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Introducing my 18 month old dog to my newborn(9 Posts)
I have a pug cross that is currently 18 months old. I'm due in October with my first baby.
Dog is very affectionate, can be quite hyper and yappy, generally loves fuss and attention and food, but he is not a naughty dog in that he loves praise and treats, so is usually well behaved but can be demanding.
She is used to being around little children, but never encountered a baby before.
Throughout pregnancy, she's been affectionate and cuddly of me, particularly my bump of which she cuddles up to every night - resting her chin or paw on it.
Any advice welcome Not worried about the dog begin jealous (although she has totally been our "baby" since we got her!), but worried she'll be a bit excitable/much - she's very licky and inquisitive.
I honestly would not introduce them, as such.
Instead I would be aiming for the dog to ignore the baby. You want her to think a baby is the dullest thing in the world, not worth bothering with.
So I would:
a) think carefully about how the dog's routine is going to change when the baby arrives and start those changes now. Inevitably there will be times she cannot cuddle up to you because you are BF or whatever. Start that now - if you will want her to be in her bed then start getting her used to that before the baby. If she is going to be walked less then reduce walks now. If she currently has her toys all around the house and a baby is going to change that then tidy them away now. If there are going to be more toys because of the baby then start to introduce them now. If yapping is going to be a problem because it'll disturb the baby then start to untrain that now.
b) once the baby is here then not try to force any interaction or introduction at all. Keep them both safe, supervised and more-or-less apart. There will be plenty of time later on when your baby is a child for them to start to build a relationship. I personally would not be aiming for that to happen now.
c) think of ways your dog can still get what she needs after the baby arrives. She might get walked less but if the reality is that she won't be walked enough then now is the time to think of who could walk her for you and get started on that. Might also be worth tapping up friends or family or researching a good day care that you can use at a pinch, in case you start to need a day off managing both pup and baby.
Yep you don’t want to introduce them at all. Think about the routine and behaviour you want when baby arrives and teach it now. I use a “settle” instruction for my girl for instance. And don’t allow the “demanding”. You need to be able to feed the baby in peace etc. Will you shut the dog out of certain rooms or off furniture? If so then do it now.
You know your dog best. PP say don’t introduce, but my dog would have been very confused so I think it depends on their nature really. A practical thing you can do that a friend suggested beforehand was that if your partner comes home hospital once before you then take one of the baby’s blankets so the dog can smell him before you arrive home - we all just came home together straight away so didn’t end up doing this in the end but I think it’s a nice idea. When we got home we just put DS down on the floor in the car seat and let our dog have a little look and a sniff, then carried on as normal.
As a pp said, give the dog a blanket of LOs to smell. Then have baby in your arms or in a basket and allow dog to sniff around, but not touch the baby. When he walks away from baby, then lots of praise and a treat.
When I brought ds home we had 3 ddogs. 2 young ones like you!.
I took ds's socks off and let them sniff and lick them!! They soon got bored and went off!
Never ever had any issues tbh.
They have an absolutely amazing relationship.
Never left alone of course. No ddog needs that sort of responsibility!
Spot the dc!!
@Summerunderway So sweet. I grew up with lots of pets so look forward to seeing my children have that bond. Totally expecting our dog to become "DC's dog"!
We have a big ddog too and ds is finding his confidence around her at last!! He has managed to construct different relationships with every one of them!! 1 even shares storytime every night on his bed! Couldn't have wished for more for them all. Older dc love them but probably take it for granted that they are around now!
We found it really difficult - our dog was a little bit older at the time and I think up until that point he'd been absolutely spoiled and was essentially our baby. We had some conflicting advice which is probably why we struggled in the beginning. Eventually what worked was building up the exposure and keeping everything calm and treating loads for good behaviour. I came across this article which someone sent me recently - pretty spot on from my perspective - blog.gudog.co.uk/baby-doggy-newest-member/