A pregnancy marks a stage of change in every family’s life. However, those changes can be traumatizing and stressful for dogs. Most expectant parents spend a lot of time preparing for a baby while the dogs are unaware, and babies appear overnight. To ensure that your house is compact and united, here are some tips that you can use to prepare your dog for a newborn baby.
Test out new routines
Dogs tend to enjoy a certain routines as it makes them confident, knowing what to expect and when. When dogs are unprepared for changes in their routine that new babies can bring about making them feel unsettled. To dogs, babies means something new in the household, loud and uncommon sounds and unfamiliar smells. To help the dog to adapt with the new lifestyle and schedule, start giving the dog limited attention and cut on extra walks. Let’s teach your dog safe interactions with baby.
Involve your dog in nursery decorations
When preparing the newborn babies nursery, involve the dog. Let the dog feel and see the new furniture and paintings as this will help him familiarize himself with the changing environment and feel more secure.
Introduce your dog to other babies
Introducing your dog to other babies is a good preparation step. Let your dog know that babies, even though they look different, and are not enemies to be fought. You can encourage positive behavior of your dog around babies by rewarding them with their favorite gifts.
Make new rules
Put in place the do’s and don’ts you would like your dog to engage in when the newborn baby arrives. Setting these rules in advance is very helpful. For example, if you don’t want your dog jumping into your newborn’s baby’s bed, start teaching him to keep out of all the beds in the house.
Practice with a doll
Another way you can prepare your dog for a newborn baby is to use a doll to simulate everyday activities that you will do with the baby, such as feeding and carrying. Your dog’s first reaction to the doll may help you determine the skills you will need to focus on before the newborn baby’s arrival.
Bringing the baby home
First impressions are long-lasting, and you should ensure that your dog has positive experiences with your newborn baby right from the binging. When introducing your baby to the dog, stay calm and relaxed because if you seem nervous, the dog will pick up on your feaeling and become anxious and think that the baby should inspire fear in them. You can also praise your dog for calm behavior and positive interest in the newborn baby.
Teach your dog to love the baby
When introducing your baby to the dog, choose a quiet room, hold the baby in your arms and create an atmosphere of love. As the newborn baby continues to grow, focus on the good things of your dog. You can also try multitasking; when feeding the baby, also provide the dog. When the baby is not around, show your dog that things are very dull. It will make the dog expectant about the newborn baby’s active time and form a good relationship.
Teach your newborn baby to respect your dog
As your baby grows, teach him to respect your dog’s body and belongings. Always act as a supervisor to guide the interactions between your dog and baby. Cultivating a good relationship between a baby and a dog will benefit everyone.
To learn more about teaching your dog safe interactions with baby visit: ASPCA.org
Read this blog about newborn puppies: Newborn pups should be with their mother for at least 10 weeks
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