How did your Dogs react to your HB? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 27 Old 01-02-2009, 01:00 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Everyone says when you have a baby to bring home to the dogs a cap or blanket that baby wore - so they can smell baby's scent before you bring him home from the hospital.

We did that when DS was born. But now that I know I want to plan a HB for #2 (whenever that may be) I'm wondering how they'll react to the emergence at home.

I suspect they'll comprehend, based on smells, that this new creature is part of me & part of our "pack." Plus, they are already used to the weird sounds that come from a little human.

Of course, me yelling in pain will spook them - as it did when I labored at home with DS, but they'll get over that.

Just wondering what others experiences were. TIA!
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#2 of 27 Old 01-02-2009, 01:54 PM
 
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We had a HB with two dogs, a german shepherd mix and a schnauzer. They took to her real quick.. they wern't there during the actual birth, but when they came back, we just let them sniff her (very very supervised, DH held them) and they kinda snorted and then went about their business, no big deal.
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#3 of 27 Old 01-02-2009, 03:11 PM
 
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My chihuahua was like a junior doula at my homebirth. He was very interested in what was going on and tried to console me whenever possible. In transition, I was in the birthing pool and it was so comforting to be able to reach down and stroke his furry little head during the worst contractions. When I was pushing on the bed, he was running back and forth on the floor, begging someone to put him up there with me. I thought it was funny (it might have annoyed everyone else though).

After Felix was born we carefully allowed the dog to sniff his hand and receiving blanket. He kept his distance and seemed to know that he had to be very careful around the baby. We have always slept with the dog under the covers at the foot of the bed, and that night was no different. Now he and the baby are best friends and he's extremely protective of him. If someone other than DH or I handles the baby, our dog is watching like a hawk. You'd better not mess with his friend! :

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#4 of 27 Old 01-02-2009, 04:44 PM
 
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My dog at the time of DS1's birth was also like a doula - she stayed right with me, ignored strange people (the mw & her assistant) completely in favor of being supportive to me, and left the room of her own accord when things got too intense for her for the last 15 minutes or so. She did think it was REALLY wierd when I fainted in the shower and had to crawl back to bed

She was also clearly attached to and protective of DS1, although sadly, she died when he was 6 weeks old.

Here as mama to W (2/04), R (5/06), D (7/09), and J (12/9/12!), co-parenting with my DH

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#5 of 27 Old 01-02-2009, 10:55 PM
 
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I was wondering this too, my dog has been acting really weird already and I'm only 20 weeks. She totally knows somethings up! If she starts driving me crazy when I'm in labor I'll send her away....

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#6 of 27 Old 01-02-2009, 11:17 PM
 
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My dog and the 4 cats are all acting weird around me and I am 14 weeks... I was wondering about this also. Interesting.
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#7 of 27 Old 01-02-2009, 11:39 PM
 
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My two dogs didn't act any differently during my pregnancy or during my homebirth. Although it was a very short labor and birth, less than 2h, and it was the middle of the night, when the dogs are typically sleeping.

My dogs are tolerant of children. But they also have their safe places, their crates.

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#8 of 27 Old 01-02-2009, 11:52 PM
 
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Good thread! I'm keeping my dogs home for the birth (I work at a kennel, but still.....) I get so much peace and comfort from their presence. They were so good with DD, but if they get a bit wound up at first about the guests coming into the house, we may crate them till they chill. But I love the idea of being able to snuggle a bit when i'm in pain we'll see

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#9 of 27 Old 01-03-2009, 12:31 AM
 
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ours was a little protective of me during pregnancy, but super jealous/protective when there were strange dogs around. but in labor, she came to check me out a couple of times, then snored like a freight train the rest of the time. after ds was born, she checked him out and LOVES him and wouldn't leave my side or the end of the bed.

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#10 of 27 Old 01-03-2009, 01:09 AM
 
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One of my dogs died the week before DD2 was born so that was unexpected. My remaining dog was very worried about me, he spend my labor pacing though the house and then nudging my hand to make sure I was ok. Towards the end of my labor, he started to really to drive me nuts so I had DH lock him in the bathroom until after the baby was born. We let him out right after, and was fine, trying to smell and lick the new babe.

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#11 of 27 Old 01-03-2009, 01:26 AM
 
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My sweet pup passed away 2 weeks before Christmas. He was at the births of all my kiddos. He was a little freaked out when I was in labor with ds1...he actually jumped into the birth tub and popped it the morning I woke up w/ ctx. He howled on porch for a few hours when I was really vocal. Once ds was born he was so in love and protective of the new babe. With the 4 others it was just par for the course I suppose because he didn't really take much notice. He always had his obligatory sniff of the baby but was never bothered by the new addition.

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#12 of 27 Old 01-03-2009, 01:11 PM
 
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I haven't actually had my homebirth yet, but we had a dress rehearsal the other night. My boxer had to greet everyone and say hello (which is normal for her). She then went to lay on my son's bed (also normal). She would come out to check on things if my friend laughed a little loud or if I moaned a little loud with my contractions. We just had to assure her that everything was ok and she would go back and lay down. It will be interesting to see how she acts for the actual birth.

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#13 of 27 Old 01-03-2009, 02:07 PM
 
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Our 75+ pound lab/shepard mix was great when it was just us, labor sounds and all. She got a little freaked when everyone showed up, but she always gets super excited when people show up so that wasnt' that surprising. I think if we had gone UC, or if labor had lasted longer and she had a chance to adjust she would have done fine.

Our other dog a Corgi, was actually in our room with us when I gave birth She just hung out in her crate and watched the excitement unfold and never made a peep.

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#14 of 27 Old 01-03-2009, 02:56 PM
 
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my dogs hung out on their dog beds in our bedroom while i labored in the birth pool (in the kitchen) and gave birth in our livingroom.

i honestly don't think they cared at all. they met her after she was born, gave her a sniff, and went back to their beds. i was hoping they'd have been more interested, but they weren't in the slightest.

it wasn't until the baby was here and crying in the middle of the night that they would look at us like "hey, we're trying to sleep. can you do something about that little person crying in your arms?"
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#15 of 27 Old 01-03-2009, 06:48 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Eman'smom View Post
Our other dog a Corgi, was actually in our room with us when I gave birth She just hung out in her crate and watched the excitement unfold and never made a peep.
I have corgis One pembroke one cardigan. My pembroke is my snuggle boy though, I think he'll be most worried, and the other sounds like your dog!

mom to Reaghan born underwater into midwife's hands 1/17/07 & Myra born surrounded by doulas and midwife at home 1/12/09. Birth Educator, and Photographer, Baby #3 Coming May 2013!

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#16 of 27 Old 01-03-2009, 06:54 PM
 
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Great thread!
I'm hoping to have my dogs around for our homebirth. The older one will likely fret a little and want to be close, the younger one will likely be oblivious. I'll let you know how it goes!

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#17 of 27 Old 01-03-2009, 07:43 PM
 
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My dog has been with us for 5 hbs going on 6. Shes usually around while I am in labor, shes a great comfort. Then after the baby is born she comes in and sniffs around the baby and looks at the baby. And thats usually that. She sleeps by the bed afterwards though, maybe she thinks the baby will fall out the bed and she will be there to pad the fall lol.

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#18 of 27 Old 01-03-2009, 07:52 PM
 
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with my first HB i sent my dog (german shepherd) to my mom's, with my 2nd, I didn't have time. And she was wonderful. I woke up had a crazy strong contraction, she followed me downstairs and stayed with me until my mom got there. then she just layed around watching. And she didn't have any issues with either child, she is a very wonderful family dog.

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#19 of 27 Old 01-03-2009, 08:49 PM
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I have two Italian Greyhounds. They are spazzy anyway, but they were more concerned about all the "visitors" we had in the house than the baby. Once everyone was gone, they warmed up to the babe in no time.

-zak- Mama to three fantastic sons - 2005, 2007 & 2010 and expecting a daughter February 2012!

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#20 of 27 Old 01-04-2009, 03:13 AM
 
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During my pregnancy, my dog (a Malamute mix bitch) got protective of me and snapped a few times at my DH's dog (a male cattle dog/pit mix), presumably when she thought he wasn't acting right around me. She's never done that in other situations though.
During labor and birth, the dogs ignored the whole thing. Shortly after birth, I asked where the dogs were and the male crawled out from under the bed (where he sleeps), and she was asleep in the hallway. Didn't phase them in the least.
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#21 of 27 Old 01-04-2009, 11:05 AM
 
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Not dogs, but I did have cats attending DS's birth. The really outgoing bratty kitty was actually on the bed for the birth itself. It freaked him out a little -- he wouldn't let me come near him for a few days afterward. They've all been really good with DS. When he was first born they sniffed at him a little and mostly ignored him otherwise. Even now in his grabby/chasing phase none of them have taken a swipe at him.

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#22 of 27 Old 01-05-2009, 01:07 AM
 
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I love this thread, I've been very curious about this. We have a wonderful retriever. She is very protective over me, doesn't let me go into another room without her!
So, I've been curious about how she would be at my home birth. Sounds like most of you had great experiences though, I really hope for much of the same!

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#23 of 27 Old 01-05-2009, 05:25 PM
 
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We don't have much of a choice, since I get the feeling that my midwife doesn't really care for our pug. But we also live in a small apartment and there really wouldn't be much of a way to pen the dog if he got to be really annoying or stressed (even in a crate, he would be stressed if we were right there making noises and such), so we are going to have grandparents-to-be come and get him, maybe even watch him for a day or two.

He's a sweet animal and loves us, but he's totally wrapped up in himself. My mother was pregnant while we had a sweet female boxer/terrier mix. That dog absolutely tuned into her pregnancy and loved to lay on her lap wrapped around her growing belly. When Mom was sick, the dog was sick. She watched my mom like a hawk. We were afraid that this would translate into jealousy towards the baby, but she took that in stride too and adopted and protected the baby, tolerating ear and tail pulls and toy stealing like a true little mama. That dog would have made a great HB doula! Ours would be more of an anxious 3-year-old (actually he turns 4 on Thursday) wanting to be reassured and to
"share the love", backrubs, etc. I think he'll be happier playing with my parent's dog and running around their yard.

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#24 of 27 Old 02-25-2009, 05:56 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Oh, just remembered a funny dog-pregnancy related story. For grooming, we take our schnauzers back to the breeder where we bought them. She always has lots of puppies around... so of course I like go visit them.

When I was about 5 mos along, there was a couple there looking at puppies. The breeder brought out 3 un-fixed females. We were all sitting around on the floor with these puppies running around and one of them tried to lift her leg to pee on my leg! I pushed her away, but she came back later and did actually start to pee on me!

First, I never see females lift a leg to pee. Second, why on me?! And obviously she wanted to pee on me - not any of the other 4 people. I figure it had to have somethign to do with pregnancy hormones. Maybe I was competition for breeding?

When male dogs pee on something, they're declaring ownership - claiming it as their territory. Not sure if a female has the same intent. In which case, was she welcoming me & my baby as a member of her pack? Ha!
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#25 of 27 Old 02-25-2009, 06:06 PM
 
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During my first labor (hospital birth but labored at home) My dog (75lbs Husky-Shepard mix) sat patiently beside me during contractions and gently licked my face between them. She was a very calming presence. I wish that she could have come to the hospital with me.

I didn't really see her at all during my homebirth. For my homebirth I spent the majority of my labor on the toilet. (It was only a four hour labor) She doesn't come into the bathroom at all unless we tell her to get into the tub for a bath. So she didn't comfort me like she did before. When I got into the tub she was banished to outside. She wasn't being bothersome, but she is a large dog and there were a lot of people in our small apartment. Normally she cries pitifully if made to stay outside, but she watched the (water) birth patiently from the patio door.

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#26 of 27 Old 02-26-2009, 12:42 AM
 
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My chihuahua was like a junior doula at my homebirth.
that is too cute!!
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#27 of 27 Old 02-27-2009, 05:20 AM
 
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Good thread! I'm keeping my dogs home for the birth (I work at a kennel, but still.....) I get so much peace and comfort from their presence. They were so good with DD, but if they get a bit wound up at first about the guests coming into the house, we may crate them till they chill. But I love the idea of being able to snuggle a bit when i'm in pain we'll see
update- they did amazing. During labor they were my constant companions, at one point my female corgi put her front paws onthe birth ball, between myself and my doula, she was trying to help! But there were times my feet were really cold, and she would sit on them, or my male corgi would sit beside me, and I would stroke his ear, it was so nice having them there. For the birth itself, we closed them in my daughters room though. they seemed relieved when let our, to see I was ok, and smell the new baby!

mom to Reaghan born underwater into midwife's hands 1/17/07 & Myra born surrounded by doulas and midwife at home 1/12/09. Birth Educator, and Photographer, Baby #3 Coming May 2013!

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