Being pregnant is an extremely unique and exciting feeling. When the baby starts to show, it makes everything feel real and you will know that it is time to prepare yourself and your home for your new arrival. However, your dog will not understand what you are preparing for and for them, the new member of the pack will appear overnight. It is important that your dog always feels like part of the family, and preparing your dog for the new routine, sights, sounds and smells during your pregnancy is highly recommended. Here are some tips on how to prepare your dog for a new baby.
Let Them Investigate
You should not wait for the baby to arrive to set up new things. You should gradually build equipment and prepare rooms, so your dog can become familiar with some of the new sights and objects in the home. Letting your dog approach new things and investigate everything at their own pace is crucial. You should give them treats, fuss or a game whenever you introduce them to something new.
Introduce New Noises
As well as new sights, you should introduce your dog to new noises. You should start off playing sounds that are associated with babies at a low volume when your dog is doing something that they love, such as eating or playing. You should gradually increase the volume over time, as long as they remain relaxed. Smell is important too, so try asking friends for unwashed baby clothes for your dog to sniff.
Restrict Their Access
If your dog is allowed in every room of the house, you will need to get them used to restricted access. Installing baby gates will make your dog feel calmer when being kept away because they will be able to see and hear everything that is going on. You should use positive reinforcement during this training, so it doesn’t feel like a punishment. Always avoid locking your dog in a crate for long periods.
Change Normal Routines
Dogs love and crave routine. It improves their mood, behaviour, and it is good for you as a pet owner too. However, once the baby arrives, the whole family’s routine will change, and it will be inconsistent for a while. Getting your dog used to this by gradually introducing changes will give them time to get used to this new structure. It will also give you time to correct problematic and unwanted behaviours.
Keep Stocked Up
Keeping all of your pet supplies well-stocked during and after pregnancy is important, as it will keep some kind of consistency in your dogs’ life. You will need plenty of treats, toys, pet food, and other pet supplies to train and entertain your dog. To make things easier, you can find everything you need at Time for Paws. This online pet shop sells quality products for dogs, cats, and small pets.
Many dogs get cast aside when a baby is born, which can create jealousy and stress. Preparing your dog and making them still feel like part of the family is important, so you should start training instantly.