to not want him parenting my newborn with me?

(79 Posts)
WestieMamma Sun 12-May-13 18:02:24

Because he's such a know-it-all and I feel under so much scrutiny and pressure. The slightest peep out of the baby and he's there, giving me dirty looks for not responding quicker. He watches everything I do with a critical look on his face. He's even taken to supervising the baby when he sleeps and getting shirty with anyone close enough to disturb the sleeping baby.

I understand that he wants to be involved especially as he'll never be a parent himself (vet removed his bits after he tried to hump the postman), but AIBU to think he's taking it too far?

You will be so grateful when DC is a toddler and you don't have to worry about reins. Herding the family together is a skill you can't buy.

pictish Sun 12-May-13 18:04:06

LOL! grin

You totally had me there!

Tee2072 Sun 12-May-13 18:04:23


Saidar Sun 12-May-13 18:05:10

"getting shirty with anyone close enough to disturb the sleeping baby"

Is he doing this with immediate family (i.e. the pack as he sees it) or just with those coming to visit with whom he's not familier?

(Sorry I know this was meant to be lighthearted but the former's a worry the latter isn't)

Dog used to guard DS in his padding pool. Apparently I wasn't up to the job.

heronsfly Sun 12-May-13 18:06:55

grin what a lovely post.

CrowsLanding Sun 12-May-13 18:07:29

This has made me grin

WestieMamma Sun 12-May-13 18:12:52

Is he doing this with immediate family (i.e. the pack as he sees it) or just with those coming to visit with whom he's not familier?

He went totally beserk at the wasp which flew near the pram. I've never seen him so angry. So far humans just get dirty looks.

Booyhoo Sun 12-May-13 18:16:25


thebody Sun 12-May-13 18:18:19

Ah how sweet.

Saidar Sun 12-May-13 18:18:56

Aw Westie, sounds like you have a lovely wee dog there. Bless him.

It's nice when dogs take so well to new smalls coming into the house. Congrats btw.

In our house he takes a very dim view of birds who dare to chirp while the baby is sleeping.

yaimee Sun 12-May-13 18:19:52

grin awww I've gone all warm and fuzzy!

WestieMamma Sun 12-May-13 18:21:57

The cats don't think it's very nice. He's not allowed them to come into the living room since his baby arrived. They've taken to calling for their dinner from the cellar.

Steffanoid Sun 12-May-13 18:23:29

I think it's lovely he is helping, at least he's not bad with him or towards your dc grin

spiderlight Sun 12-May-13 18:24:33

Awwwwww grin Reminds me of our lurcher, who stayed up virtually around the clock with us for the first week or so, got up for every feed or change and wouldn't let DS out of his sight. All our very early photos have a really knackered-looking dog in the background.

SugarPasteGreyhound Sun 12-May-13 18:25:03

My parents' old German shepherd apparently did this with me when I was a baby. Mum said she was a cracking babysitter; she'd lay at the foot of the pram. If I cried she'd start barking so Mum knew. When I started toddling I'd pull myself up using her fur and she'd prop me up as I wobbled. She died when I was six, so I can remember her.

It's lovely that your dog has such protective instincts!

DameFanny Sun 12-May-13 18:25:22

grin totally had me!

Goldmandra Sun 12-May-13 18:26:24

I remember when DD1 was born and my parents' old dog used to come and sit on my feet when I was holding her. He used to let everyone who came near us know her was watching them. Sadly he had to be put down when she was three months old sad

Our JRT gets between DD2 (10) and any adult visitors who get too close or try to tickle or tease her in ant way. No teeth or growling. He just places himself between them and glares at the visitor smile

Aw that's so lovely smile

PetiteRaleuse Sun 12-May-13 18:34:18


My cat comes and bites me when she thinks I am not responding quickly enough to the baby crying. Did it the first time when I came home with DD1. I was having a lie down and she jumped on to the bed, jumped on to me right over my c section wound (ow) then bit me. Hard. It wasn't the best welcome home. She stopped when Dd1 was about one and then started again when I came home with DD2.

squeakytoy Sun 12-May-13 18:38:16

We had a basset hound when I was a kid, and he was my protector.. nobody could come near me if he didnt know them. My dad once went to slap me on the bum (playfighting) and the dog had his wrist in a tight grip.. no broken skin but my Dad never dared do it again! lol!

Dawndonna Sun 12-May-13 18:46:46

Ahh, I had a daxie/russell cross that did this with my first. Made me sniff!

grin great

crashdoll Sun 12-May-13 18:58:52

He's probably thinking that you are not as adept as him to be taking care of a hairless puppy, not being a dog yourself and all that. wink

WafflyVersatile Sun 12-May-13 19:03:01

You must tell him in no uncertain terms that this is your baby and he needs to leave you two alone sometimes so you can bond.

If that doesn't work maybe distract him with a biscuit or by throwing a ball right to the bottom of the garden.

SconeRhymesWithGone Sun 12-May-13 19:06:48

So sweet, OP.

When my younger brother was 3, he somehow slipped out of the house and went "walkabout." My parents realized that our Great Dane was also missing. The police found both of them about a half mile from our house in the middle of a field sitting contentedly in the grass enjoying the lovely day. As the police approached, the dog (who was the very definition of "gentle giant" with the family) got between them and my brother and turned into Cujo. They could not get anywhere near my brother until my dad got there.

SgtTJCalhoun Sun 12-May-13 19:10:40

Our minature schnauzer barks at anyone who goes near the dc. No biting or snapping, ever, just barking and standing between them. We have a babysitter who he barks at whenever she stands up, then follows her to assist with child care duties grin. He doesn't help me. Obviously trusts me.

Piemother Sun 12-May-13 19:10:45

I want a doooooooog!

That is all grin

DameFanny Sun 12-May-13 19:17:55

Thinking about it, have you tried bending down to his level and saying "my bubz, my rulez hun"?

If he goes for your throat he's established himself as an MNer, and can safely be left in charge.

tuttavia Sun 12-May-13 19:22:38

One of our cats used to be VERY protective of DS when he was a baby - she was forever purring and cuddling him when he was crying, and staring at me like I was a rubbish mum.

Now he's two, she can't wait to get out of his way.

StuntGirl Sun 12-May-13 19:34:55

dame fanny grin

ChoudeBruxelles Sun 12-May-13 19:38:56

Ah - I feel sorry for one of our springers that we don't have a baby to protect. Whenever a friend comes round with her just walking toddler he follows her round and sits on with her.

He's very protect of ds (7) too.

My mums staffie was like this. She would sit near the Moses basket while my son or my brother or sister was in it and if they cried she would bark gently or come get you.

Shes still the same now. If the kids try go near the front gate she barks or stands in front so they cant get out.

My sister used to curl up in the dogs bed with her and they would have an afternoon nap together. Try are very close now.

RubyGates Sun 12-May-13 19:44:45

Is it a rabbit?

Our rabbit is exactly the same. (but it was the electricity meter reader)

He still tries to lick DS2's hair clean if he stays still for long enough. I will never forget being disapproved for my lack of parentling skills by him. There is nothing on the planet that can disapprove quite so thoroughly as a rabbit.

thegreylady Sun 12-May-13 19:58:09

One day dh and I were walking our two dogs [a labrador and a Cairn] across a field near where we used to live.We were chatting to a neighbour who had a push chair with a baby and a toddler.The dogs were ambling along off the lead and the toddler was a little way behind us. Unseen by us at first a large black dog [maybe a Dobermann] jumped over a fence bordering the field and raced towards the toddler.It was barking and growling simultaneously and looked very very scary. Before we could react our two soft canines went for the other dog and chased it off.
It was the only time in their long lives [18 and 15] that either of them showed any aggression.I dont think the toddler was aware of the danger as he said,"Doggies run fast!" but his Mum was sobbing and do grateful that she sent her husband round later wit some dog treats.
My dh found the owner of the other dog and told him what happened.We moved away shortly after but if that Mum is on here she will remember smile

hiddenhome Sun 12-May-13 21:27:45

Our eldest cat used to catch mice for us to feed to ds2. After he was born, she'd bring them (live) up to the bedroom and we'd have to get up and catch them (middle of the night) and chuck them back outside.

She also used to go under his cot and only come downstairs once he was asleep.

Plomino Sun 12-May-13 21:50:06

Our two greyhounds are possibly the most slothful creatures on the planet , barely managing to roll off the sofa for their daily sprint, bimble and fart , before claiming exhaustion and having to come back to steal out of the bin for extra energy .

But if one of the two younger kids goes for a walk up to our top field , they suddenly feel the need to stretch their legs and follow them at a casual distance . Albeit that you can see them looking at each other , obviously having a conversation along the lines of 'well it's your turn , I went last time ! '

And neither of them really settle properly for the night until everyone's home .

BrianCoxandTheTempleofDOOM Sun 12-May-13 22:19:27

I think I love this thread!

When DD was born I lived with my parents. They had a 4 yo standard poodle.

He was a big, muscly dog, the best guard dog ever. In his eyes there was a pecking order:

My dad
My mum
My brother (who was in the army so barely home)
the cat
Pond scum

I was allowed to cuddle him, Jr.came to me when he was upset but otherwise, he could take or leave me.

So, bringing a tiny baby into the house was beyond worrying for me. He was a spoilt brat basically and o worried about him getting jealous.

Brought DD home,.lay her in the Moses basket in the living room and with dad inbetween dog and baby allowed him to have a peek and a sniff. curiousity satisfied he lay in front of the basket and pretty much stayed there the rest of the day. When visitors came we had to put him in another room. He claimed DD as his own and adored her.

Once DD was toddling their favourite game was for DD to chase Stan out into the kitchen, squeals of delight and then DD would toddle in with Stan "chasing" her. He would then nudge her (i like to think he was saying "tig you're it") and she would then turn and chase him!

My fave pic ever is of a bare bottomed DD stood on a foot stool looking out of the window with Stan stood on his hind legs, paws on the windowsill. he's gazing out and DD is looking up at him in deep conversation grin

He was pts 18 months ago, a very old but much loved man. Miss him to this day.

My current dog lies at my feet when I've got DS (6 weeks), lies the length of his changing mat when I'm doing his nappy and has to check DS is ok every time we come home. She's a sweetie smile

BrianCoxandTheTempleofDOOM Sun 12-May-13 22:19:53

blush sorry for the epic post!

livealoha Sun 12-May-13 22:24:59

My dog cries when my babies cry and sings when they sing! Sensitive little guy grin

Cherriesarelovely Sun 12-May-13 22:29:15

Hilarious! Well done OP!

moreyear Sun 12-May-13 22:39:31

My boy Westie was just the same and my girl Westie used to get up everynight for the night feeds with me and sleep under the craddle. They give so much love. Now the baby is a rambunctious toddler they are less keen grin. But they still opened their hearts to our new baby and have resumed giving me those concerned looks if if I don't pick her up fast enough if she is crying.

Kasterborous Sun 12-May-13 22:40:20

Our twelve year old Labrador wasn't best impressed when we first brought DD home, she went and hid as far away as possible the first time DD screamed. But she still keeps an eye on DD and is very gentle with her. DD loves the dog and often gently pats her. The dog loves it now that DD is one and gives her lots of her food! She loves going for a walk with the pram and is most put out if we go without her. She always wags her tail and sniffs DD when she comes downstairs in the mornings.

NatashaBee Sun 12-May-13 22:45:19

These stories are so lovely. <cries> I would love my DS to grow up with a dog.

SkaterGrrrrl Sun 12-May-13 23:05:01


SgtTJCalhoun Sun 12-May-13 23:18:37

Our boy is absolutely beside himself when dd comes out of school fussing her and wagging his tail but with ds who has ASD and doesn't really interact with him, he is always trying to elicit a play response. He jumps around and goes down on his front paws and barks. I have to teach ds how to interact with him because it doesn't come naturally and most times he ignores him but the dog never stops trying. He gets right up in ds's face as well and stares at him, wagging his tail like he's looking for something or trying to tell him something.

They broke the mould after that dog I tell you.

Skinnywhippet Sun 12-May-13 23:19:11

I need a scruffy lurcher and a baby!

Skinnywhippet Sun 12-May-13 23:20:38

Actually long haired fox terriers are my faves.

HoneyDragon Sun 12-May-13 23:20:38

Spiderlight. We have the exact same photos but with a knackered Labrador.

LOL Our old Beagle did that. She had her girly bits fixed so thought my firstborn could do with her expertise and she'd give me some real annoyed looks if I didn't jump to attention at the first squeak from the newborn.

CrabbyBigbottom Tue 14-May-13 00:03:08

Lovely thread!!

Ifyoulike Tue 14-May-13 00:12:00

Awww, how sweet! I was reading the post with a familiar sinking sensation in the pit of my stomach (thinking about another poor OP stuck in a horrible relationship), and then ended with a big smile!

Wish more posts ended that way. Cleverly done! smile

eosmum Tue 14-May-13 08:08:38

Very sweet even if I'm not a dog person. My granny used tell us the story of the chocolate lab they had when my mum was a baby, my mum was toddling towards the open fire and the dog put himself between my mum and the fire, granny came in to find mum hitting the dog to get out of the way and the poor dog burned completely down one side, blistered to bits, can't imagine what would have happened if he hadn't been there.

Booboostoo Tue 14-May-13 09:00:30

Some lovely stories and the bond between a child and a dog is a wonderful thing.

I don't want to seem like I don't have a sense of humour and I understand the OP is lighthearted but none the less can I just say that if the dog is actually stopping the cats from approaching the baby he is resource guarding which is a sign of stress and should be addressed with training (ditto with the dog being in any way uncomfortable with people approaching the baby). A dog crying when a baby cries is also a sign of stress that should be addressed.

reelingintheyears Tue 14-May-13 09:09:00

I agree with Booboostoo,it looks cute and i love the bond our DC have with our dog.

But the dog should always be at the bottom of the pecking order in a family and a dog guarding a new born would be a bit of a worry to me.

Dogs want to be at the top of the pile,i would be keeping a wary eye.

SgtTJCalhoun Tue 14-May-13 09:19:38

"dogs want to be top of the pile".

What is your reason for stating this please?

CrabbyBigbottom Tue 14-May-13 10:05:53

Dogs want to be at the top of the pile,i would be keeping a wary eye.

I'm sorry but this is nonsense, based on dated and discredited ways of thinking that see dogs as wanting to be 'alpha wolves'. Firstly, dogs are not wolves, and secondly, the observational data on wolf pack hierarchy was totally flawed because it was based on captive wolf 'packs' and not natural family groups. Please don't derail a nice heartwarming thread!

CrabbyBigbottom Tue 14-May-13 10:07:04

That should have been were, not was. blush <pedant>

CrabbyBigbottom Tue 14-May-13 10:09:30

However I do agree a bit about the resource guarding.

Still some lovely doggy tales here. I wish our pooch had an unbreakable bond with my DD - she's actually a bit nervous of her because DD tends to crowd her with over-enthusiasm.

melika Tue 14-May-13 10:13:34

Ah the lump in my throat! Stop it now.

I have a few pictures where my DS1 is lying asleep on the mat in front of the fire in the same position as my old Sadie, a cross Jack Russell mongrel, such a lovely, intelligent dog.

WorraLiberty Tue 14-May-13 10:17:44


If you don't like it, pay for proper childcare hmm


Hamwidge Tue 14-May-13 10:24:53

Our dog used to guard me when I was young, and he always knew when one of the family as hurt or upset, he would put his head on their knee and just stay there. He would also lick any cuts or grazes, and they always healed quickly!

He couldn't stand it when two of us started playfighting, he didn't know who to protect so he would chase his own tail and whimper.

WestieMamma Tue 14-May-13 10:28:10

I would, but the cats are unionised and I can't afford their fees.

EggsMichelle Tue 14-May-13 10:41:52

Considering re naming our boxer Nannie. He was a little unsure of DS when he was new born, and would grumble (boxers don't growl, they talk!) when DS was crying. But DS instantly attached to the dog (smiling, laughing and grabbing at him) and now the dog loves him.

Teabird Tue 14-May-13 11:44:43

We have a beautiful Doberman who looked after me all the time I was pregnant with DD. When I got really big he would lie with his head gently resting on my bump and if I left the room and was gone for longer than a few minutes he would come and check where I was. This included sitting in the bathroom while I had a shower. If Dh and I ever had an argument he position himself right next to me as if to say 'I'm on mummys side!!'
Now that DD is here, he dotes on her and has to check on her every morning and night as well as a million times during the day and lies outside her door at night, he obviously doesn't think the monitor or myself do a good enough job and has to be watching her even when asleep.
I love it, he is so devoted to her and she is only 6 months old!!

BrianCoxandTheTempleofDOOM Tue 14-May-13 11:48:57

I realised last night that my dog has to be near DS at all times - even when he has his nightly bath, she lies outside the bathroom. I take him into my room to get him dried and dressed, she's at the bottom of his cot (just lying there) and then I take him downstairs for his last feed and she lies at/on my feet.

She always had to be around for storytime with DD - we only stopped bedtime stories last year when I was pregnant and in bed asleep before DD grin The dog would come for (in DD's words) "group hugs" and lie on DD while the story was read, then come downstairs with me once DD had been tucked in.

Ah, she's lovely smile

TooExtraImmatureCheddar Tue 14-May-13 13:50:37


Dog and DD had a rocky start as dog was scared - he's a rescue dog and seemed to think he would be kicked out. He would howl or bark when she cried. After a few weeks, though, he would come and tell me if she was crying, and he started supervising nappy changes, sticking his nose in and whining - making sure I'm doing it right! He greatly disapproved of baths and used to stick his head over the side of the bath and try to lick DD dry. Now she is 14 months and adores him. He lies still as she climbs all over him, sticks her fingers in his eyes and mouth and gives him huge cuddles. He does knock her over when he gets excited, though. Has been known to run straight into adults (whippet/Staffie cross) and send them flying.

CrabbyBigbottom Tue 14-May-13 15:16:50

He lies still as she climbs all over him, sticks her fingers in his eyes and mouth and gives him huge cuddles.

Too that's so touching that he loves your DD so much, but please please don't let her do that. Any dog, however gentle and loving, really doesn't want to be treated like that. If she inadvertantly really hurt him or made him jump and he snapped at her, you would feel awful, he would probably be put down, and she could be seriously injured or worse.

Scared dogs who have been punished for growling (I'm not suggesting you have done this, but you said he's a rescue) or are just too scared to assert themselves will often suppress this natural warning. The next stage up the scale is to snap or actually bite. It's so so much better to learn about dog calming signals and remove the source of stress, than to regret afterwards that a dog has bitten, snapped or even growled at your child.

You (or anyone else - I'm really not having a go at you) can read more about calming signals here. I think every dog owner (and their dogs!) would benefit from knowing this stuff, but particularly owners of nervous or rescue dogs.

Some of the main calming signals (signs that dogs use on each other to say 'chill out' 'that's enough' 'give me some space' 'back off you're making me uncomfortable' etc) are
The look-away - direct eye contact is a challenge to a dog, unless you're talking/blinking etc. Watch dogs interacting and you'll see them using this all the time. You can have much hilarity by staring at your dog for a moment and then doing the look-away - do it a couple of times and they'll definitely react.
Yawning and licking their lips - big signal of mild stress, telling you that they're not entirely comfortable or are asking you to be kind and gentle.

If your child is climbing on your dog (this is really not just to you Too) and the dog is looking away with its ears slightly back, licking its lips and yawning frequently, this is an uncomfortable dog. Don't make it use a stronger message!

CrabbyBigbottom Tue 14-May-13 15:24:50

Sorry for thread derail, btw. blush I just think that dogs are so frequently misunderstood or put in situations they aren't comfortable with, not because they're not loved, but just because there's been so much misinformation over the years about what dogs are and what makes them tick.

wannaBe Tue 14-May-13 15:43:35

When ds was six weeks old we went to my parents for Christmas dinner. We took my dog with us (she was my first guide dog and a yellow Labrador), when we sat down to dinner ds was asleep in his carseat. The dog, who was usually inseparable from me, lay down next to the carseat and stayed with ds throughout the meal.

When he had his injections the dog became very upset when he cried.

I'm on my third guide dog now and ds is ten, and I am certain the dog loves ds more than he loves me.

TooExtraImmatureCheddar Tue 14-May-13 15:49:57

That leaflet is very interesting, Crabby. I shall read it properly when I get home and can observe my dog at the same time!

CrabbyBigbottom Tue 14-May-13 16:23:39

There are some great books out there as well Too - I really had some "Aha!" moments of enlightenment when reading about this stuff and it helped me recognise when my dog is getting stressed - especially with other dogs. It also makes it fascinating to watch how dogs interact with one another and with people, when you understand a bit of their language.

Your dog sounds lovely! smile

SgtTJCalhoun Tue 14-May-13 16:31:33

crabby I have just read that and going to look for further reading. I have had my dog for 11 years and would have thought myself pretty clued up but I am quite sad now to think of the stress I may have inadvertently caused him over the years. One really good thing though is that I can see that he really is trying to elicit a response from my ds and it makes me wonder how much of ds's difficulties due to ASD that he senses.

CrabbyBigbottom Tue 14-May-13 17:22:31

Sgt I don't want to make anyone sad! Dogs have evolved to adapt to us and our peculiar ways - I think they make ever such a lot of allowances for our bizarre and inexplicable ways of doing things. grin I'm sure you haven't caused him lots of stress, maybe sometimes he just thinks "geez I couldn't say it any clearer, why isn't she getting it!!" grin

I just think that sometimes we are so used to our pet dogs that we forget that they aren't humans in furry coats but animals with a totally different language and set of priorities (I know I do sometimes!). If an adult inadvertently pushes a dog too far and elicits a warning response, then that's usually not too serious (depending on the size/breed/bite inhibition of the dog). But if it's a child, then even a quick snap can catch a child wrong and cause disfigurement or worse, and certainly trauma and fear for everyone. I've been trying to drill into DD since she was tiny, how to treat dogs respectfully and not to invade their space or make them uncomfortable. She's ten and it's still an ongoing battle! hmm I love to see dogs and children, but I do sometimes cringe at how little the children are respecting the dogs' boundaries. They are animals, not toys.

Booboostoo Tue 14-May-13 17:46:40

What CrabbyBigbottom said!

Some of the behaviours described in this thread that people find endearing sound very much like signs of stress in the dog. Inadvertedly ignoring signs of stress may lead to the escallation of the stress and its release in other inappropriate behaviour (which may include bitting) so it's always worth learning how to read your dog.

A toddler hugging and kissing a dog, for example, is incredibly cute and from a human perspective it's a lovely display of affection. I don't doubt that some dogs will also welcome this kind of affection but many, well adjusted dogs, will be stressed by it and try to show it through 'dog language signs' that are not picked up by humans. People whose dogs have bitten often say 'it came out of nowhere' or 'he's never done this before' but the dog may have been trying to communicate his discomfort for a while without anyone hearing him.

Resource guarding has nothing to do with dominance theory or the pecking order (concepts I do not personally subscribe to when it comes to dog training). Dogs may guard food, food bowls, sleeping areas, doorways, and even people. They may guard because they feel a need for the object (a nice chew), because they have been taught the owner removes the object without rewarding its surrender (owner's shoes) or because they feel unsure or stressed. Resource guarding is often a sign of a generally unsettled dog but the good news is that it can be addressed with a variety of techniques (strengthening the 'leave it' command, NILIF, etc.). Resource guarding of people, especially children, should be dealt with with advice from a professional - it's not something to be alarmed about, but it is something that should be promptly and correctly addressed.

CrabbyBigbottom Tue 14-May-13 18:28:42

What CrabbyBigbottom said!

I don't think anybody's ever said that before! grin

Aw, that's lovely. Especially as CyborgCat still refuses to acknowledge the dds. grin

FourArms Tue 14-May-13 20:29:12

My mum's whippet would always jump up to say hello when we went round so her feet would be near my belly button. From the day I got a BFP she stopped, only starting again when DS1 was born by c/s - ouch! I yelped the first time she did it post c/s and she didn't do it again for months. Stopped again when I was pg with DS2. Amazing animals. She would also go & check on them while they slept - would go into both their rooms & then come back down. Was unhappy if their doors were wedged shut.

She was a rescue dog who didn't like them as toddlers (she just hid), but in older age loves them & will let them help her when she falls (unsteady on her feet on our laminate floors).

We'll miss her when she passes on sad

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