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How do I prepare my fur babies (2 cats, 2 dogs) for my baby? I know this is far off, but I want to make sure the transition is as easy as possible! What are y'all doing to prepare?<br><br>
We are not allowing the dogs into the nursery, as this is where the diaper pail will be... the dogs have already demonstrated a strong liking for diapers when I watch my nieces (EEWWW!). My real concern is in the Master Bedroom... we are planning to co-sleep with baby (with assist of Arms Reach co-sleeper). The cats usually share the bed with us, and the dogs have their own beds on the ground. Here are some fears:<br><br>
1. Will the cats try to sleep with the baby causing the baby to inhale cat hair or get "squished" by the cat?<br><br>
2. Will the dogs be neurotic when the baby cries and try to jump on the baby to see what is going on?<br><br>
3. Will the dogs stay out of the diaper pail?<br><br>
4. How will I keep up with the dog's walks (3-4x per week for 45min) with a newborn?<br><br>
Can other people relate their experiences with a newborn and their Fur Babies? Am I just being neurotic? Is there any thing else I need to do/buy/prepare for?<br><br>
Thanks!<br><br>
Here are pics of my fur babies:<br><a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/sets/72157604177246953/" target="_blank">http://www.flickr.com/photos/2140269...7604177246953/</a>
 

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I would be interested in hearing other people's takes on this too. We don't have dogs, but our two cats do sleep with us and one of them is very inclined towards jealousy. I've been wondering how to keep her out of the cosleeper myself.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>her_story</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/10812066"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">1. Will the cats try to sleep with the baby causing the baby to inhale cat hair or get "squished" by the cat?</div>
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Maybe, but they can easily be swatted away. I really doubt they'll "squish" the baby and with animals in the house your kid is going to inhale pet hair no matter what you do.<br><br><br><div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>her_story</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/10812066"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">2. Will the dogs be neurotic when the baby cries and try to jump on the baby to see what is going on?</div>
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I doubt it. They might be concerned but I doubt they'll actually *hurt* him.<br><br><div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>her_story</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/10812066"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">4. How will I keep up with the dog's walks (3-4x per week for 45min) with a newborn?</div>
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You're going to be desperate to get out of the house before long. Put the baby in a sling (because most don't tolerate strollers and you don't want to be stuck 20 mins from home carrying a baby, pushing a bulky stroller and trying to walk 2 dogs) and you're good to go. I think you will look forward to walking the dogs. Maybe your partner can take over for a week or two while you're recovering?<br><br>
It really won't be such a big deal <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"> You will all adapt as you're required to- I don't think it needs a bunch of forethought or planning <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">
 

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We have two cats and a dog in the house. When my daughter was born, I was worried about the dog being jealous but she actually became very, very protective. She wouldn't let the cats anywhere near her and never let her out of her sight. It was the most amazing thing I've ever seen in my life. Truly. When she cried she would wine uncontrollably and come find us. Every dog is probably different in how they respond but I think maternal instincts run super deep in all species. As long as you try to include her in what's going on I think dog's adjust very well.<br><br>
Now one cat didn't want anything to do with the baby but the other was so curious she could hardly contain herself. We ended up actually buying a plain wood framed screen door and putting it up in place of a bedroom door. It allowed sound and air to pass but prevented little four legged critters from snooping around unsupervised. It also kept the dog out of the diaper pail. I love my dog and she is a very good dog but the smell and taste of baby poop apparently is just too much to resist.<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/winky.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Wink"><br><br>
There are also those net things if you plan on using a side car or bassinet. I've never tried them so I'm not sure how they work.<br><br>
As for dog walking it all depends on where you live. Is it somewhere where you can put a nice looooong tie out lead out the back door. This would allow dog to get some fresh air during the day from time to time and tide her over till one nice good long walk could be worked in whenever possible. If you live where the tie out isn't really an option and it's <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/cold.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Cold">: to take baby along, I really have no idea, I'm sorry<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/redface.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Embarrassment"> I guess maybe you could hire a nice neighborhood kid to take her out for a good long run. The dog might love the change of pace! I've heard dogs love to chase little boys and girls. Think of it as practice<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/winky.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Wink"><br><br>
I hope i was able to help a bit. All and all we all get along just fine and really never had any problems to begin with, really. All 2 parents, 2 kids, 2 cats, and one very spoiled dog.<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/orngbiggrin.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="orange big grin">
 

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<i>1. Will the cats try to sleep with the baby causing the baby to inhale cat hair or get "squished" by the cat?</i><br>
I have the world's cuddliest, friendliest cats. And they are huge. 14lb and 19lb. Needless to say, I was worried about the same thing when pg with dd #2 (didn't have them w/DD#1). I heard several ways to teach cats to stear clear of baby, but it turns out I didn't need any of them. The cats were totally disinterested and just kept away from her.<br><br>
If you're using a crib, you can get a mesh tent thing designed to keep out cats. You can also try putting double stick tape in the cosleeper/basket/crib/etc before the baby's born. Cats hate sticky on their feet so much, they'll only go in there once!<br><br><i>2. Will the dogs be neurotic when the baby cries and try to jump on the baby to see what is going on?</i><br>
I have a boxer/lab mix. She was only 1 when DD#2 came along. They don't come more energetic, jumpy and "helpful" than a boxer/lab puppy lol. Fortunately, most dogs have a great sense of delicacy when dealing with babies and small children. Sparkle was WONDERFUL with the baby. She would wake up with me when the baby cried at night and walk to the crib with me and that was it. During the day, she'd whine a little if the baby cried and noone seemed to be doing anything about it, but she never got overbearing or zealous about it. She seemed to be ok with the fact that "Mamadog" had it all under control with the "puppy."<br><br>
Of course, you don't want to leave a dog and a baby/toddler alone together ever. Even if your dog is totally trustworthy with the baby/toddler like Sparkle is (she and Glo are BFF's lol), you have no idea how much havoc they can wreak together when you turn your back, lol.<br><br><i>3. Will the dogs stay out of the diaper pail?</i><br>
My dog has no interest whatsoever with diapers. None at all. But I can't keep her out of the cats' litter box. And she eats little people toys. I think that one's totally about your dogs and where you put the pail.<br><br><i>4. How will I keep up with the dog's walks (3-4x per week for 45min) with a newborn?</i><br>
If your dog's a good walker, just use a good sling or mei tai or something and away you go. If your dog's a puller, you might have to have someone else walk with you. I took training classes with Sparkle while pg with DD#2 and that really improved our relationship and I'm comfortable walking her with a baby. Walking her with a newborn and a toddler is going to be fun to figure out, though. I'm sure we'll manage, though.<br><br>
You'll be surprised how things fall together. Animals are very very smart and perceptive. They are also really creative. Odds are the things you worry about before the baby comes won't be issues at all and your animals will come up with something totally off the wall to drive you nuts when he/she arrives. My dog was REALLY interested in nursing. Every time I nursed the baby, she was RIGHT THERE! It was really obnoxious.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>buckysprplmonkey</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/10812794"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">You can also try putting double stick tape in the cosleeper/basket/crib/etc before the baby's born. Cats hate sticky on their feet so much, they'll only go in there once!</div>
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That's a great idea! I'll totally have to try that.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thanks for all the words of wisdom! I get neurotic easily... worrying about things I shouldn't! What great ideas to ease my mind!!<br><br>
One of my cats is very interested in my belly already, so I'm sure that he will bond with her/him once born just fine.<br><br>
Off to investigate dog proof diaper pails!
 

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We had 4 dogs, two cats, and a couple of guinea pigs when ds and dd came along (I have 6 year old twins). All the dogs slept in the bedroom (3 in/on the bed). We really did nothing to prepare them pre-baby. I did stick a cat in the sling once to try it out <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/winky.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Wink"> They all spent a fair amount of time examining all the new items (baby supplies) coming into the house.<br><br>
The cats LOVED my pregnant belly. I spent a lot of time in bed, not on bedrest, but because that was the only comfortable position by the end, and they would sleep on top of my tummy. It was warm and cozy, although it had an annoying habit of kicking them, LOL! I think they were mad when the babies were born and their favorite bed went away. They loved curling up with me to nurse the babies, though (we have some great photos of me in our huge recliner, one baby on my legs cuddled w/a cat while the other baby nursed).<br><br>
James brought clothes and blankets home from the hospital for the dogs to smell (I think maybe a diaper, too, but I was post c-sect and hormonal and don't really remember). None of them seemed particularly impressed when the babies actually came home. They cried a lot and took up all of Mommy and Daddy's time. The dog who was most attached to me would get up with me at first during night-time feedings and the like. That lasted about 2 weeks, then she stayed in bed<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/eyesroll.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="roll"> She'd give me this sad look when I got up, as if she were saying, "what, again?!?"<br><br>
We cloth diapered and coslept (family bed) from day 1. We did start to shut the bedroom door to keep the cats out simply because there were too darn many creatures in the bed otherwise. I never worried about cats laying on babies - it's a myth that cats will "steal" babies' breath, although if I put my child in a crib by itself I'd probably shut the door to keep the cats out simply because I don't think animals and babies should be left unsupervised. If the babies were asleep in the adult bed without an adult, I shut all the animals out. We had a couple of times where one of the dogs would still be asleep in the bed when I got up, and would walk across the kids. No one got hurt but boy did I get mad at the dog for waking the baby. I learned that lesson quickly!<br><br>
As far as having time for the dogs, well, they definitely got short-changed, especially at first. I work in a veterinary clinic, and several of my co-workers volunteered to help, so I asked them to walk the dogs. That helped. And once I was up and about, I'd take a dog with me when I went on a walk with the babies. Those walks really helped everyone. I think having the dogs made me more motivated to get up and moving, which helped me to feel better after surgery. It's a little easier to feel postpartum and sore and exhausted when you're outside enjoying some fresh air. Of course, I'm in California, so the weather was never SO bad we couldn't get out with the babies.<br><br>
None of the dogs ever got into the diaper pail. We had a diaper service with plastic pails, not a particularly fancy lid, but no one ever tried to open it. Maybe we were just lucky!<br><br>
I think having pets has made my kids more gentle and compassionate. They were taught "gentle touches" from early on, because of course the first thing your baby will reach for is the kitty's soft fur and the dog's pull-able tail. They learn to care for other living things. They learned that "animals are forever". They both love our pets and are so very good with them. And my animals were, for the most part, amazingly tolerant of them. We have one big, obnoxious boy cat who can be truly evil at times, but he's the picture of gentleness with the kids. Plus, they're several studies out there now that kids exposed to animal hair and dander have lower incidences of allergies/asthma. Go dust bunnies (or in my house, dust puppies and kitties)!<br><br>
Can I put in my plug for healthy pets to keep your kids healthy? Nothing worse than fleas in the house with crawling babies, so definitely figure out some flea control options (if necessary). And it's a good idea to talk to your veteriarian about preventive deworming, since roundworm infections in animals are almost always asymptomatic, but can infect humans (especially babies who will pet the kitty then chew on their hands, or find the cat litter box - ICK!).<br><br>
BTW, cribs unused by babies make great cat beds and "big kid beds" unused by the same kids who still prefer the family bed make great dog beds<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/orngbiggrin.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="orange big grin">
 

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That's hilarious. I had different cats when pg with DD#1 and they loved my belly. I thought it was just them, but the cats I have now also loved my pg belly with DD#2. It was warm and snuggly. I wonder what the purring sounds like in utero though, ha ha.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>andi-mama</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/10812402"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">Maybe, but they can easily be swatted away. You're going to be desperate to get out of the house before long. Put the baby in a sling (because most don't tolerate strollers and you don't want to be stuck 20 mins from home carrying a baby, pushing a bulky stroller and trying to walk 2 dogs) and you're good to go. I think you will look forward to walking the dogs. Maybe your partner can take over for a week or two while you're recovering?</div>
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Oh, that brings back memories. I fully imagined taking long, blissful walks with two contented babies peacefully sleeping in the expensive double stroller, the dogs walking alongside happily. But neither of my twins would tolerate the stroller for more than brief moments. And they both nursed pretty much non-stop for the first year. So I'd end up trying to push the $*@#&$ stroller one-handed, with whatever baby was most upset in the sling, nursing, trying to jiggle the stroller to calm the other baby, and hold onto the dogs all at the same time. ARGH! Still sitting here hoping for ONE baby this time around so s/he can just live in the sling.
 
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