(Closed) Getting Pets Ready For Baby

posted 5 years ago in Babies
Post # 2
Member
4192 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: July 2012 - Baltimore Museum of Industry

We have one cat. I was in the hospital 4 nights due to having a c-section, so when Darling Husband went home for extra clothes, he brought DD’s hat home for Herbie to smell. 

Herbie used to sleep in our bedroom, but early in my pregnancy we shut him out since we were having trouble sleeping. If there are rooms you’re going to want the cats to stay out of, get them used to it now.

Dear Daughter is a little over two months, and Herbie will snuggle next to her when I nurse- ridiculously adorable. Most of my friends with cats say that they were afraid of the babies at first, and I found the only thing we had to worry about was him trying to walk over her, as he does with us.

Post # 3
Member
410 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: July 2015

I have two cats, Bonnie and Terence. Terence is a fairly chill cat, but Bonnie is pretty sassy and we were nervous that she would be very fearful and possibly aggressive towards our baby, since she had quite the hissing fit when my friend came over with her baby while I was pregnant.  Also, I was worried about possible smothering, since Bonnie would often snuggle so close to me that she was right on top of my face. She could have suffocated me if I weren’t able to move her! lol. 

Anyways, what I did while I was pregnant a few times was play some baby crying sounds around her and make sure she got a chance to sniff and rub all the baby stuff. 

We also got this really great friendly cat-pheromone spray called Thunder Spray that also has chamomile in it that has been AMAZING for helping calm her down. We used it the day that Dear Daughter came home. Sprayed it on the car seat, the bassinet that we put her in as well as the couch that I frequently nurse her on. 

She was definitely quite on edge the first few days, and to a lesser extent for 2-3 weeks, but slowly Bonnie has been getting more comfortable and even coming up and sniffing the baby and not getting tense. We make sure to give her a lot of positive reinforcement, petting her and saying “good kitty, Bonnie” whenever she’s around the baby and being fairly chill. 

The thing that at first was getting the kitties really tense and apprehensive was the loud crying of course, so the first week or so, we gave them treats whenever she cried so that they had some sort of positive association.

I think the most important thing is helping the kitties create positive associations with the baby, so defintiely avoid yelling or shooing them away from the baby. Even if they are getting too close for comfort, try to pick them up and remove them calmly. 

For the record, my other cat Terence had very little difficulty adjusting. The crying would startle him during the first week, and after that he was totally mellow, and now will sleep next to her while I’m nursing and he is back sleeping at the foot of our bed ,

Good luck to you!

Pappy8:  

Post # 4
Member
1663 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

We have one kitty, who was very much queen of the castle before dd was born. We set up all the baby stuff pretty early, like the swing, bouncer, etc. so Lacey could get used to new stuff around. When I was in the hospital after dd was born (c section) dh brought some blankets home that had DD’s scent. 

Dd is now 14 months and Lacey isn’t the biggest fan of dd, but she never shows aggression, mostly just stays away. Dd thinks Lacey is the greatest thing in the world and it’s her life’s work to become Lacey’s best friend. 

Post # 5
Member
9819 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: September 2013

I have 2 cats.  I didn’t really do anything to get them ready though.  When I brought her home I let the kitties sniff her and that was pretty much it. 

One of ours is pretty passive and has never bitten (even play biting) and the other is wild and loves to play bite.  I was worried about him but he’s never bitten our 9.5 mo old (even when she got ahold of his tail)…so I think he knows.

The cats aren’t really fans of the baby but the baby is crazy about them!  The cats don’t mind her sometimes, they will try and lay in my lap when I’m feeding the baby sometimes or they will come to me to pet them when I’m with the baby.  I usually pet them when they do that.  Otherwise they run away from her if she’s annoying them.  I try to teach her to pet gently but all she’s interested in so far is grabbing their fur and tails so I try to keep her away unless I’m supervising.  The cats are pretty good at getting away if they don’t want to be near her.

They do tend to worry if she’s crying a lot.  They’ll come into the room to investigate.

I have also taken her to my parents who have 2 kitties.  One of theirs does hiss at the baby so we keep the baby away from him (he doesn’t come to her obviously).  The other two cats she’s met haven’t bothered her, they just keep their distance.

Post # 6
Member
1782 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: May 2014

We have 3 loving cats, so when I have my c section my hubby said he would bring home blankets from the hospital that the baby has been wrapped in and place them on the couch for the cats to smell/cuddle with. I’ve already started playing sounds of a baby crying on my phone to get them use to that sound. I will usually put it up in the nursery room, close the door, and walk around to see their reaction for about 1-2 min. Then I go hide in the room… like I will when baby is here. Last time I did this when I opened the nursery door all 3 kitties were waiting by the door looking worried, but no meowing or hissing. 

Post # 7
Member
3039 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: August 2013

We have 2 cats as well as a 7-week-old baby and things are going super so far!

Baby stuff: the cats love all baby related stuff, so you have to be prepared for that. We’re OK with them hanging out in the stroller and on the changing table, but we’ve established the crib as a cat free zone using the dreaded spray bottle

Cat stress: The only time the cats react towards the baby screaming is if they’re eating, then they can’t focus – so we feed them when he’s happy/asleep

Baby safety: Only one of the cats comes up to the baby, but mostly just to check him out. However, as rebwana stated – they walk where they want to walk, even if that means walking across baby. If we place the baby next to them they’ll stay put, but have never moved in closer

Post # 8
Member
367 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: August 2013

eocenia:  Oh dear LORD that photo is ridiculously adorable! Your cat and your baby are beautiful! 

Post # 9
Hostess
8805 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: Dorset, UK

eocenia:  This is the best thing on the internet. FACT.

Post # 10
Member
3039 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: August 2013

Lillyrose: Thank you! My husband and I made a lot of “Aaaw” sounds that morning. 🙂

MsBeer: You just made me laugh! I’m a firm believer that cats are the best thing with internet, but I guess babies aren’t so shabby either! So here’s one more photo of the two of them…

Note – I would never leave them alone like this, even though I trust our cat, as the baby could roll into his fur by mistake.

Post # 12
Hostess
8805 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: Dorset, UK

eocenia:  Ugh. Just all kinds of cute. This has put a smile on my face which I needed today! 🙂

Post # 13
Member
2211 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: May 2014

eocenia:  Completely adorable!

I’m wondering if anyone else has advice on transitioning a dog…looks like you guys all have kitties!  Our boxer is super friendly and not aggressive at all, but he’s 85 pounds and doesn’t always seem to realize how big he is…

Post # 14
Member
4192 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: July 2012 - Baltimore Museum of Industry

DomesticDiva:  I’ve heard from friends with dogs that bringing home something for them to smell is especially important. Maybe also have a friend with a baby come over to visit, so he’s used to the noise/smells? You also may want to line up a dog walker for the first two weeks. It’s inevitable that pets will get neglected, and having walks taken care of would be so beneficial for both you and the pooch.

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