How to Prepare Your Dog for a Baby

Being a dog owner is hard – but being a parent is even harder. Trying to juggle both of these responsibilities at the same time, however, generates a whole host of new issues. It’s not all doom and gloom, though; all you need is a little preparation. So, in this article, we’ll provide a list of tips on how to prepare your dog for a baby.

Obedience Training

Some owners let their dog colour outside the lines a little when it comes to obedience; it’s not the end of the world if your dog jumps up and no one else is around to see it. This has got to change when the baby arrives, though. If you haven’t already, you should definitely sign your dog up for some basic obedience training – even mildly excitable behaviour could scare or injure your baby.

Acclimatise Your Dog

When the baby finally arrives and begins its course to toddlerhood, it’s very likely she will become curious of your furry chum. Don’t fret, though, your dog just needs to acclimatise to your child’s new, uninhibited petting. If your dog’s not use to more physical games, slowly introduce heavier-handed patting around the mouth, ears and belly well before the due date.

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Privacy for Your Pooch

A baby’s first months are tough for parents, and for your dog. During this period, there may be occasions when your dog becomes distressed or too excited due to additional stimulation. In preparation for these situations, it’s a good idea to allocate a private spot for your dog, perhaps the kitchen or utility room, where they can cool down if necessary.

No Dogs Allowed

Although it’s important to establish a spot for your dog to have some privacy, it’s equally important that your baby’s nursery is – at first – off-limits. Your pooch may find all the changes going on somewhat overwhelming, but it’s vital that they respect your baby’s designated area. Over time, however, once they have followed the rules sufficiently, your dog can be reintroduced to the nursery.  

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Assimilate With Smell

Scent is a very important sense for dogs and, as such, your pet should become accustomed to the way your baby smells as early as possible. Take a handkerchief with your baby’s scent on it and allow your dog to sniff it. It’s crucial that you’re assertive during this process: your dog must treat this scent – and the baby that comes with it – with respect. When this is completed a number of times, your pooch will have built up a level of familiarity to your newborn and, when they finally meet, will feel less threatened.

Supervision!

Arguably the most important (and probably the most obvious) tip on the list is this: supervise your dog and baby when they’re together at all times! With this in mind, it’s probably worth keeping a closer eye on your pooch’s behaviour before they meet, allowing them to get used to your shorter leash.

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Jaycliffe Pets offer a top notch care service for your pets while you’re not around, including an exceptional grooming service. From daycare to long holidays, you can count on Jaycliffe Pets to provide your companions with the love they need. Based in Rotherham, our caring team live on site, so they’re always there for your pet when they need them. For more information, contact our friendly team today!