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Family dynamics

22nd Mar 2024

How to prepare your dog for welcoming a new baby

Anna Martin

dog and baby

Many people consider their dog to be their first baby

So what happens when you decide you want to welcome a little human to your family? There is likely going to be some worry.

What if my dog gets jealous? What if they get snappy? Just what if after what if.

Fortunately, there are ways to make the introductions as smooth as possible and they can start before baby even arrives.

When you know you’re expecting

dog and baby
Credit: Getty

You can start getting your fur baby ready for all things human baby from the get-go in many simple ways.

Remember your little one will come with all different sights, smells and sounds that both you and your dog will have to get used to so you might as well start early.

Set out baby equipment: Things such as highchairs, playpens, prams, toys and probably the most important of all; mobiles that move and make noise.

Play baby noises: The shrill cry of a baby might come as a shock to your pet if the first time they hear it is when baby comes home.

To avoid any barking or potentially aggressive reactions play sounds of babies; be it laughing, crying or anything else.

Start them at a low volume and as your dog gets more comfortable, increase it until you reach a realistic level.

Baby scents: Ask your parent friends if they have any unwashed baby clothes and blankets for your dog to become familiar with.

Take care not to overwhelm your dog but introduce these gradually and allow your dog to gently investigate in their own time.

You can associate this time with something positive by giving them a treat or one of their favourite toys.

When the baby comes home

Credit: Getty

All that extra effort will pay off as soon as you bring that baby seat through the door but there are still a few things to remember during the introduction.

  • Greet your dog alone first while your partner, friend or family member waits outside with the baby
  • Once your dog has all their excitement out and calmed down, bring your newborn into the house
  • If you can, introduce them IN a room where your dog doesn’t feel very territorial for example somewhere well away from their food and toys
  • Stay calm, and praise your dog’s calm behaviour too
  • Never leave your dog and your baby unsupervised.



dog,Early days