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Mums to be that are dog owners sharing wisdom and stories(59 Posts)
I thought I could start a thread for dog owners that are at various stages of pregnancy. Reason being I was slightly nervous about how my dog (4yo staffy) would behave around me during pregnancy. He's pretty energetic and is welcome on the sofa he's a very oversized lap dog to be honest. So far so good, I do sheild my tummy occasionally.
We bought the book telling your dog your pregnant which I recommend. But would love to hear other people's experiences and share ideas of how to make the new arrival fit in smoothly with our pups
The thread May or may not be successful... Time will tell
our dog used to sleep on my belly when I was pregnant with DS, even when he was kicking madly. She has known about later pregnancies very early on (couple of mcs), the last one I think she knew before me as she kept putting her head on my tummy.
Assume you've read about when you come back from hospital (assuming you're not having a hb) that you pay attention to the dog, and DH/DP carries baby. I was in for almost 2 days and DH brought home one of the babygrows DS wore in hospital for her to smell, and then she had a good supervised sniff of him when he came home.
The biggest challenge was walking her in the early days when everything was chaotic and day/night were one and the same!
We gave her treats and fuss when she was calm around DS too. She accepted him very quickly and they're now best friends (DS is 2.4)
I'm 33+6 we have a JRT cross dog whs about 3.5 years old, he's been so good with me through the pg, he's just as protective as always but plays with my DP more than me cause he knows we can't chase around, he still comes and lies with me and cuddles, just saves the boisterous bit for DP, am planning on sending a used baby grow home to go in the dogs bed, but I have every confidence hell be fine, he's a very good dog, my mums Irish setter is a big wuss with my sisters DC and runs away every time he makes any kind of noise!
Lyftiduft your dog sounds amazing, like one of those specially trained dogs that detect illness etc. resting on the bump is such a lovely image. Only happened once so far but to be fair I don't have much a bump.
I've read about bringing back the baby grows if poss, glad to hear it worked.
I never really thought of the changes to routine night feed and nightime awakenings that's something to think about. Dog's crated at night in the kitchen but I'm pretty sure hearing movement/cries will confuse him.
Thanks for starting this thread - we have a slightly
utterly mental Cocker spaniel and I'm 27 weeks tomorrow. He was a bit funny with me in week 6/7 ish (I think my smell changed) but hes fine now - if anything slightly more obedient when walking with me. He has been nippy in the past, mainly around food and we crate or muzzle him (purely precautionary) when new guests or more than a couple of guests are around. We did discuss re-homing when we first got the BFP but we are hoping he will be fine.
What was the book you mentioned?
My dog seemed fairly oblivious throughout my pregnancy and was pretty unmoved when my little girl was born. She's 11 months old now and the dog has recently decided he likes her - especially when she is being fed. He's very patient with her and gentle and always checks with us before going near her which is good. He's getting on and struggles with his back legs so we need to be careful she doesn't hurt him as she gets a bit more mobile.
It's called telling your dog you're pregnant. I got the kindle edition but the paper back comes with a cd with sounds like baby crying/laughing/bathing. It's very simple and quick to read.
Sorry: Tell Your Dog You're Pregnant: An essential guide for dog owners who are expecting a baby (Paperback)
Dr Lewis Kirkham 1
Also remembering it has a kind of test to see how your dog reacts to the baby sounds and methods it advises - it then categorises them and gives you further advice/steps to take
This thread is great - I have a 4yo staffy too and am TTC #1. I had a couple of mcs in the past and he seems to have been aware of the change in me whilst I was pg, but not quite enough to tone down the bouncing. he too likes sofa snuggles and that was where he seemed gentler, when his head was nearest my belly. I'll be looking into this mire when we manage a bfp.
Hi - I started a thread on this about a month ago. Here is the link in case it helps! www.mumsnet.com/Talk/pregnancy/a1713496-Calling-all-pregnant-new-mum-dog-owners
I'm 16+2 and have a rescue border collie. He has major anxiety issues but has improved a lot over the last 3 years. He has sensed that I smell differently and I swear he's playing up more than usual - not listening, being very mischievous, and has started barking for attention which he rarely did before.
We're having to buy a pram early to get him used to it as he hates wheels of any kind! He sounds like a nightmare but he is very loving and playful and is very loyal to me, my DH and other family members who he's spent a lot of time with.
We're very realistic about introducing him to the baby when the time comes, but even if he was the calmest most docile dog in the world, we still wouldn't leave him alone with the baby. We keep a rabbit in the kitchen and while he's interested in her, it's only fleeting e.g. we often let her out while he's in the same room. He doesn't care, unless she makes a loud noise or crashes into something, then he will run over to her, give her a sniff then walk off again. We're hoping his approach to the baby will be similar...
Steffanoid we're thinking of doing the same with a blanket - hoping my DH can take one home to put in the dog's basket so he can get used to the smell.
We have a cocker spaniel. I was 6 weeks pregnant when we got him. When DS was born my DH brought a blanket home from the hospital so the dog could get DSs scent.
We have always been strict with the dog, he isn't allowed on the sofa or upstairs, if DS ( 8 months) grabs him or strokes him, and the dog is calm he gets fuss and told he is a good boy etc. Our dog is as soft as grease but I would never leave DS alone with him, after all he is still a dog. Also the dog walks next to the pram with me so he is used to DS being everywhere with him!
We have a staffy too. I can't remember doing anything special. The main thing was we didn't change her routine or our behaviour towards her after the children came along.
I have a photo of her and my DS taken a few years ago. She knows her place!
That should say *A photo of her on my profile
Thanks for the link serious I remember reading that and thinking more about choosing a suitable buggy (have decided on the baby jogger gt) the one handle idea really helped and I've also bought a baby bjorn as we walk over muddy grass quite often.
amazing that pics lovely, I have a good feeling our staff will be similar as long as we are careful and don't leave baby and dog alone. They are nicknamed the nanny dogs after all!
I have two border collies and they are 100% disinterested in dd, and have been since the day she arrived. They will move away with slightly pained expressions when she cries, but other than that just ignore her. I have to admit I was a bit worried beforehand as one is pretty full on hyper, but nada, it's all fine.
To Seriousstuff- we had a rescue border collie growing up and when my sister was born (much much younger than me), he used to 'herd' her.
He was very gentle but used to do the collie circling and crouching around her until she was about 10 IIRC. Seemed to be his way of protecting her as he wasn't trying to move her on IYSWIM but thought you might want to be aware of this!
He tried to do this near sheep/horses if we saw any too when out on the lead but never would have expected him to do it to a child!!
Thanks for the book info - the Paperback is expensive in comparison to kindle ed but probably worth it for the CD - ordered it
I have 2 Labradors, you would never have guessed
We got our youngest lab as a puppy when DS was about 16 months old (DS is 7 now) and DD was 3 (she's now 9). She's amazing with the children, incredibly protective of them.
We got our older lab as a rescue dog about 4 & half years ago when she was about 5. She'd been given to the home as she was pregnant and had obviously had many litters already. Her 9 pups found homes straight away and we just fell in love with her. She had really bad mastitis at first and a very saggy tum. The tum still sags but is so much better these days.
Anyway (I could go on about my lovely dogs all day), I don't think either of them have been different with me, I'm 9 weeks pregnant.
I like the idea of a cd with baby noises, that might be a good idea. I think we plan to take it very slowly when baby comes.
My younger lab had a crate for the first 18 months which was her hideaway from the kids when she needed it. We've since had an extension and the utility room is now the dogs' room, so they will have their escape in there.
Our dogs don't go upstairs either but we are having to re-jig the house and planning on moving our bedroom to a downstairs room, which baby will share with us for 6 months+
I do love my dogs and I think you can easily have dogs and a baby with forward planning and being responsible. I still keep the children out of the kitchen when the dogs are eating. They haven't snapped but I don't dare take chances, they're still dogs at the end of the day, as much as I snuggle them and call them my babies
I think it will be harder to exercise them when baby comes but I think with planning it will all come together. I don't think I'd feel comfortable walking them with a pram (they're quite big dogs) but I hope it will be my 'me' time, walking them, as it is now.
Sorry for such a long post, I didn't plan on going on so much.
Thanks for the heads-up Smerlin! Nothing would surprise me with him anymore...
We have a little white fluff - a maltese/westie mix. Terribly clever - too much for her own good (hides things she isn't allowed under the coffee table and waits for us to disappear before having them - like plastic bags etc!). She also knows when we are ill and sits of which ever body part is sore or sits next to it. So I had terrible headaches at the start of this pg, and she would come and lie above my head on my pillow, occasionally nudging me with nose to check all ok, or when i had stomach cramps (partic during periods) she would come and lie and my tummy. She sits on my feet when they get really cold (for some reason during the pg so far I get weirdly cold feet!). She is quite boisterous still (only 3) but now only with DH and gentle with me, since being pg - I think they can smell it? I wondered if she could hear her as well in my tummy?
I have seen her 'guard' my niece from any animals on the TV (she barks at any animals on the TV - including cartoon ones!), and when playing with children she just nudges her toy back to them to be thrown, and wont do any tug of war stuff, like she does with Dh and me etc.
Honestly . I feel really privileged to have her in our lives, and feel full of love for her and her funny little ways. I am a bit of a sap (and i used to be really frightened of dogs before I got her...!).
We will also do the babygro stuff etc. We have already left the car seat there, and the crib, and the baby clothes, and been teaching her not to run off with the baby socks etc. I leave lots of stuff now on purpose well within her reach and reward her leaving them alone - as once the baby comes we can't be worrying about leaving babes toys and clothes on the floor or within reach and then her running off with them. She is doing really well with all this.
I breed chihuahuas and my pups before they left liked to come and lay on my bump and were more than happy sleeping with baby kicking them. I sometimes have to re-jig a dog when it stands on my belly but I think to be honest baby is surrounded by that much fluid that a small jab from a chi isn't going to do anything.
I'm 13+2 and I've got 2 JRTs.
The boy is 8 and very laid back whereas the girl is 2 and a bit mad at times! My boy walks brilliantly on the lead and the girl pulls like a husky so trying to get her walking better before baby comes.
My biggest problem is the sleeping arrangements. The boy sleeps in his own bed in the corner of our room whereas the girl used to sleep in her crate but also in our room. She's figured out that whining gets her out and now we have a dog in our bed permanently. Our own fault totally but think we need some help to get her back out again!
I have a 1.5 year old pug. When it's just us at home she is calm as cuddly- literally it's just me and her on a three seater sofa and she just has to be so close to me! As soon as she hears my DH open the door in the morning she runs straight past him to Jump in my bed. I don't mind as baby won't be sleeping in my bed (I'm 19 weeks) however she has a couple of traits that worry me. She is so hyper when anyone else comes in the house, jumping and kicking for attention, she also barks and growls at the tv when anything looks or sounds like another animal, worried this will wake baby up all the time. !!
I have 2 cavies, and when we found out I was pregnant we did stop letting them on the sofa, just so we could put Moses basket on there without them pulling it off as they jumped up. I have a photo of ds1 on the day he was bought home lying in between the two dogs. Never had a single thought of them doing anything to him. We did use a crying baby annabell doll a few times so they got used to the noise. Unfortunately I have had a real issue with both the dogs while pregnant both times, I find that I really hate them being near me, just as well dh makes up for it. I suppose if you can go off food, why can't you go off a pet. No more kids now though as dh had the snip so guess they won't have it happen again.
sjclarke I was wondering about how noisy barking could effect the baby. I wondered whether they would hear the noise in the womb and therefore be used to it. Probably completely wrong
slippy i'd say you are completely right!
i've heard people say that the sound of the hoover makes their LO go to sleep!
Slippy I've read this somewhere - the same way the baby will recognise your voice, I wouldn't be surprised if they recognise the dog's! Mine makes enough racket anyway so would be surprised if he/she didn't!
Also pmjkt interesting you have gone off the dog, I'm sure it's just a phase. My better sense of smell has made me push the dog away more - I can really smell his breath... Not good. Lucky his short haired I don't think I could face wet dog smell.
Fairy - babies are soothed by any type of white noise, so vacuum, tumble dryer, washing machine, extractor fan, hair dryer etc. I sometimes even tune the radio to between channels to get mine to sleep! The dogs barking does wake her, but it is better to get them used to sleeping surrounded by every day noise so I don't shield her from it. She's used to it now, and usually ignores it and settles again.
Great tip - will def remember that!
My OH is on nights for a wee while so getting used to handling the dogs totally on my own is good practice!
the white noise is a god send - from my friends who have just had. You can download white noise apps too for your phone, such as a hairdryer noise, and this sends them off to sleep. My BIL tells the story of in desperation using the electric tooth brush in the bathroom one night with my niece, he did the in-between feeds bit, working brilliantly until he heard it winding down and then off - cue my nieces eyes popping wide open and bawling her head off.
tea- that's so funny .
We have an 8 month old daxie x and I'm 19 weeks pregnant with our first at the moment. I freaked out about it all at first, but he's recently started to calm down and become less clingy which has reassured me we'll be OK. He's very much the 'baby' of the family and gets lots of cuddles etc but he also isn't allowed to jump up anywhere (sofa, bed, at people) without sitting down politely and waiting to be invited. He also sleeps in his crate in the hallway, otherwise I'd be really worried about him being in the bedroom.
Does anyone know if there are any organisations or clubs for people with babies and dogs to walk together? I think the dog will walk fine with a buggy, but would be nice to meet some other people near me in the same boat and none of my mum friends have dogs!
Good to read all your experiences, it makes me feel much more relaxed about it all - it'll all be fine, won't it? Won't it?????
pizdets just be aware that some dogs have a wee change again about 12-14 months ish. my dog started chewing again and got a bit trickier to handle. not saying yours will but just be prepared! apparently lots of dogs are put up for rehoming between 12-18 months because their owners cant understand why they've had a setback. but it'll go away!
i'm not worrying about having dogs with a baby - baby gates and a close eye plus some training will be grand
I had 3 dogs when mine were babies.
Biggest tip - don't do anything different.
Thats it, simple - it works.
I got a rescue border collie when I was 5 months pregnant. A good excuse to get out of the house as I wasn't working!
She used to press her paws against my stomach which was pretty funny. She came from a family so we knew she was used to crying babies - but we also got given a CD with babies crying and various other noises to play for her.
When I went in to deliver, a friend picked her up and she stayed at my friend's house until about day 3.
def worth thinking ahead about 'dogcare' if you need to go into hospital.
DPs father looks after our two so he'll be employed when the time comes!
This just brought back a lovely memory of my lab with my DD when she was about 6 months old. They were playing tug of war with a blanket, and the dog had hold of it really gently her front teeth, and was sort of matching my DD's gentle little tugs. When she plays tug of war with me, she can drag me across the room
Just make little of the first encounter, play it down and try to relax, and don't do anything too different. Maybe do it when they have a lead on so that you feel in control.
The worst thing my dog did was constantly lick the baby's head, she would trot past her and give her baldy head a random slurp of affection.
I never had to clean up after I fed the baby in the high chair, the bits never even hit the ground She would sit there waiting like a fielder.
Make any changes you want to how you set up your house long before your baby arrives, we decided to restrict our dog to the ground floor and to keep her out of the lounge. Our dog just loves to roll in stinky stuff and I know she runs through all sorts of muck and just didn't want that on the floor where my new baby would be. So we changed those 'rules' months before the baby came.
Sensible tips about never leaving a baby and a dog together, however calm and gentle the dog usually it.
But in the main, there is rarely a problem, our dog is lovely with DD, if a bit boisterous and clumsy - but you learn to anticipate and deal with specific issues - like our dog (like most) is insanely excited before a walk and so I get DD to get her shoes/coat on and then wait in the garden, standing to the side of where the dog charges out otherwise she would be knocked flat.
Like recall says, most dogs I've come across do moderate their behaviour around children. I know my dog had had pups too (before I got her) and I don't know if that makes a difference - I suspect she was a good mother to her pups.
Thanks fairydogmother, I have read about that! I'm not looking forward to it but better to be forewarned. To be honest, as long as he's not as clingy as he was when he was a puppy then I can deal with other naughty behaviour. He used to cry if I went upstairs and shut the stairgate...now I'm working in my office and can see him happily pootling around the garden in the sunshine without a second thought!
Beamur, thanks also for the tips, we're doing the same, moved the dog from the bedroom to the hall a few weeks ago as we knew we'd want our space in the night, I feel much more relaxed knowing we've already got that job done too!
Here's what we did which really helped our dog get used to the new additions:
1. Make all changes right now - so that your dog doesn't associate change with the new arrival as much - he will be down the pecking order no matter how much you love him
2. put a stair gate on babies room or at top of stairs now so dog get used to it. You don't want unsupervised doggy visits to baby. Though we let our pup upstairs as long as we're there too.
3. reinforce manners - keep off furniture, not pulling on lead, coming when called etc which will make everything calmer in general and easy to walk baby & dog together. Also reinforces the 'we people are the pack leaders youre the dog' thing.
4. Always feed dog after humans/baby so he knows he's below baby in the pack and will respect that.
5. Before you bring baby home get someone to bring back a blanket or clothes that the baby has worn and put in in dogs basket so he can get used to smell.
6. If the dog has baby/ikds toys or dolls to chew on get rid of those now and get proper dog ones, so he won't be eating your kids stuff!
7. When baby's first home we let our dog have a good sniff and lick the babies feet ( a good sign apparently if your dog wants to!) Obviously don't let your dog lick kids faces but anywhere else is fine I reckon, helps with their immunity!
And don't worry about being strict, your dog won't mind at all if it's done gradually and it will help with any jealousy and it's for his own good, cos one jealous snap at baby means he'd have to be re-homed.
Our dog LOVES the kids and is very sweet for the most part but has learnt to take himself off when they really bug him. We have a doggie flap so he can go get his own space which is great.
This is TMI and not helpful, but the thing I remember most about bringing DS home was that the dog was utterly, utterly fascinated by all my different smells - especially lochia . Barely glanced at the baby then buried his face in my crotch again. Not the magical moment I'd envisaged.
Message withdrawn at poster's request.
Message withdrawn at poster's request.
During pregnancy, my working cocker became fascinated by my worn knickers, pj bottoms, leggings etc, and would rip them up given half a chance. Never did this before or since - must have loved something about my pregnancy hormones! Post birth she has been v loving to dd. I remember my mum visiting when dd was 2 days old, and commenting on how d dog sat close while I was bf. She still does now dd is one! Also so patient, allows dd to do all sorts to her (supervised, of course). Good luck, op and other pregnant posters - do thoroughly believe baby and dog can have a wonderful (supervised) relationship!
We have a barker. My boys never get woken by the barking, the are so used to it. The youngest is 9mo old.
The dog was interested when my oldest came home from the hospital and heard the crying, think the dog thought the baby was a squirrel.
We stopped the getting on the sofa too and the dog quickly adapted.
I never leave them alone together as I don't want to put the dog in a situation. The dog is really good with the boys but why rock the boat and chance something?
My dog didn't seem to have a clue that I was pregnant. I bought the crying baby cd and she didn't care. i think it annoyed me mroe than her . I didn't worry about her sitting on me, pulling me. I think babies are pretty tough inside our tums.
However I would say she saved my sanity both in the long wait for DD to arrive (2 weeks late) when we did big walkies every day, and also she forced me to get out of the house for a walk each day once DD was here. I probably wouldn't have bothered without the dog but I always felt so much better for the exercise/fresh air
Also noisy barking is the one noise that DD has always been immune to. If the dog barks in the night it wakes me up but not DD
Message withdrawn at poster's request.
How will I know if our Dog has to go?
We love him like crazy, and we got him as a puppy (8 weeks old) however our DS doesn't like him still (after having him for nearly 9 months) and now we're pregnant again.
at what point do you give up? I really love him, and I think we would love to have him, but I feel that he would enjoy a whole family who appreciated him, not just 2/3 people.
Why do you want to give him up? Just because your son isn't keen?
So if your son isn't keen on the new baby will you give that up too?!
Sorry but I feel massively strongly about dogs being 'given up'. If you do go down this route please rehome him straight to someone who will keep him for the rest of his natural life. I have 2 rescues and know first hand the utter disaster zone of dogs who've had multiple homes and been in kennels. My 9 month JRT had been in 5 homes when she came to us. It's taken us 2 years to get her mentally ok.
I'm not trying to be harsh but it upsets me greatly
I also have two rescue dogs and implore you to do everything you can to hold on to your boy Queen. It is traumatising for dogs to leave the home they like and Luna, our lab cross, still frets whenever we leave her, even four years after being with us.
Dogs are hard work, just like kids. In fact, we are due our first in a few weeks and feel like the dogs have been a great preparation (only difference seems we have friends and family already lined up to babysit the human!) I know we don't have our baby yet but our dogs are staying despite the fact that they are both pains!
Could you perhaps try doing some fun things with dog and son - maybe some simple training with treats, some games of catch, even just five minutes of supervised stroking/tummy rubbing time? Might help with the bonding process. I think your son will follow your lead so if you make some dog time exciting and fun it should rub off. Good luck
I don't want to give up on the dog, in fact husband and I are soo very sad that our DS hasn't taken to Milo despite wanting a dog most of his life. Our son has a particular disability--his frame of mind may not change in regards to the dog.
Milo means the world to us, he truly truly does. I'm just worried about our sons treatment of Milo as our son grows up. Our son was much bigger than Milo when we brought Milo home. (Labrador) Milo has since grown and is much larger than our DS (who is 4). We tested out having a labrador for a few weeks over the summer before we decided to get Milo--and our Son was over the moon with that dog.
I honestly feel that once Milo has been neutered and grown a bit (calmed down) their relationship will be better; however if I cannot control Ds's behaviour+attitude towards Milo I will then become worried for Milo's safety and happiness.
Milo is the funnest, sweetest, kindest animal we have ever met--and he has restored our faith in ourselves (when our DS was dx'd with a disability my dh and I naturally felt responsible for our bad parenting skills).
It's difficult enough to get our son to be mindful of his toys---just soo worried how he'll treat Milo as he gets older.
Maybe a bit of expert help from someone who knows about assistance dogs or works with children with specific needs? My dog is a PAT dog but I don't know much more about anything specific I'm afraid.
As regards neutering he can be done at about a year old but talk to your vet if you think you'd like it done sooner. Some dogs are mature enough earlier than that.
I've seen so many examples where, with the right help, children with specific needs blossom with a dog in their lives. Would be worth getting help now tho
Yeah, I have been trying to get the right training. However in our area--it's close to £1k for special needs training.
Aw Queen that sounds really hard. I wonder if there are any charities which could help. I'm not sure where you would start though. I certainly think getting the dog neutered would be a good start - it will almost certainly calm him down a bit although labs can be quite giddy when young. Is there anything your son really enjoys doing which you could try to somehow involve the dog in? Other than that if the dog seems happy and is getting love from you and your OH, maybe over time your son will accept him. Everything crossed for you.
I have a Gordon setter, black lab cross. He's lovely I also have a 5 and a bit month old baby, he's also lovely. My dog is a barker when playing, when someone comes to the door and when we get his lead out. It's never bothered the baby I think he was used to the sound.
My husband took a babygro home from the hospital and came home at night to look after the dog. When I got home the dog was very happy to see me and I took him on a very quick walk approx 5 minutes. After that once I'd had a few day r&r at home, (straightforward birth only 7 stitches) I'd wear the baby in a sling(caboo) when walking the dog. I have a baby that wanted to be held a lot and a strong dog. I don't need to use the sling anymore but it was essential at the start.
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