For most couples, their dog is their first baby, and while many dogs will accept a new baby without any problems, it’s important to prepare your fur baby for the new arrival.
The change of focus alongside the disruptions to your dog’s routine can be very unsettling. In this blog, we look at ways you can help prepare your dog for the changes ahead.
Before the arrival
Preparation should start as early as possible as gradual changes will be far easier for your dog to digest.
Regardless of how well trained your dog is, it may be an idea to visit a refresher course for basic training skills. You want to be sure that your dog fully understands basic commands for when the baby arrives.
Your dog will be used to a set routine with minimal changes when it comes to feeding, sleeping and walking. Start by gradually altering the times in which you feed and walk your dog, so that if baby causes a delay, your dog will be ok with the changes. The addition of a pram to your dog’s regular walk will help prepare your dog for the arrival of the baby.
Your dog has had your sole attention for the majority of its life. Gradually get your dog used to less attention, and more time on its own. It may be an idea to crate train your god if they have not done this before.
The home is about to get a whole lot noisier when the baby arrives. There are apps and cd’s available to help get your dog used to these changes. The gradual use of these noises will get your dog used to the new sounds and make they less likely to become agitated or distressed when they hear the baby cry.
Household Changes –
The layout of your home may change when the baby arrives. If you plan to have new pieces of furniture in the home, such as a Moses basket, bouncer, mat etc, it may be a good idea to have these out from as early as possible. This also allows you to train your dog to stay away from these objects if needed.
Does your dog currently have access to all areas of the home? If so, begin to exclude them from certain rooms, such as the new nursery. Start this process as early as possible, this way your dog will have little to no interest in the nursery when baby arrives. Remember to praise your dog when you leave the nursery and return to them in the rest of the house.
When baby arrives
Before you bring baby home, many experts suggest bringing home a used burp cloth or baby grow to get your dog used to the baby’s smell.
Mum should greet the dog before introducing the baby and spend some time alone with the dog too. Take your dog on a long walk to make sure they don’t have too much energy before the introduction.
To avoid over excitement or stress, the introduction of the baby should not be treated as an event. Simply carry the baby around, and gradually let the dog sniff and adjust. Ideally, the dog should not be overly fussed by the baby.
You are likely to have an abundance of visitors following the arrival of your baby. Where possible, ask that they greet the dog and give it a fuss before the baby.
Hopefully these tips will help prepare your dog for the new arrival.
We would love to see your photos and videos of your baby and Furbaby together. Please tag us on social media or email them to Hello@Buddies.co.uk.