Cats and new babies.

(22 Posts)
Writerwannabe83 Mon 10-Feb-14 10:57:06

Hello everyone, I'm due in 6 weeks and I'm concerned about the safety issues with the baby and my two cats.

We have got all the baby bits around the house and I've lost count of the number of times my cats have either tried to jump in the cot, the crib, the moses basket, the pushchair and the travel cot.

Apparently there are nets available to buy to stop this from happening and they clip on to the cots/crib/basket etc - but are they safe to use whilst the baby is actually using its cot/crib/basket?

I imagine that a little net wouldn't do much to stop the weight of a cat jumping on it???

TwittyMcTwitterson Mon 10-Feb-14 11:03:01

I have a dog, a rottweiler of all things, and was terrified about the possibilities of what could happen.

All I can suggest is being vigilant. Cats are not trainable in the same way dogs are so you have your work cut out. It goes without saying to never leave them alone. I've not heard of nets and probably they'll just be a pain in the arse. Don't let them near DC when newborn and watch them. What more can you do!

Eletheomel Mon 10-Feb-14 11:05:12

I've got 2 cats and my son is now 8 months old. To be honest, while cats tend to like comfy places to sleep (and cots/prams etc are comfy) they tend not to be that keen on noisy/smelly babies :-)

My cats would occassionally try and jump up on the moses basket while my son was in it, but you see them, you shout at them before they do it, they leg it. I woudl never leave my baby in the same room as any pet (cat or dog) so there was never any risk of the cats getting up to mischief.

One of our cats have avoided my son since he was born, the other has sat next to him and let him pet grab handfulls of her fur her before making an escape - he loves the cats and is always watching them.

We got a cat net for the moses basket but never used it. If a cat jumped on it, it woudl give way, but I think it's mean to work like a cattle grid - e.g. the cat doesn't fancy the look of it as it's not safe so doesn't jump on it.

I think they would be safe to use while the baby is in them, but to be honest, better just to keep the cats out the room if your baby is sleeping.

There's a lot of fear about cats and babies, but in my experience its all unfounded.

I always thought the nets looked pretty pointless too. I think they are supposed to be safe to use with the baby in though.

I didn't worry about cat hair but did make sure I was in the room with the baby at all times so I could supervise where the cat was. In truth he never ever tried to jump in with him. We kept the bedroom door closed at night.

Fetacat Mon 10-Feb-14 11:21:54

I had the same concerns before Ds arrived as my two cats were often found asleep in the Moses basket/pram/playmat. When the baby arrived they disliked it instantly. I think it's the crying. It's been 3 months now and they still leave the room whenever he is there!

ClairesTravellingCircus Mon 10-Feb-14 11:21:54

I had a cat and newborn twins and tbh the cat would run a mile in the opposite direction! grin
She liked the pram/car seats to nap in, but only when they were empty. She never ever tried to snuggle in with them even though she likes sleeping with my older dds.
Two years on she still isn't too keen on the twins and I can't blame her!
We still took same precautions as advised by other postersbut it turned out to be a non-problem really.
Good luck with the rest of your pregnancy.

cadidog Mon 10-Feb-14 11:25:53

My baby is just over 2 weeks old and I have 2 cats. Never bothered with cat nets either. So far the cats have been very interested in the Moses basket, though generally when the baby isn't in it. They get told off when they try and climb in it. So far they've sniffed the baby a lot (he smells of milk so that's not surprising) but they don't get too close to him.

I have left him alone with one of the cats who 'd installed herself by the window while he was asleep - I kept checking on them both but longer term we're all going to need to learn to live together.

Writerwannabe83 Mon 10-Feb-14 11:33:20

Thanks everyone - I feel so much more reassured!!! As has been said, I'd never leave the cats alone with the baby but I would worry if I were to accidentally fall asleep on the sofa whilst the baby is asleep in his Moses Basket (in the same room) and the cats wander in. I suppose I could always shut the cats out of whatever room we are in but I'd hate for my cats to feel excluded...I know that sounds ridiculous grin I am worried about how they're going to adapt.....I imagine they will probably run a mile once the crying starts too!!!!

I suppose until baby arrives there is no way of knowing how things will be and no point in me getting overly stressed about it. I guess I will just take basic safety precautions and see how things go.

matana Mon 10-Feb-14 11:36:33

Don't worry op it's really not an issue for the following reasons:
1. They'll be a bit freaked out to find an unusual moving, crying little thing in the spaces that used to be empty and keep their distance. Or;
2. They'll be intrigued but keep their distance anyway. Or;
3. They won't get a chance to be in a room alone with the baby because when your baby is that tiny you'll want to practically wear/ be close at all times so you can gaze at him or her.

Ime it's when your baby becomes a toddler that you need to keep a closer eye on the situation. Our cats were brilliant when ds was a baby - even got a bit protective of him. When he started to walk you couldn't see them for dust! They're great friends now he's older and gentler.

As you don't know how they'll react just be a bit vigilant and check regularly if you're out of the room. Our cats gently put their paws on the edge of the moses basket, had a little nosey, then gently got back down and found somewhere else to sleep. It's almost as if they know.

FurryGiraffe Mon 10-Feb-14 11:38:35

I have a 9 month old and two cats. While the cats are very keen on sleeping on all baby paraphernalia without a baby in it, I've never had a problem when the baby is there- too noisy, too wriggly, too tail-grabby! The cats like a quiet life. DS is now absolute obsessed with cats and thinks they are fabulous- he has a special cat noise that he makes whenever he sees one grin

specialsubject Mon 10-Feb-14 11:44:04

priorities! exclude the cats while the baby is small, although they will probably exclude themselves... They will not really suffer that much. Your cats see you as staff and food source and are quite hard to offend. (I like cats BTW!)

Once the baby is over a certain size it will be the cats that are in danger.

cats do not attack children unless provoked, and even then it will be a scratch or maybe a nip. Dogs can kill.

DipDabDabDip Mon 10-Feb-14 11:45:35

My two haven't gone near dd in the 10 months she's been here! She however has started to be intrigued by them. How can you explain to a 10 month old to stroke gentley?! grin.

MrsDeVere Mon 10-Feb-14 11:47:11

I think its one of those old myths that cats are attracted to babies because they smell of milk and are warm.

I had my first DCs over 20 years ago and it was certainly something that my granny said to me.

Like others have said the cats tend to love the equipment before the baby is in it but not so keen once the noisy, wiggly thing arrives.

I have never had a newborn without having a cat.

I can't claim that there have never been any cat accidents ever but I have not heard of any.

poopooheadwillyfatface Mon 10-Feb-14 11:53:20

My cat was utterly disinterested in the children when they were babies. Still isgrin

Mogz Mon 10-Feb-14 11:54:52

Hi OP my baby is now 9 weeks old and both my cats have been a mixture of mischief and angels with her and her stuff. We put the cat net over the basket for weeks before baby arrived so the cats stopped considering it as a place to sit, the bouncer gets stored up side down so they don't climb on it and they won't go near her play mat when she's on it as she's so busy wriggling and making noise and they're just not interested. They do like sniffing at any bottles that get put down, but they all get sterilised anyway and her toss may get batted about if I forget to put them away. To encourage them to stay out of the way we bought new beds and blankets and toys for the cats but our boy cat would rather curl up on our lap whilst we're on the sofa holding the baby, he likes the warmth, we were a bit scared of that at first but as we're right there and he's mostly just falling asleep it's actually quite nice for us all to be snuggled up.
Best of luck settling in to life with your new baby, it's wonderful.

MabelBee Mon 10-Feb-14 11:55:47

The nets were useless. My tip is to lay sheets of tin foil in all the baby stuff now. The cats hate it so jump straight out and it trains them out of wanting to sit there. Worked for us.

GingerDoodle Mon 10-Feb-14 13:01:58

I have 6 cats. The youngest is 3 eldest 19. DD is now 17 months.

My mother-in-law always made a point of telling me we had to be careful but tbh the cats ignored her as a newborn and now are ridiculously tolerant of her (I have caught her petting grumpy 19 year old grandma car who dislikes humans very much and holding one of the others while he al la road runner tried to escape!) She has got scratched once.

We put balloons in her crib and cot before she was born as cats are not meant to like them. We also shut them out of our bedroom for a while when she was in with us and have always shut the nursery door.

That said the cats have occasionally kipped in her buggy (I used to leave it up in the hallway so learnt to sit a bag/ cushion on it to discourage it) and one or twice got shut in the nursery in the middle of the night (our fault) so kipped in the cot (thankfully she was in her carry cot sat in the cot at the time - also exited the room like his backside was on fire so must have known I would be displeased).

MiaowTheCat Mon 10-Feb-14 13:51:46

The average cat will have fuck all interest in a wriggly, unpredictable, often noisy and non-food or cuddle dispensing small baby. The most you're likely to get is a sniff, indignant look and a flounce away to glower at you in the corner for daring to upset the status quo.

Contrary to what some more hysterical people will claim - the average moggie is not, in fact, sat there at night reading Baby Death for Dummy Felines.

MotherOfInsomniacToddlers Mon 10-Feb-14 14:51:35

I have two cats and two toddlers. Now I don't worry but when they were babies I always closed the kids bedroom doors in the day so that the cats couldn't sleep in their cots, with car seats I always put a cushion inside it so they couldn't sit in it and make it all fluffy. I have a gate on my kitchen door so that the kids can't get near the cat food/litter. My cats seem to have a sense that kids are kids. If I went up to my cat and pulled her tail then she would probably scratch me but if the kids do anything the react totally differently, when my 1 year old got hold of one of the cats tails she patiently waited for me to go and free her. If the kids are too excitable the cats just leave the room tbh

MotherOfInsomniacToddlers Mon 10-Feb-14 14:52:30

Oh and when the kids are in bed the cats are restricted to downstairs

deakymom Thu 13-Feb-14 00:14:07

cats hate nets so use them now and by the time you have your baby they wont bother with the items if its extreme you could get one of those static shock mats that give them a static shock when they jump on it i threatened to get one with one of my cats who insisted the kitchen counter was for her they were out of stock so i just flicked water on her instead! in my personal experience cats don't bother with babies i had one cat which acted as a nanny and would wake me if she cried and another cat who wouldn't leave her side if she was ill even to the point of getting puked on he would always be outside the bedroom door or sleeping on the floor next to her but would run away the second she woke up (i miss my cats)

RalphRecklessCardew Thu 13-Feb-14 07:53:46

There must have been literally tens of millions of households just in the UK that have had cats and babies in them over the past, say, 30 years. If any of those cats had seriously hurt any of those babies can you imagine the amount of press coverage? The tabs would go insane for it and the broadsheets wouldn't be far behind. If it ever happened, we'd know about it.

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