This was a really challenging post to come up with, because there are SO many stories I could tell, but I wanted to share something that was a big adjustment for us, but also that will encourage and help my readers. I thought this would be a great read for all of you mothers-to-be who have fur babies of your own.
Our Shih Tzu, Duke, has been in my life since I was 21 years old. He has been through four moves with me, all the good and bad times and if only dogs could talk- ha! Though he is the best fur baby we could ask for, he does have a bit of a temper and a short fuse when it comes to kids wanting to pet him, etc. So needless to say, we were so nervous bringing a baby home and how he would act. Much to our surprise, other than a few growls (which Brady now hisses back at), Duke has been so great with Brady! We had some suggestions on things to do with your pup, prior to bringing a new baby home and I really feel like these are the reasons why it was a smooth transition. I have listed just a few of these that have worked and have been working for us in hopes that they will help you as well!
- We talked to Duke throughout the entire pregnancy about “baby brother” and included him in our conversations and, more importantly, when we brought home new stuff for the baby. So I would pull out an outfit and say “this is for baby brother” and then give Duke a toy and say “and this is for Duke.”
- Someone told me to send home the newborn beanie from the hospital (that they put right on the baby after being born to keep their head warm) and put it in your dogs bed. Don’t wash it, just let them sniff it out so they recognize the scent and they become familiar with it before the new baby arrives.
- Teach your baby what your dog does and doesn’t like. So for us, Duke loves playing fetch and we have taught Brady how to do that and they both love it. It’s a win/win! When Brady is doing something that we know bothers Duke, we make sure to tell Brady no also. This is a very important one.
- When bringing your new baby home, it is important to let your fur baby meet the new baby by letting them sniff the baby and see him/her. Obviously always supervised. 🙂 And just for fun, here is a short 1 minute video of when we brought Brady home. 🙂