A baby on the way means making big changes for everyone in a household, including your pet! The new noises, smells and schedule adjustments could be more than a little jarring for your pet. So, just as you are taking time to baby proof your house, you will also want to take steps to prepare your pet for the approaching bundle of joy in order to set the stage for an experience that is both pleasant and drama-free.
If your dog is not already trained, try to master key obedience steps ranging from teaching him to sit and stay so there are no unwanted surprises when you are caring for the baby to teaching him how to fetch and play games that can be played with the baby. Some experts recommend swaddling and carrying a doll prior to baby’s arrival in order to help your pet get better prepared for what’s to come.
If your pet is accustomed to a consistent feeding schedule, try to stagger mealtime to better mirror the inevitably erratic schedule likely to occur once the baby arrives. And when tending to both pet and baby becomes a bit overwhelming, consider hiring a sitter/ walker or drop them off at doggie day care for a few hours a day during the initial weeks after baby comes home.
Introduce your pet to various products and devices that will be new to the household. This way, there will be less chance of your pet becoming spooked or attempting to play with the new apparatuses at the point that it is in use.
Introduce the pet to new environments that will become routine once the baby arrives. Take him to a playground and let him interact with children so he will become familiar with the various smells and movements of kids at play. And it will give you an opportunity to preview his behavior around children.
The key ingredient to helping your pet continue to feel loved post-child is attention. And taking some of these steps in advance can help to pave the way for a joyous new home environment with both baby and pet!
–From our friends at Le Pet Spa, be sure to check them out at 300 Rector Place!