7 Tips To Helping Dogs With Newborns

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Before having my first baby, I was frantically looking for tips to helping dogs with newborns specifically easing them to their new life with a little human.

dogs with newborns post

I had 3 dogs I had to prepare for my daughter’s arrival and I wanted nothing but the smoothest transition possible.

Every year in the United States, there are roughly 4.5 million reported dog bites and about 800,000 of these require hospitalization. About 30,000 of them require reconstructive surgery.

I came across that article and although I never had problems with my dogs biting anyone, I knew I still needed to be cautious and prepare.

All 3 of my fur babies were definitely curious about my progressively growing bump. Especially my only female dog.

I was nesting, washing, organizing, putting together last minute things in the nursery and wobbling around preparing for my newborn. My dogs definitely sensed something was going to happen!

7 Tips To Helping Dogs With Newborns

With these following tips on helping dogs with newborns, it’s very important to be consistent. It’s only going to be confusing for your dogs with your newborn if you go back and forth on your ground rules.

1. Bring your baby’s scent home.

By bringing your newborn baby’s scent home like their blanket or clothing item, it allows your dogs to get familiarized with his or her scent.

This is a very important first step that’s helped our 3 dogs get accustomed to 3 newborns!

2. Allow your dog to sniff your newborn (one at a time).

The first step was bringing your newborn’s scent home. The second step is bringing your baby home and allowing your dogs to make the connection to your baby’s scent.

I never let all 3 of my dogs sniff my newborn at once. I found it to help ease any anxiety my dogs had by taking a seat and letting them come in one by one to meet their new baby.

3. Create time to snuggle with your dog.

dog sleeping with newborn baby

Making time for your dogs even with a new baby shows them that they have not been forgotten.

You may or may not be comfortable having your dog snuggle up with you while your baby sleeps on you. Or you might be more comfortable snuggling up with your fur babies after you lay your newborn down in their bassinet.

The whole point in creating time to give your dogs affection is to minimize jealousy and resentment they may feel for your newborn baby.

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4. Talk to your dog while holding your baby.

dog with newborn baby

Talking to your dog while holding your baby shows your dog that they can be in the same place together receiving love from the same person.

It gets easier after some time and after more babies being able to multitask giving everyone in your household love! You’ll notice everyone needs love from their mom.

An example of how I’d show my dogs that they are still loved while being a new mom was by sitting outside with my husband and daughter. My husband and I would take turns holding our daughter and playing fetch with our dogs.

5. Be consistent.

The quicker you set your standards and create a nurturing foundation for your dog and newborn baby, the easier it’s going to get. Being consistent is very important.

If you don’t want your dog licking the baby, let that be known right off the bat and stick with it. Each parent and dog owner is going to have their own individual preference. But whatever your preference is, make sure you don’t go back and forth to minimize any confusion.

6. Exercise your dogs.

A tired dog is a happy dog or a tired dog is a good dog (something along those lines).

Dogs are better behaved when they’ve expended all of their energy. Ways to expend your dog’s energy is by taking them on a walk. Put your baby on your chest in a wrap or a stroller and make it a habit to go on daily walks!

If walking your dog is something you know you won’t have time for, you could always hire a dog walker!

7. Separate your dog’s food from the baby.

This one is later down the road. But your baby will be crawling and rolling before you know it. Make sure to remove your dog’s toys, treats, and food out of your baby’s reach because of two reasons.

One – you don’t want your baby choking on anything. Two – dogs can get territorial about their food and the last thing you want is for there to be any accidents.

dogs with newborns tips

Don’t Stress

You know your dogs better than anyone else. Keep in mind that bringing your newborn baby home is a big transition for your dogs as well. But hopefully these tips on helping dogs with newborns help with a smooth transition!

Even after bringing 3 babies home, we never had an incident where our dogs bit or nibbled at our babies. However, there have been times where I noticed some acts of jealousy from my dogs such as chewing up the baby’s toys.

So I took it as a sign that I needed to give them more attention and more exercise!

dogs affection with baby

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  1. This is such a good thing to think of! I really had to work with one of our foster dogs before we had a baby because we didn’t know his past. I’m glad we inadvertently worked with our other two dogs. This is a great thing to work on before baby comes.

  2. I love these tips! I don’t have a dog, but I have 3-year-old twins, and we are considering getting one. I’m sure these tips are great for introducing dogs to any new children.

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