Fur babies! In many cases they were with you before you even started thinking about having a human baby so it is important to make them a part of the process when welcoming one! Our dog, Dallas, was very in tune with me throughout my pregnancy often being by my side when I wasn’t feeling well or enjoying longer walks when I was trying to walk my first daughter out. But I truly wanted to make sure the introduction and transition went smoothly. While I’m no expert in this matter, feel free to consult the AKC, here are three quick tips to introducing your new baby to the furry members of your family that has worked for our family!
1. Take it outside!
Weather permitting, allow the dog or cat, to meet the new baby outside of your home given this is a neutral setting. When we brought our first daughter home we let our sweet dog Dallas come meet her on the porch. He gently sniffed her little toes, we gave him lots of love because we had been away, and then together as a new family we made sure to walk through the door together. As we’ve added each new baby it’s been a bit less ceremonious, but we still make time to love on Dallas and his tradition of sniffing toes is a rite of passage for our babies.
2. Keep a Routine!
I know those early baby days are already so crazy, but work with your partner to ensure that your pets routine stays on track as much as possible. Keep feedings and walks on schedule to allow the pet to feel a sense of balance. It is honestly so fun to go on your first walk with your new baby and fur baby too.
3. Take it slow and everyone will adjust!
As a responsible pet parent, you likely know your dog or cat’s temperament already, but I truly believe we cannot be too vigilant when it comes to pets with babies. Be sure to always monitor interactions between pets and babies! Basically don’t force any interactions as they will eventually come naturally. Our sweet dog Dallas wasn’t so sure of the crying in the early days with our first daughter and I could tell that it would make him a bit nervous. Now by our fourth baby he is an old hand at it, but still prefers to head outside if a true meltdown is ensuing! His time to shine is when I’m nursing. He never misses a late night feeding and shows his love and support by curling at my feet! Seriously this is a bond and devotion I will never in a million years forget.
Bringing home baby is a magical time for everyone, fur babies included, so make sure that you incorporate them into your planning and show them love during those early days too! Chances are they will reciprocate two-fold!