The coexistence between dogs and newborn babies is a concern for many families.
However, with the right precautions, sharing your life with a little furry pet will not only be a problem for your baby but will strengthen their health in the long run. We show you how!
How to prepare the dog before a baby comes home
The coexistence between your dog and your baby is something that you must organize with time. Just as you won’t wait for new life to come into the world to buy pampers or a stroller, your pet, as a member of the family, it must gradually adapt to its new habits. That way the change will be less abrupt and you will be able to accept naturally that you will no longer be the center of attention in the house.
If you do not educate your dog properly, if it is an over-pampered animal, and it is a pet that does not expose itself to the presence of children, it may be suspicious of its new companion.
Ideally, in this situation, you should go to a professional dog trainer beforehand. With their help, you will get your pet to learn to relate to the younger ones and to accept the hierarchy of your home, in which the animal should always occupy the last step.
The coexistence between the pet and the newborn
Even if you educate your dog perfectly, you must be cautious. Especially in their baby stage, it is not advisable to leave them alone in the presence of the animal. Besides, It is also interesting to observe your dog’s day-to-day life to detect any abnormal behavior in its relationship with the newborn.
Pediatrician Dr. David Geller advises that you should not allow your dog to lick your baby’s face, at least while it is very young. As your child grows older and their immune system strengthens this will no longer be a problem, but in the first few months of life, it can become a source of infection.
Are children who live with dogs healthier?
A study made by the journal Pediatrics concluded that exposure to bacteria from dogs and cats helps strengthen children’s defenses.
The analysis that was carried out with the collaboration of 397 Finnish children and their families, it concluded that living with these animals from an infant age considerably reduces the possibility of suffering from respiratory diseases, infections, and allergies.
Other research stated very similar conclusions such as that conducted by the Dunedin Multidisciplinary Study of Health and Development in New Zealand
But the benefits of growing up with a dog don’t end there. Having to take on some of the care – cleaning, feeding, or walking – growing up with these animals develops your sense of responsibility. Also, checking that their parents trust them with these tasks and that they are capable of doing them well can help build his self-esteem.
The bond that is created between pets and little ones in the house is usually very special. A dog will become in their most faithful friend, a playmate with whom they will learn to socialize and whom you will never forget.
Therefore, dogs and newborn babies are more than compatible. Our only advice is to take the appropriate precautions to enjoy how your baby and your pet grow without feeling fear.