated before! Dogs respond better to positive than negative, just like most kids, and also need immediate appreciation, not after the fact or later. 

This was my approach and it worked very well when I brought my son home over 6 years ago. Different dogs than what I have now, it was a family member I was staying with briefly, but it worked really well. 

Ferngully549
by Member on Jun. 3, 2015 at 3:56 PM

I should say, my advice worked awesome for me and my situation, but every dog is different. The other poster replied with good advice too. We may have been a little over-cautious because this was not actually *my* dog, so it wasn't as comfortable for me or the dog as it would have been if it was a beloved family pet. 

Like every situation, it depends on the dog, in the end. I have 2 lab/mastiff sisters that I will be introducing a baby to in November. My worry is that they are SO excited ALL the time, they love everyone, and will be a little too hyper for the baby. I won't have to worry about the aggression part whatsoever. But one thing I definitely agree with the other poster, make sure the dog is always beside, not in between. 

Quoting a06z08mama: I've only introduced cats to cats. So the dog part is new to me. Well did try introducing my cats to her but my fat cat wanted no part of it and just hid the whole time she was there. She is an older boxer, so I'm hoping she does ok.
Quoting Ferngully549:

The way I did it before was the same way as introducing another pet to the pet. Keep them separate but allow the baby to be visible. Let them see they're there but can't get close. When they get close act like it's a treat for them to be able to get close, and they will not see it as any kind of threat. Show immediate consequence for even the slightest aggression. If that means growling through a gate then shove them outside and have them wait it out for a while then try again. If they do well then praise praise praise! Fawn over them and how well they are doing! Celebrate it like it's nothing they've ever had celebrated before! Dogs respond better to positive than negative, just like most kids, and also need immediate appreciation, not after the fact or later. 

This was my approach and it worked very well when I brought my son home over 6 years ago. Different dogs than what I have now, it was a family member I was staying with briefly, but it worked really well. 


Armymom134
by Silver Member on Jun. 3, 2015 at 4:51 PM

 I am in the same boat, we have 2 cats and a dog, the dog was a rescue and once we got her home after observing her behavior for a few months we figured out she had been abused. She would growl at my 3 y, o and snap at him, I finally told DH either he works with her and she has consequences for her behavior or she has to go. She is better now and more tollerant of my 3 yo but I am still very very anxious and worried about bringing baby home. DH and I have had a talk about this and considering the dog's behavior previously I told DH one growl or nip and she has to go, I won't put my baby in danger. I'm really hoping she does alright with the baby though, I'm probably just worrying too much for my own good.

PortlandJane
by Bronze Member on Jun. 3, 2015 at 5:34 PM

<3 <3 <3 THIS REPLY!!!!!!  I'm a vet tech with my first pregnancy, but this is what we advise in clinics!!!!!  

I cannot stress enough, ESPECIALLY WITH DOGS, that you need to make time for them.  Even if it's just when SO comes home they get baby and you take dog on a walk.  She'll know you aren't feeling well and it will worry her so you'll have to take time to reassure her you are ok.  I really advise NOT doing this with the baby because dogs can get a little bouncy while doing this.  Most dogs who get clingy as you get more pregnant know there's a baby in there and will become protective of the baby because they know it is yours.  There are plusses and minusses to this.  Especially when they are learning to walk and they are stubbling/crying.  I had a friend who the dog broke the coffee table after the baby toddled into it! LOL  

With cats it's tricky.  They hide with scary changes, and a screaming infant is loud and smelly.  If that's not the definition of scary for a cat, I don't know it.  Make sure you take time, away from baby, for cats.  I'm a big fan of brushing my kitties when I get out of the shower, until later notice that will be a solo event so that shall be their safe time.  I have 2 cats I know will be terrified but they don't really get aggressive so I'm not too worried about them, they'll innitiate when ready.  My 3rd (my first fur baby) is MY cat.  My husband wanted me to get him certified as a therapy pet he knows me that well, and he's been clininging to my 9 week belly like no body's business.  He does get aggressive when he's worried.  And even worse, he investigates!!!  He nibbles and paws at things he doesn't understand.  I have nightmares of him lay down on the baby to get it to shush so I can sleep...  But he may totally be a dog, too, and be like "that's an extention of mom so I need to keep it safe." ;)  

Man it's weird what I stress about now that I'm pregnant...

Quoting MamaBearEH:

You need to ensure that your dog's place in the family isn't threatened.  So avoid shooing her away if she comes to see you, putting her outside more, putting her in the crate more, and make sure you continue to put aside quality time for you and the dog.  You can let your dog know when she's having inappropriate behavior without banishing her outside or physically punishing her.

The most important thing I can stress is not doing a forcible introduction to baby.  Allow your dog to see the baby, and allow her to come to you with the baby of her own accord.  Don't call or coax her over with words of praise or treats.  If that takes her three weeks to do that's fine - don't worry.  In the same respect you need to allow her to get close.  Not allowing her to get close when she is ready will make your dog feel neglected, like she's lost her place in the family, anmd this can encourage domineering agressive behavior towards you and your child.  On that note, don't allow her to place herself between you and your baby.  Always beside.


PortlandJane
by Bronze Member on Jun. 3, 2015 at 5:38 PM
1 mom liked this

It sounds like your dog like to have control of the touch he/she is given.  That's really hard with small children.  In situations like this, I've usually recommended that they don't have any unsupervised time together.  Usually it's not an inssue until baby is mobile, then you have to worry about baby using the dog to stand up or trying to taste the dog.  Baby gates are usually enough to keep them apart.  Dog can have its own space and baby is safe.  

Quoting Armymom134:

 I am in the same boat, we have 2 cats and a dog, the dog was a rescue and once we got her home after observing her behavior for a few months we figured out she had been abused. She would growl at my 3 y, o and snap at him, I finally told DH either he works with her and she has consequences for her behavior or she has to go. She is better now and more tollerant of my 3 yo but I am still very very anxious and worried about bringing baby home. DH and I have had a talk about this and considering the dog's behavior previously I told DH one growl or nip and she has to go, I won't put my baby in danger. I'm really hoping she does alright with the baby though, I'm probably just worrying too much for my own good.


MamaBearEH
by Silver Member on Jun. 3, 2015 at 5:52 PM

If you ask me that's a very bad idea unless you are providing it to the dog, when the baby is in sight, to smell before getting close enough to smell the child.  Again at the dog's leisure in order to ensure they are comfortable & not threatened.  Your baby will smell a bit like you and a bit like another person, and your dog (especially if well attached to you) will know that's a human scent there.  They need to be able to determine where the scent is coming from!

Spreading the scent of another person or animal around when the dog can't determine where it's coming from can really drive them insane.  They will be encouraged to bite, nip, paw, roll, and even mark/scent around the object to give it their own smell.  If they are protective and feel threatened they may even want to destroy it.  Even the most tame friendly dog will act on instict for self preservation if they feel threatened, and a lot of times people don't realise when they are putting a dog in that kind of situation.

Most dogs are great with little ones - especially the larger ones - despite our natural worry.  You just need to supervise, take it slow at the dog's lead, maintain they aren't being removed from the pack, and RESPECT the dog's nature.  I've done this with multiple children (inside and out of my family) and close to a dozen dogs.

And yes, dogs rely far more on senses than we do.  She knows there's something going on!

Quoting a06z08mama: She definitely knows something is going on. More and more lately, she has been by my side. I'm not sure if she is getting anxiety, but there was one day I was gone longer than normal. And she had a look of relief when I got home. So I have told hubby that he will need to bring her for a visit, just so she knows I am ok. I think she will do ok. Does the whole take a blanket home from hospital with baby smell work?
Quoting MamaBearEH:

You need to ensure that your dog's place in the family isn't threatened.  So avoid shooing her away if she comes to see you, putting her outside more, putting her in the crate more, and make sure you continue to put aside quality time for you and the dog.  You can let your dog know when she's having inappropriate behavior without banishing her outside or physically punishing her.

The most important thing I can stress is not doing a forcible introduction to baby.  Allow your dog to see the baby, and allow her to come to you with the baby of her own accord.  Don't call or coax her over with words of praise or treats.  If that takes her three weeks to do that's fine - don't worry.  In the same respect you need to allow her to get close.  Not allowing her to get close when she is ready will make your dog feel neglected, like she's lost her place in the family, anmd this can encourage domineering agressive behavior towards you and your child.  On that note, don't allow her to place herself between you and your baby.  Always beside.


Read our weekly pregnancy journal for...
27 | 28 | 29 | 30 | 31 | 32 | 3334 | 35 | 36 | 37 | 38 | 39 | 40 | 41 | BIRTH

a06z08mama
by Bronze Member on Jun. 3, 2015 at 7:15 PM
1 mom liked this
Hubby had her way before we got together. But she took to me as if I was there the whole time. The day I think this pregnancy implanted, she was all up on me. For a week n half after, wanted nothing to do with me. But now that it's at the end she has been up my butt again. So I'm hoping she will be ok when baby comes home. But I'd rather have some ideas of introducing baby to her. Than go at it blindly.

Quoting Ferngully549:

I should say, my advice worked awesome for me and my situation, but every dog is different. The other poster replied with good advice too. We may have been a little over-cautious because this was not actually *my* dog, so it wasn't as comfortable for me or the dog as it would have been if it was a beloved family pet. 

Like every situation, it depends on the dog, in the end. I have 2 lab/mastiff sisters that I will be introducing a baby to in November. My worry is that they are SO excited ALL the time, they love everyone, and will be a little too hyper for the baby. I won't have to worry about the aggression part whatsoever. But one thing I definitely agree with the other poster, make sure the dog is always beside, not in between. 

Quoting a06z08mama: I've only introduced cats to cats. So the dog part is new to me. Well did try introducing my cats to her but my fat cat wanted no part of it and just hid the whole time she was there.

She is an older boxer, so I'm hoping she does ok.

Quoting Ferngully549:

The way I did it before was the same way as introducing another pet to the pet. Keep them separate but allow the baby to be visible. Let them see they're there but can't get close. When they get close act like it's a treat for them to be able to get close, and they will not see it as any kind of threat. Show immediate consequence for even the slightest aggression. If that means growling through a gate then shove them outside and have them wait it out for a while then try again. If they do well then praise praise praise! Fawn over them and how well they are doing! Celebrate it like it's nothing they've ever had celebrated before! Dogs respond better to positive than negative, just like most kids, and also need immediate appreciation, not after the fact or later. 

This was my approach and it worked very well when I brought my son home over 6 years ago. Different dogs than what I have now, it was a family member I was staying with briefly, but it worked really well. 

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