Living safely with new born babies and pets

Posted by Argos. January 7th 2015.

Bringing your new born baby into the home and introducing them to your family can be extremely challenging – especially if you have other children and pets.

A new addition to any family can change the dynamics of the house. Therefore, it is really important that you ensure that you prepare and reassure your pets as well as your children.

Family with new born baby and dog

Just as the body changes throughout pregnancy your lifestyle and home life needs to change too.

Although it’s rare nowadays that diseases from pets are transferred to unborn babies it’s still wise to take precautions in order to maintain a healthy household. You should also ensure that your pet continues to feel a part of the family.

Inviting friends and relatives who have babies or small children themselves to visit regularly is a great way to get your pet accustomed to having one in their home – and all the noises that they make.

Health and well-being

It’s well known that stroking a pet can be very therapeutic and a good way to de-stress. However, during pregnancy always make sure that you wash your hands afterwards.

If you have a cat, changing their litter tray will be part and parcel of your daily life. But, to avoid any possibility of contracting the disease – toxoplasmosis, it is strongly advised that pregnant women do not come into contact with their pet’s faeces.

Regular trips to the vet for check-ups and vaccinations are more important now than ever before. Ensuring that your pet is wormed, treated for fleas and claws are clipped is essential for any household with a new baby.

Although the countless videos on the internet of dogs and cats licking a baby’s face may look cute it should be avoided. Placing a cat net over the front of a pushchair, pram or cot will provide an effective sanitary barrier while still allowing your pets to see your baby.

A pregnant lady with her cat

Set your boundaries

Prior to your pregnancy, your pets were probably free to roam around the house – coming and going as they pleased. However, now that you have a new addition to your household, it is important that your pets are always accompanied when they’re around your baby and never left unsupervised.

In order to preempt a potentially stressful situation, gradually set boundaries about which rooms they can go in so that when the time comes they won’t suddenly be banished from the baby’s room.

Training your pets to stay on the floor next to you until you invite them onto your lap is the ideal way to teach them not to jump up on you when you have the baby in your arms.

Love and attention

A new baby calls for a lot of time and attention and it’s easy for a pet to feel their own version of sibling rivalry.

It is recommended that other members of the family begin spending time with the pet in order to ensure that your cat or dog is receiving a good amount of attention.

Taking the time to walk your dog as usual will prevent them from feeling ignored and abandoned.

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