1st Trimester

How to prepare my dog for baby

Hello everyone,

I was wondering if those of you with children and a dog(s) could tell me how you prepared your fur baby for the new baby. I have a 4 year old morkie who is my baby and I want to start preparing him. He is a sweet dog, but he isn't around kids that much. The few kids he has been around have been pretty well behaved, with the exception of maybe 2  and he has dealt with them pretty good unless they are too rough , then he barks at them. I just wanna make sure he is somewhat aware. I know he will not really understand until there is a crying baby in the house.

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Re: How to prepare my dog for baby

  • image agentkitten75:

    Hello everyone,

    I was wondering if those of you with children and a dog(s) could tell me how you prepared your fur baby for the new baby. I have a 4 year old morkie who is my baby and I want to start preparing him. He is a sweet dog, but he isn't around kids that much. The few kids he has been around have been pretty well behaved, with the exception of maybe 2  and he has dealt with them pretty good unless they are too rough , then he barks at them. I just wanna make sure he is somewhat aware. I know he will not really understand until there is a crying baby in the house.

    i have a rat terrier who isn't the greatest with kids. I taught him "touch" for when kids want to pet him. He's very friendly, but little ones sometimes make him uneasy. With touch, he has to let them pet him and be still. I will also ask the child's parents if they can give him a treat and that helps too bc he associates kids with good things like treats or toys

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  • I need to know too. I have 2 Toy Fox Terriers. My boy is 9, he's an angel and loves children and babies. My girl is 3, she's the devil and scared of all humans besides my husband and myself. How do I prep them? I'm only worried she'll be scared of the baby and scream at him or her. Yes, she screams rather than barks... O_o
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  • image TaviaBrad:
    image agentkitten75:

    Hello everyone,

    I was wondering if those of you with children and a dog(s) could tell me how you prepared your fur baby for the new baby. I have a 4 year old morkie who is my baby and I want to start preparing him. He is a sweet dog, but he isn't around kids that much. The few kids he has been around have been pretty well behaved, with the exception of maybe 2  and he has dealt with them pretty good unless they are too rough , then he barks at them. I just wanna make sure he is somewhat aware. I know he will not really understand until there is a crying baby in the house.


    i have a rat terrier who isn't the greatest with kids. I taught him "touch" for when kids want to pet him. He's very friendly, but little ones sometimes make him uneasy. With touch, he has to let them pet him and be still. I will also ask the child's parents if they can give him a treat and that helps too bc he associates kids with good things like treats or toys

    Thank you! That is actually a great idea! We do the treat thing when people come over because he gets so excited and wants to bark and run around the house like a mad man!I will definitely try the "touch" command.

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  • We had a dog when DS was born (he died of lymphoma a year later). To get him ready we bought a very realistic doll. It moved its face while "eating", cried for comfort, and laughed. We played  with the doll around him, held it, and rocked it. My DH even practiced diaper duty with it. LOL. We also put it in all the baby things like carseat, bouncer, ect so that he would know when not to jump and play. We taught him the command "easy" and he new  he had to be careful.

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  • I'm in the same boat. I have a 4 month old German Shepherd and she's wild and jumps on everything so I'm really hoping she calms down by then and learns her commands.
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  • Yeah. Similar to what garden said, we also use a command "gentle." By default he learned to be gentle around the baby. I used to let him be in the room too when I would change her, Feed her, etc. it got him used to her smell and noises. From time to time I will let her touch him when I'm holding her just to get him used to it. The more your dog is just around where he can hear her it helps. I have a Yorkie too who loves kids, and the rat terrier usually plays with him. Now that he's used to the baby around he actually doesn't care that much. Lol.

    just tale your time and don't rush the dog to get used to things. 

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  • Thank you so much everyone, these are such great tips! I love the use of the real like baby and the gentle command!  I am going to use these tips for sure . 
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  • The Humane Society has a great article about this too if you want more tips:

    http://www.humanesociety.org/animals/resources/tips/pets_babies.html

     My cat is NOT going to be happy when she is no longer our only child. :)

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  • Here are a few of my recommendations. When we were expecting, we didn't have a lot of friends with kids, so our dog really didn't have that much experience with babies or children. He has done great so far: 

    - Make any changes asap so the dog doesn't associate them with the baby. For example, if your dog currently sleeps in your bed, but you plan to bed share when the baby will come, kick your dog out of your bed now rather than when the baby comes.

    - Allow your dog to check all the baby stuff out. Don't keep them off limits, let the dog get used to the stuff. We allowed our dog to smell cloths, toys, etc as we got them. We also set out small toys and blankets and taught our dog that they were not his. Dog toys and baby toys look very similar. You have to teach the baby and the dog which are which (our dog is much better at this than our toddler).

    - We did carry around a doll a few times and pretended it was a baby. I don't think this really helped our dog, but we also didn't do it too often.

    - Fix any behavioral problems now, they obviously aren't going to get better after the baby comes.


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  • I have also been told that once the baby is here, have someone take clothes the baby has worn at the hospital and bring them home a day or so before you come home and allow the dog to smell the clothes numerous times and get used to the baby's scent. We are trying this as well as a simple "easy" command for our german shepherds. And treats of course, they won't do anything without treats :)
  • Thankfully, I'm not worried about my dogs. I have two Boston Terriers, my 4 year old is usually jumpy when people come over, so I can see her wanting to jump on and lick the baby, so she'll need to be watched. My 8 year old Bostie is very calm with kids, he was in a family with lots of little ones before he was taken the shelter =[. I've babysat my friends babies a lot so they've been around babies.

    However, they'll always be supervised, just in case.

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  • image MsCrispy:

    Here are a few of my recommendations. When we were expecting, we didn't have a lot of friends with kids, so our dog really didn't have that much experience with babies or children. He has done great so far: 

    - Make any changes asap so the dog doesn't associate them with the baby. For example, if your dog currently sleeps in your bed, but you plan to bed share when the baby will come, kick your dog out of your bed now rather than when the baby comes.

    - Allow your dog to check all the baby stuff out. Don't keep them off limits, let the dog get used to the stuff. We allowed our dog to smell cloths, toys, etc as we got them. We also set out small toys and blankets and taught our dog that they were not his. Dog toys and baby toys look very similar. You have to teach the baby and the dog which are which (our dog is much better at this than our toddler).

    - We did carry around a doll a few times and pretended it was a baby. I don't think this really helped our dog, but we also didn't do it too often.

    - Fix any behavioral problems now, they obviously aren't going to get better after the baby comes.

    All of this. ALSO: If you are planning on using a swing, every-so-often turn it on with a doll in it. Most dogs are scared of the swings & will bark at it so you want to get them used to it before the baby is here.
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  • I second the swing thing.  One of our friends gave us their old one, and I turned it on when I got home.  Our dogs went nuts!  I plan to just turn it on every once in a while and let it run so they can get used to it. 

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  • image WilliamsGirl11:
    I have also been told that once the baby is here, have someone take clothes the baby has worn at the hospital and bring them home a day or so before you come home and allow the dog to smell the clothes numerous times and get used to the baby's scent. We are trying this as well as a simple "easy" command for our german shepherds. And treats of course, they won't do anything without treats :)

    This. Took the baby home and had his first hat and rubbed the smell all over everything my dog owned or regularly came in contact with. I wanted my Akita to associate the baby with "home". Meaning that he would look at the baby as a new addition to the pack and not a stranger. I'll do it for my second one too. It's not easy to control 80+lbs of dog if you don't prepare them correctly. My dog was never allowed on furniture and that stayed in place because I knew I would be sitting the baby on the couch for changing him. All of the babies gear was kept in the living room like an obstacle course, so my dog got used to going around it instead of on top of it or over it. Also if you haven't crate trained your dog I recommend doing so now. The crate will be your dog's "safe house". The one place where he/she can go and know he/she isn't in the way and they are safe and won't be bothered. Mine knows to go to his "house" on command. And trust me it's a lifesaver.

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