Your Dog and a New Baby: Navigating Tiny Feet and Paws

Your Guide to a Harmonious Home with Your Dog and New Baby!

Preparing Your Dog for the New Arrival

Understanding Your Dog’s Behavior

Dogs are creatures of habit. They thrive on routine and familiarity. To ease their adjustment, maintain their daily schedule as much as possible. This consistency will help them feel secure.

Basic Obedience Training

Ensure your dog knows basic commands like sit, stay, and leave it. This training will come in handy when you need your dog to be well-behaved around the baby.

Introduce Baby Items Gradually

Start bringing baby-related items into your home ahead of time. This could include baby blankets, toys, and even the stroller. Allow your dog to sniff and explore these items, so they become familiar.

Consult a Professional

Consider consulting a professional dog trainer or behaviorist for guidance. They can provide personalized advice based on your dog’s breed and temperament.

The Arrival of Your New Baby

Initial Introduction

Have a family member or friend your dog trusts bring in a piece of clothing worn by the baby at the hospital. This will allow your dog to get used to the baby’s scent before the face-to-face introduction.

Supervised Meetings

When introducing your dog to the baby, keep them on a leash and closely supervise the interaction. Reward your dog for calm behavior around the baby.

Positive Reinforcement

Use positive reinforcement techniques like treats and praise to associate the baby with positive experiences for your dog.

Maintain Routine

Despite the inevitable disruptions to your schedule, try to maintain your dog’s routine as much as possible. This consistency will help reduce their stress during this period of adjustment.

Addressing Common Concerns

Will My Dog Be Jealous?

Dogs can experience jealousy, but it’s essential to remember that they’re also incredibly adaptable. By maintaining their routine and providing plenty of love and attention, you can minimize feelings of jealousy.

Is My Dog Safe Around the Baby?

With the right training and supervision, most dogs can coexist safely with babies. Always be vigilant, and never leave your dog and baby alone together, especially during the early stages.

What if My Dog Barks at the Baby?

Barking is a dog’s way of communicating. If your dog barks at the baby, it might be due to curiosity or excitement. Use positive reinforcement to encourage quiet behavior.

Can I Still Walk My Dog?

Absolutely! In fact, regular walks can help both your dog and you de-stress. Invest in a quality stroller, and you can even include your baby in these outings.

How Do I Manage Pet Allergies?

If someone in your household has pet allergies, consult an allergist for advice. Frequent cleaning, using air purifiers, and keeping your dog well-groomed can also help.

What If My Dog Shows Aggression?

If your dog displays signs of aggression, it’s crucial to consult a professional dog trainer or behaviorist immediately. Do not attempt to address aggression issues on your own.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1. How do I prepare my dog for the baby’s cries?

Answer: Gradually expose your dog to recorded baby cries at a low volume, gradually increasing it over time. Reward calm behavior during these sessions.

2. Should I let my dog sleep in the same room as the baby?

Answer: It’s generally safer to have your dog sleep in a separate area. However, some families do choose to co-sleep with their dogs, but it requires careful supervision.

3. Can my dog sleep in the baby’s crib or bassinet?

Answer: No, it’s not safe for your dog to sleep in the same crib or bassinet as the baby. Always provide a separate sleeping space for your dog.

4. How do I handle my dog’s shedding around the baby?

Answer: Regular grooming and brushing can help reduce shedding. Vacuum your home frequently and wash baby’s items separately to minimize allergens.

5. What if my dog tries to steal the baby’s toys?

Answer: Teach your dog a “leave it” command, and use it when they try to take the baby’s toys. Provide alternative toys for your dog to play with.

6. Can I still have playdates with other dogs and children?

Answer: Yes, but exercise caution and supervise these interactions closely. Ensure all dogs and children are well-behaved and properly socialized.


Bringing a new baby into your home is a joyous occasion, and with proper preparation and understanding, you can ensure that your dog shares in that joy. Remember, every dog is unique, and what works for one may not work for another. Stay patient, consistent, and prioritize safety at all times. By doing so, you can create a loving and harmonious environment for your “dog and new baby” to thrive together.

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Cat Hocking

Having had dogs all of my life I have learnt so much and continue to learn more with each individual dog that enters our family. These amazing creatures can teach us so much! In the Dog Care Guru I share information, resources and accessories for our canine children.

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