Cat and new baby - advice please(18 Posts)
We have a nearly three year old much beloved cat. He came to us when DD was 4 so we haven't had to worry about cats and babies before. We are shortly going to have our second child and I am starting to wonder what we should be doing, possibly in advance, to ensure the cat and the baby rub along together.
At the moment, our cat has the run of the house. He tends to sleep a lot in our room during the day but most nights, while he might come in the odd time, he generally sleeps on the landing and comes in in the morning to wake us up to get him breakfast. We will probably just end up closing our door at night to be on the safe side, although DD does sometimes come in while we are asleep and the worry would be that she might leave it open accidentally.
I would prefer not to have to close him in downstairs at night (it is open plan so he can get to food and to his cat stand etc) but is this perhaps our only safe option (in case he decides to cuddle up with the baby I mean - not that I think he would scratch him or her or anything)?
In terms of just generally getting him familiar with the new arrival, are there any tips for the best way to go about this so he is not put out?
I wouldn't worry. I had the same worries when I was pregnant and you hear so meany horror story's. I found that my cat was scared of my little girl when I brought her home but she's fine now. It's been 8 weeks and I never had a problem. My cat sleeps on the bed by me like always and my baby sleeps in her basket.
Babies ==noise and smells of poo!!
Dcat will keep well away trust me!!
Ds was about a year before dcats bothered with him!! And they love him now at 2.6!!
Thanks both. That is really reassuring. I will stop stressing. When I first told people I was pregnant a few of them said, "oh well, you will have to get rid of the cat now, won't you?"
We obviously weren't going to do any such thing but I was getting nervous that maybe I should be putting in place some safety precautions!
No one ever says it about dogs though do they?.
It'll probably ignore the baby once it's investigated the new arrival.
I had all that and loads of people said that the cat would get in the crib and sit on her face. The worst that will happen is that your cat may get jealous and demand extra cuddles. As soon as I put izzie to bed Bella is straight on the bed wanting her cuddles
The cat I had at the time my daughter was born did like to snuggle up in her basket, car seat, pram, cot... but not when she was in them! They are perfectly cat sized after all... he also quite enjoyed the whole blw thing (flying extra edibles) and one day I wonder why the pram was so heavy with all 8lb or so of baby in the top - it was the 10lb moggie in the basket underneath. He was quite content - tho I was like you, concerned. If you have litter, you are ensuring someone else changes it?
"No one ever says it about dogs though do they?."
Oh they do...
I've found cats don't like babies - too noisy, grabby and usually leaking, lol, but yes they do like their empty cat size beds.
Our cats are quite sweet and will lick the baby's head while I'm feeding him. But they mostly ignore him or sit in his bouncy chair/cot/changing table/carseat when he's not in it.
I've got 4 cats (2 moggies, 2 Maine coons) and a 7 week old and I've had no problems. The day I bought her home they ignored her! They DO sleep in her crib etc when she's not in it and one cat often wees on soft things so fur and cat wee have been our issues.
The Maine coons are BIG and a bit daft. If something makes them jump they run and knock stuff in their path, so I watch them carefully and put them in the living room to sleep.
None of them would ever intentionally hurt her or get in with her.
Oh yes one of mine also licks her her head when've feeding!
Our cat was about 4 when our son was born. Cat ignored him for the first year, sat near him or out of reach when toddler ds forgot his manners, and by the time ds was 3 they were best of friends. The only thing I'd worry about is the bucket of tears when cat dies of old age when your baby is a teenager My son was heartbroken when his best friend died.
Our cat was 1 year old when dd was born. When I was pregnant I watched a programme about preparing your home for cats. One suggestion we tried was playing the sound of a baby screaming/crying to the cat. We found a YouTube video and played it via my mobile. The cat's reaction was so lovely and reassured us baby would be fine. He looked so concerned as if he knew help was needed, located source of crying then went and sat near it as if to say don't worry, I'm here. Was the sweetest thing. He largely ignored her as a baby but now without fail he goes to say goodnight to her and sometimes lies at the foot of her bed when she is asleep 😍
Cat also used to put a protective paw on my bump.
Oh and I too got the 'what will you do with the cat comments' when pregnant. ......ignore the heathens.
Our cats were fine when we brought home DD. They sniffed her curiously and then went back to asking for dinner! One loved her and would sit close to her in the bouncer. When she cried loudly one of our other cats (we had six at the the time) would give us a look of "I didn't sign up for this!" and would flee out the catflap until the wailing stopped.
Now DD has her own cat (she's 7) and has learned cat behaviour over the years, i.e. don't try and stroke the cat if the tail is wagging. Strange cats we meet when out walking will always go to her for a chat.
Oh brilliant - thanks all. This is so reassuring.
Eliza our cat hasn't used his litter tray since we started letting him out except once when he had a protest poo in DH's slipper. I think we had accidentally locked the cat flap and blocked access to the litter tray. This is lucky as I wasn't keen on changing the litter when he was using it and would be completely paranoid about toxoplasmosis now!
MrsSiba I will give the crying baby sounds a try - it will be interesting to see how he reacts and get him used to it. Although, bless him, with DD around, he used to a fair bit of high pitched screaming and wailing so I doubt it will faze him.
I think I will buy one of those cat nets to avoid him sleeping in the baby's bed - at least it will avoid the sheets being covered in black hairs.
Ours is oddly intrigued and also bloody terrified of 6m old dd especially since she started crawling.
Before baby arrived people kept asking when I was getting rid of the cat. They got a very short answer from me.
I did put a sheet of tin foil over the crib and pram like a lid before the baby was born. Our cat has never climbed into any of the baby's things even when she is not in them.
Another vote for don't worry.
We had two cats when our children were born. The hardest thing was finding time for the cats. My cling on cat missed me and would try and get close to me whenever he got the opportunity. That included sitting beside me when I was breastfeeding which was very sweet.
They quickly realised that the baby was no threat. But I will never forget the look on his face the first time that my oldest crawled towards him! But they adjusted to that too.
It took until the children were about 6 before the cats actually liked the children though.
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