Many families have pets before the addition of a baby and those pets usually have had your undivided attention for some time. We understand that you may have concerns about how they will react to your new arrival
Just as you are preparing for the arrival of your baby, you will need to think about preparing your pet
Pet safety and babies top tips
- Ensure your pet is healthy and up to date with their vaccinations and checks.
- Try to get them ready for not being the centre of attention by gradually reducing the amount of attention you give them.
- Set boundaries. If you are thinking of having ‘pet free’ rooms when your baby arrives, get them used to this now; close doors or put up stair gates.
- Set up items for your baby early so they can be curious before you bring your baby home and get used to smells etc.
- Your house will most likely be quiet if this is your first baby, play audio of crying babies to get them used to the sound.
- Use rewards and treats to praise calm behaviour, ignore unwanted behaviours.
Pet and baby at home
When you bring your baby home it is going to be confusing for your pet.
- When you arrive home let your pet meet your baby when they are calm and relaxed. It is a good idea to let them smell baby’s clothes or a blanket and then gradually and gently show them your baby.
- Never leave your baby and pet unattended. Most accidents involving pets with young children happen when left together unattended.
- Exercise for dogs is really important. It not only keeps them fit, healthy and happy it also stops them from becoming bored and becoming destructive or showing unwanted behaviours. If family and friends offer to help out this is a great way to get them involved.
- Make sure your pet has a ‘safe place’ to go to retreat to if they are overwhelmed.