Dogs and Human Babies – Tips to Introduce Them to Each Other
Dogs and human babies are always great company. It’s all about adapting the right techniques in helping them grow together. Find all the necessary information below which will help you make the right choices. It’s essential to give them the right nutrition among the best dog food online which will add to their overall development and keep them healthy and happy around the company of the baby.
A human-canine bond has been growing for centuries, somewhat 15000 years; Bonn-Oberkassel was the first dog who was found buried with the two humans. It must have been one of the major discoveries, a breakthrough in the year 1914. Now that bond has grown with time and can be seen behind almost every door.
When you bring a new pup home, there is a world of preparations, pre-and post-their arrival, to make them comfortable with the house and around the humans so that they can feel safe. Bringing new things for them such as bed, mats, accessories, food, toys and what not just to keep them engaged and motivated, these help in educating new possibilities of helping them socialise.
Even when they are ready to socialise, it is crucial to give them enough space to settle their curiosities about non-living and living things around the house. Imagine a scene, they are finally becoming comfortable around their new home, and suddenly you introduce them to a new human being. Their instinct will activate a defence mechanism automatically against that human, and things will go off the pace in no time.
This response can be subjective, for instance, compare introducing a new member of the family to a 10-year-old and 25-year-old, there’ll be a huge difference in the type of response that you can expect.
You can expect a similar type of response when you are introducing a newborn baby to your pet dog for the first time. The dog might consider the baby as a new chew toy or they might get possessive about its human’s diverted attention. It will give rise to negative emotion in dogs which can later convert into an aggressive response against that human being.
When should you plan to introduce pets to your newborn?
Dogs understand human pregnancy way before a human finds out. Of course, they can’t say it out loud or in a language that we understand, but they can sense changes in our body easily such as a change in odour, facial expressions especially during Braxton Hicks Contractions.
You can understand your pet dog better than any other human because you spend most of your every day with them. You may presume that your dog will get comfortable with your new born with time, but wait, that’s not how things are supposed to be. Yes, your dog is a peaceful being, socialises easily and get comfortable around people in no time, but this will change once your new born is home.
Your attention will be diverted because you will have to care for the new born 24*7 and you might not even get time to play with your dog. It will soon convert into a possessive response to bring back that diverted attention. And when this interference doesn’t end, they might develop negative feelings for the baby, and this will diminish every chance for your pet to get close to your new born; they will treat them as a competition.
To help your pet get used to the new born, you will have to be patient and start from the beginning. Below are some of the major aspects which will help your dog to blend in the change:
- Baby proofing your house: Of course, every parent considers this as one of the first steps to make a welcoming space for the baby. When you have a pet dog around you might feel keeping them away from the room as much as possible. Well, that’s going to pressure the negative side. Making your pet dog familiar with the changes will help them become used too about their actions. You can teach them about never crossing the boundaries; never restrict them to enter the room, try to blend in boundaries and teach them.
- Dedicated space for pets: While you babyproof your house, it is crucial to give your dog its own private space. This will help them learn to get used to their space and can spend time when their pet parents are busy attending the mess.
- Baby phase: Pregnancy involves a lot of changes inside a body, outside space, change in routine, change in eating habit, change in diet and uncountable more. Just like you make yourself useful to such changes, get your pet dog to involve too. Train them not to jump on you and the visitors so that they can take their time to blend in. Use different training techniques to ease this process.
- Make them familiar with the baby scent and noise: This is one of the most important methods which will help them understand how to react when around such fragrance. Once they get used to this scent, it will help them get familiar with the new born when they arrive. You can teach them how to react whenever they sniff that fragrance. Apply the baby lotion on the blanket, bed and toys for the time being.
- Make your pet dog familiar with the baby sounds, put the speaker on the baby’s bed so that they can get familiar beforehand that something is cooking. Notice their behaviour whenever the noise strikes, it may irritate you sometimes, but it will help them become familiar.
- Vaccinate your pet: You must be familiar with your pet’s routine; do you see them biting their skin all the time? It is essential to get them vaccinated or start treatment for their ongoing infections. Seek a vet immediately, and get them checked out. It will keep everyone healthy even the baby at this vulnerable state will stay in a hygienic environment.
- Start their training: Training a pet is one of the most essential parts of their growth. If there’s a baby involved it becomes mandatory. Obedience training should always be step one. You won’t get much time to learn and then train, so hire the experts. They will help your pet understand the sensitivity of the situation. Once they are trained well, it will be easier for you to handle them without causing any mess.
- No-lick policy: Liking a human’s face is one of their way of responding. However, when a new born is about to enter your life, you have to make sure that dogs avoid licking the baby. Both baby and the dog are new to each other, so it is essential to train them accordingly. Dogs must not get this idea that it’s their baby, and you have to make sure of that.
- They usually carry their baby using their jaw and might even scratch them to teach obedience. If they started being possessive about the baby, they might act in the same way they do with their baby. During the starting days or till they get a little old, keep your pet away from them using baby gates and other baby proofing methods.
- However, as the baby grows old, let them understand each other. Supervise their every activity so that you can have total control over the situation. You will notice that they have started caring about the baby.
- Teach your child to respect: This is another page of the same situation. While you spent uncountable days teaching your pet dog ways to become comfortable around the baby it is also essential to teach your child to show respect to the pet. Since dogs are unable to analyse the responses of the babies, this might aggravate their behaviour unknowingly.
- Take them out for the adventures together: Be it walking or a regular play date with your pet dog, start involving your kid in it. Kids growing up with dogs have fewer chances to fall for any emotional disturbance.You just need to take a baby step and give them their desired space and time to become comfortable for one another.
- Don’t panic: It’s no lie that dogs can judge you through your emotions or facial expressions. Whenever you feel anxious about a situation, don’t let it grow on your face. Calm yourself before your dog notices and generate a response. It is said, dogs canunderstand humans through their facial expressions and body language. They can panic after seeing you panic about a certain situation. Whenever your pet dog is around your baby, calm yourself and try to handle things your way. Use every possible method to stay calm so that they won’t panic in any situation.
- Handle your aggressive pet with peace: It is known that aggressive dogs don’t think twice before reacting or acting. Never forget that you are their parent, and they must act obediently with you. Don’t ever fall for their misbehaviours. Simply walk out with your baby from that room, let the dog show its response. It will lighten their behaviour and make them understand the boundaries which they will have to obey at any cost. Try taking away their bowl or a toy to help them realise that it was a mistake and they feel sorry about it. Analyse the situation after some time. Offer them their favourite treat whenever they settle down. Never offer treats when they show any negative behaviour; it will cloud their judgement.
A dog and baby make a great team
Both dog and the baby love each other’s company where dogs are always protective, and the babies love to get pampered. There are stories around the world that have proven this fact again and again. Reshareworthy shared a story about an African dog who lived at Kenya SPCA. She was fed daily as per what the family could afford. One day while wandering around the forest Mkombozi(Dog) found an abandoned baby. She took the baby with her to the shelter where she took care of her puppies. One day, the villagers found the baby crying in that shelter along with Mkombozi who was sitting along with it and her pup.
Another story caught the eyes of the readers where a group of stray dogs helped a baby girl in Haryana who was flowing in a drain. Times of India covered this story in 2019
It is just a glimpse or two of the million other stories globally in which dogs played an essential role in saving the baby. That is why having a pet around your baby is always a privilege. Follow these tips to take better care of your baby while having a dog around.