Preparing your pet for the new member

It’s no surprise that many parents worry about how their pet will react to the newest member of the family. Just like any baby, your pet may feel jealous or competitive when your baby arrives. Out of the blue, your pet receives less attention as has changes in his routine, sound and smell. For some it may seem ridiculous, but for all the pet-lovers out there, it’s a huge deal and preparing your pet to ease the transition is something you need to do during your pregnancy.

You can try the following things starting NOW and help your pet get ready for this big change:
• Safety first. Make sure to take your pet to a thorough veterinary examination, check for infections and get a handle on flea and tick control.
• Expose your pet to other babies. Invite some of your relatives or friends with babies, this way your pet can start getting familiar with baby sounds and smells.
• Aggressive dogs. If your pet tends to have aggressive displays of behavior and you’re thinking about keeping him outside the house, begin to take him out systematically before your baby arrives.
• Have your partner bring an object with your baby’s scent from the hospital, before bringing the baby. That way your pet will recognize the smell and understand who is coming into the house.
• Set boundaries around your baby’s nursery. Make that a strictly no pets allowed zone, at least for now.
• When your baby comes, however chaotic your life may become, try to establish a routine for your pet. If you can’t take him on daily walks, get someone who can.
• Create supervised bonding opportunities for your pet and your baby. You can set boundaries for your pet while teaching your baby how to be around pets.

You can always choose to invest on professional training and if you’re not 100% sure that your pet can and will behave around your baby you may want to consider finding him another home prioritizing your baby’s well-being.

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