Pets and Newborns

Updated on March 18, 2008
M.A. asks from Saint Petersburg, FL
68 answers

I am 33 weeks pregnant and I have a small maltese mixed puppy. I know a lot of people have their opinions on wether you should have a dog and a newborn in the same room but I just don't know. I've gotten so many people critizing me on keeping my dog instead of selling him but I just don't know what to do. To help with the problem we bought air purifiers in the room so it collects any dust or odors. My puppy doesn't shed and he's really good around children. Is it really that awful to have a puppy and a newborn?

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So What Happened?

I have done a lot of research on the topic thanks to everyones advice I realized that everything will be fine and I'm not nervous about it anymore. I tried the doll thing and it worked. I'm due anytime now. Thanks evereyone.

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R.C.

answers from Tampa on

Hey M. I have an 8 month old and when i was pregnant i wondered the same thing because i have a chihuahua and he is very protective of me and my husband. I never rough housed with him but my husband does and i was afraid that when the baby came he would get jelouse and freak, but he didnt. he allows my daughter to stick her hand in his mouth and pull his hair and he does nothing. you sould probably start pulling on his tail and ears and bothering him when he eats so that he gets used to being annoyed. i dont think you should get rid of the puppy. good luck lemme know if you have any questions

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K.R.

answers from Melbourne on

I have a 3 year old pug and my son is 15 months, I too was afraid how my dog would do with the baby and my groomers told me that when my baby was born to have someone bring the hat that the baby had worn or a blanket that he used in the hospital so that he can be use to the smell of the baby. The day i brought the baby home he sniffed the baby and stood right by the baby's side from then till now he is tyhe big brother and he is where ever the baby is he will sit by the baby room when my son sleeps and the good thing is that he does not play bite the baby when he grabs at the dog. so for me I think it is alright to have a baby and a pet. good luck
kimmy

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B.P.

answers from Tampa on

As long as the puppy is not agressive towards children, it should be fine. The medical studies have shown that children exposed to pets from birth actual have less allergies. Unless someone smokes around the baby then that cancels out any benefit. I have two dogs, they adore my 11 month old and he thinks they are great. But we did have another dog that was agressive and territorial around other dogs and children, so we gave him away before we had my son.

More Answers

C.

answers from Daytona Beach on

Hello, I am veterinary technician, been in the business for years now, and also own 2 dogs, 1 cat and I am the proud mom of my first baby girl, now 2ths old. I can tell you in confidence that there really arents any health risks associated with babies who live in households with pets, actually, it decreases the risk of MOST babies becoming allergic to pet hair/dander, etc b/c they are introduced at a very early age. The only danger from a pet may be that they can get overexcited/jealous and unintentionally bite/scratch your little one, and a litle bit of hair/dust nevery hurt anybody. Always supervise your little maltese when around your baby, never leave baby where doggie can get at her (i.e, on the floor, etc) and all should just fine. EVERYONE has an opinion girl, most of the people that are telling you to get rid of your pet probably arent pet people to begin with, or had never grown up with pets. Your fine, your baby will be fine, so will doggie. P. S. To get my dogs ready for baby I carried around a little doll and loved and cooed over it, first my dogs got jealous, then they paid me no nover mind, you may want to try that trick, also, and make sure you slowly introduce doggie and baby. Feel free to contact with any questions, pet or baby alike. Good Luck and Congrats!

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A.B.

answers from Miami on

hello Melissa,
Don't worry about your pet,I have a little girl she just 1 year old and she loves my dogs (2) and they know how to keep away from her. First bring any clothe from the hospital, let him smell everything. If you really love your pet keep him. and be happy with your family new member.

Good luck!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
A.

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M.

answers from Jacksonville on

I am a mother of 4. I have a 21yr old, 19yr old, 17yr old and a 22mos old. We have always had dogs and cats in our house and none of my children have ever had any problems.
A little hint: before you bring the baby home from the hospital, have someone take a blanket, or some item the baby has worn, home for your dog to sniff and get used to the scent. This will help with curiosity when you get your baby home.

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R.H.

answers from Boca Raton on

WELL DARLIN I HAVE TWO AND WHEN THEY BORN I USED TO HAVE 3 DOG SMALL AND NEVER THANK GOD NOTHING HAPPEN, IS REALLY NICE TO HAVE A PET, IS BETTER IS A DOG. DONT SELL IT, IS NICE TO HAVE..A DOG. THERE CLEAN AND HELPFULL..
KEEP YOUR DOG AND ENJOY BOTH THE BABY AND THE DOG, WHEN THE BABY GET BIG THEY WILL BE BEST FRIEND...

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M.B.

answers from Miami on

HI There is nothing wrong with having a pet. There being in the same room nothing wrong. Just make sure that the puppy gets to feel that it is part with the child. take time and teach the dog how to behave aruond the baby.

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T.F.

answers from San Francisco on

It is FINE to have a pet(s) around a newborn! The best advice has already been given and that's get your baby's room set up so the pet is used to it. I have multiple cats and we set up our baby's room a couple of months ahead of time. By the time baby came the cats understood the room and the baby's things were "off limits". There are many studies that show children with pets develop less allergies. It's a myth that a cat (or small dog) will climb in a crib and strangle a baby. But if you're worried about that train your pet that the baby's things are "off limits". Spend as much time with your pet when the baby comes as you can so your pet is not jealous and doesn't act out. Having a pet will help you raise a compassionate, responsible child. Don't let people bully you with their opinions, you have enough on your mind right now. And lastly, your puppy is a member of your family, how can people expect you to "get rid of it"? Good luck to you.

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W.C.

answers from Miami on

Everyone and their mother's will tell you to get rid of your pets for whatever reason, at least that's what I got. I did not get rid of my pets, and decided that I wouldn't unless the baby was allergic or they attacked the baby. YOu do what is best for you and your family.

What someone told me was get a baby doll and put a onesie or clothing that your baby will wear, on it. Carry it like if it were your child to get the dog used to another being and not having so much attention. ALso, before you go home from the hospital, have someone take an article of clothing (hat, Blanket) that the baby has already worn in while at the hospital and let the dog smell it and be around it, so he gets used to the actual smell and the baby being around.GOod Luck and COngrats!

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S.L.

answers from Boca Raton on

Unless you believe the dog may have aggresive tendancies, there is absolutely no need to get rid of your dog! I have 3 dogs (border collie and 2 pit bulls) and a cat and they are all wonderful with the baby. My son is now close to 14 months old and none of them has ever done anything bad to him. They all play with him. He's just another member of "the pack". The border collie plays ball with him all day and even sleeps under his crib at night to protect him. The cat, who still has his claws, lets him crawl all over him too. After you have your baby, have someone bring home one of the baby's blankets with his scent on it so the dog can get used to it while you are in the hospital. Just watch the dog and the baby VERY well when you first bring your baby home. If you and your dog are very close, he will take his cues from you and understand how precious the baby is and not harm him. Children need to grow up with animals. It makes them better human beings. Good luck to you - keep your dog!

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A.C.

answers from Sarasota on

Hon, don't panic at the thought of your sweet little dog harming your baby. My mother in law has a jack russel whom she treated like her baby, but when MY baby was born, she wouldn't even let her dog NEAR my daughter. Now, if that was another child, all they would understand that this new being is getting all the attention and they would get jealous and act out. So one day when my daughter was about a week old, I let the dog come over (much to my mother in law's panic) and all she did was sniff sniff sniff, then licked my child's big bald head. My daughter is now 13 months and they get along wonderfully and have never had a problem. You have to introduce them and make sure your dog doesn't feel left out and you shouldn't have any problems. IF you do, then worry about what to do with your dog. Great idea with the air purifiers too... Good Luck and Relax!
-A. C ([email protected]____.com)

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C.J.

answers from Tampa on

Echoing many of the responses to your question, I would first consider asking yourself if your puppy may be aggressive towards your newborn. Being a puppy, it may be too soon to tell because it's going through its growing stages as well. In my experience with pets, rearing puppies with children is more preferable over introducing adult dogs to young children, especially babies. Of course, some adult dogs are great with kids, but some aren't. The fact of the matter is that no matter how domesticated our pets are, they are still animals and subject to their own inclinations.

I know your message didn't talk about cats, but I wanted to add that while having cats around young children may decrease the possibility of allergies because of the exposure factor, I personally would never have a cat in the same house as a newborn. One mom mentioned cats possibly laying on a newborn and suffocating it...that actually happened to my friend, but thank goodness, she was able to shoo her cat off. Choosing her baby over the cat, she gave it away the next day. The other important issue is the fact that cats carry a bacteria in their feces that when tracked all over the house, can cause your child to be sick. This is one of the main reasons why OB/GYNs frown upon pregnant women being exposed to cats or at the very least, dirty litter boxes. Don't get me wrong, I LOVE cats, but I wouldn't have them in my house being pregnant and/or with newborns. In fact, as far as pets go, I'll get pets when my last kid is six...at that age, they'll be able to take care of our pet(s) as they should.

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K.A.

answers from Tampa on

Don't listen to people!!!!! Do what ypu think is right!!! I have never had a problem with my sons & my dog. She's a black lab & my 2 year old tries to RIDE her!!! I would suggest getting the baby stuff out so the pup will get used to the movements,noises,lights ect... Also--have someone bring a blanket to the hospital & wrap baby in it for awhile & then let someone bring it to pup to "introduce" them BEFORE you bring baby home!!!
Good luck & calm down--pup will love baby & IF there is a problem--your choice will be veeerrrrrryyyy easy!!!

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M.E.

answers from Ocala on

When i was pregnant with my daughter we had gotten a little dog. During my last few months of my pregnancy the dog would sit on my belly and never leave my side. The day i brought my daughter home he was waiting for me at the door. He sniffed her and walked all around her seat and then he sat next to her all night long. Dogs have a sense that us humans cant explain. Till this day our dog still stays by the kids and if someone goes near them that he dont know he is right there to protect them. I think having a dog with a baby is ok. But you need to prepare the dog for the baby. I did with introducing him to a baby doll wrapped in a blanket and showed him everyday that mommy was holding a new baby and just show him that he is still loved.

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K.F.

answers from Johnson City on

M.
My mom had a long haired persian cat when I was born who was 8yrs old at the time the cat was not sure about me mom said for awhile and then got used to me and when I started crawling and walking the cat took the higher ground lol My mom's parents also had a dog that was a part collie and part sheep dog that they bought two months before I was born I grew up with the dog and he was sometime more protective of me than anyone else in the family..Personally I don't feel that you have to give up your animal's when you have a baby as long as the animals are not agressive..I did fine with cats and dogs growing up and my mom's cat had been queen of the house for years before I cam along mom just made sure that she got attention also so she did not feel left out...Keep your dog and enjoy your new baby you all will be fine :-)

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T.H.

answers from Jacksonville on

Hey hunny,
I have a story for you, though I am sure ur bundle of joy is around already, When my son was born I had a golden retriever, and that dog was just like "nana" from peter pan, he guarded my son and kept him safe, even would herd my son back onto his blanket as he started to crawl. I hope all is going well with you in this new year. Just wanted to share that story with you.

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R.H.

answers from Tampa on

Hi M.,

When my daughter was born, I had a Shih Tzu puppy. Ever since Day 1 they got along great! Tell your friends who critize you that children that grow up w/ pets from birth have a lower chance of developing a pet allergy. My pediatrician told me that. So, if your puppy is very friendly and non-aggressive, there is absolutely no reason to selling him. Now my daughter is 18 months old and absolutely loves playing w/ my dog. Her first word was Mommy, and her second was doggy :-)

Keep your dog, and try not to worry so much. Everything will work out :-)

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S.M.

answers from Lakeland on

I am the mother of a 5 1/2 month old daughter and we also have an 85 pound dog. Ofcourse I don't let him in the living room when she is on the floor but he comes in there if she is in her swing or bouncy seat. He is very gentle and tolerant with children ( I also have an 8 yr. old boy that has done everything possible to that poor dog). We had people ask us too about getting rid of the dog when the baby was born. But I grew up with dogs in the house my whole life and I think I turned out alright. Of course this totally depends on the dog and it's tolerance to children. Mine could care less that there is a baby in the same room just as long as he has room to spread out on the floor and take a nap. You'll know right off how your dog is going to adjust to the new baby and I say if the dog is fine with the new addition then may you all live happily ever after.
Good luck.
S.

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K.H.

answers from Jacksonville on

Our dog is our first child. There was no way we were going to give her up. You have to do what is best for you and your family. I would just politely nod my head and say thanks for the advice. Then I would do what I felt was in my family's best interest. I would recomend not leaving the dog alone with the baby ever. Even though our dog is the gentlest of souls, I do not leave her with my son alone in a room. They do have animal instincts and usually cannot reason right from wrong. They may not mean to do something; but if they feel threatened...
Hope this helps.
K.

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D.J.

answers from Tampa on

Hi M..

I do not know too much about Maltese dogs but I know that if the dog is friendly kids love pets, pets help kids cope with difficulties and the say that kids that are near animals have less allergies.

I am a single mom with three kids and I would not worry about the air purifier unless the doctor indicates that you need to.

Good luck with the baby. I hope you have a good support network in the area. Even if you do not you would be suprised how much people pull together to help.

D.

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B.G.

answers from Pensacola on

Hi there, I am a 26 year old new mom with a 5 month old baby and a year old maltese mix. Our dog is wonderful around our son, and he is starting to really love her also. I, of course, watch her around him-- but no problems yet. No reason to sell a dog before your baby gets here and you see something weird. Otherwise, enjoy, they will be great friends!

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A.R.

answers from Denver on

There is absolutely no problem with having a dog around your newborn. It is a good idea to put together all your baby stuff (crib, highchair etc) before the baby arrives so he can get used to it and also having baby smelling things, like a blanket with a little baby powder, around the house ahead of time limits the amount of change he will go through when the baby arrives. Another thing is to make sure that you give you puppy plenty of attention while the baby is awake (as much as you can anyway)so he doesn't associate attention with the baby not being around. It is so great that you are so dedicated to doing the best for your baby! Pets can realy enrich the lives of children! Good Luck!

A.

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N.I.

answers from Daytona Beach on

HI M.,
My son is almost 9 months! wuppie! Anyhow, When I was pregnant I had 2 dogs at the time, a rat terrier (4 years)(Howie) and a german sheaperd (1year old, Chewy). THey were my love and world. When Alex was born the first weeks they were allowed to come in the room, hold by me or my hubby and smelled the baby, only by a short period of time a day. But either my hubby and I spended time with them, while the other handled the baby. But for me it was really hard handling the 2 of them,so luckly my mom took HOwie since he was the more attention seeker of both of them. In the meantime w/Chewy we let him smelled him and watch him, never to leave him alone w/Alex. And believe me any bad looks from the dog we would talk to him hard. But thank god to this day, he respect the baby, and kisses us and the baby. And the baby lovesssss him! I think he prefers the dog better than us! THere have been times that the dog doesn't want to be near him and grab him and talk to him, and eventually he comes around....but always watch the baby w/him, sometimes u never know how a dog might react and sometimes children are the ones that bother the animals..Good luck and if u ever need help please don't hesitate to write.
Noelia G.

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S.S.

answers from Miami on

My daughter is now 2 months old. We have an 8 year old Boxer. He is wonderful with her! He has never been around kids before and he seems to enjoy her. We don't have any air purifiers or anything else special. I have heard that infants who are around dogs have alot less alergies. I highly recommend keeping your dog!!

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M.

answers from Boca Raton on

M.,Dogs are a wonderful learning tool for children.First of all I have had a dog all my life.They are the best thing I can remember.Growing up with dogs was fun and when I got a little older I had a best friend with unconditional love.DO NOT GIVE YOUR PUPPY AWAY!

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R.S.

answers from Jacksonville on

I see nothing wrong with having a puppy and a newborn. I personally have two dogs and an 8 week old. They are absolutely wonderful around the baby and quite protective when people come over to see the baby. Before the baby and I came home from the hospital, my husband brought home a blanket the first night and an outfit the second so the dogs could get used to his smell. I suggest doing that so your maltese will get used to him/her before they get home. But, really nothing wrong with dogs and newborns cohabitating coming from someone who has done it.

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D.N.

answers from Tampa on

We have 5 dogs and our son is 16 1/2 months old. He is very very healthy, having a dog is absolutely fine around newborns. Our son has actually slept in our bed since the day he was born and 2 of our little dogs do to. We are one happy big family! Our son loves our dogs and i think it is great for him to grow up around animals. Not only are we in the same room, we are in the same bed!! People I am sure think we are crazy but it works for us and our son. We are big time dog people and want our son to be too, and to learn to respect and care for animals as well as people. I think kids miss out when they aren't raied with any animals in the house. Hope this helps, let me know if I can give you any more info!!

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J.H.

answers from Punta Gorda on

I have a 15 month old son and 3 large dogs (lab, border collie, and german shepard/golden mix). All of whom my son loves dearly. He runs up to them and gives them hugs as soon as he sees them. However, they are never allowed alone in a room with my son just because you never know. If any one of them did anything to pose a threat, we would sell them. But in 15 months nothing has gone wrong, the dogs just sit there and take the hugs ha ha. Only problem is you have to vaccuum and dust once or twice a day. But it does teach your child how to get along with animals, I feel its a good life lesson.

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K.

answers from Tampa on

As with the other advice, as long as you adjust the dog to the baby there should be no problems. The biggest problem would be if now you spend a lot of time with the puppy and all of a sudden stop and spend time with the baby. The puppy may get jelious. Just be aware of the puppy around the baby. You shouldn't leave them together unattended. Enjoy both your puppy and baby as much as you can. I know that I did with both of my girls.

K.

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S.C.

answers from Pensacola on

OMGOSH! get rid of the dog because you are going to have a baby! That's crazy!!! When my son was born we had a yorkie and she was five. They grew up to be best buds! just be careful and cautious. You should check with your vet for suggestions. I once read where you should gently tug or pull on the puppies ears and then offer a treat. Then pull on their tail and offer a treat. You would continue to do this pulling of various parts off and on to help prepare the puppy for the chance encounter that the baby might one day pull on the dog. This way the dog will be use to it. Again please check with a trainer or your vet. Once your baby is in a high chair dropping food everywhere your dog is going to love them!!! All dogs love a food source! Best wishes to you, the baby and puppy!

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A.M.

answers from Lakeland on

I would be one of those people whothink kids and animals go together. I have 2 dogs & 10 cats. A 20 month old and am 8.5 months pregnant. I keep the pets out of my daughters room, but every where else in the house they are free to roam. My youngest dog I got when I was pregnant the first time. I wanted a dog for my daughter to grow up with. Let me tell you they are the best of friends- everywhere she goes he is right behind her. It looks very silly since he is 103 pounds. She climbs on the animals and they do not vare. So I think its great you kept your dog. Only you know how your dog truley acts. In the end it will have to be you who makes the choice.

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E.L.

answers from Miami on

Please, whoever is telling you to sell your dog is crazy. You can't just get rid of a pet b/c you're having a baby. I got my maltese puppy when I was 6 weeks preg. My baby is 4 months old and we've never had a problem. You just have to introduce them slowly. My dog is great around the baby and in the beginning he'd try to lick the baby's feet but you just tell him no. Now he sits next to him while we do tummy time and watches. he's never been aggrssive, but don't leave the baby on the floor by himself w/ the dog. Just use your common sense. If the dog nips at the baby that's a different story. But give him a chance. Growing up with pets is a wonderful thing. Just make sure in the first few weeks you don't let the dog touch the baby. Get him groomed right before you have the baby too. You'll be fine.

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L.G.

answers from Tampa on

I have a chihuahua, and had some of the same concerns when I was pregnant, but everything has been fine. You will always need to keep an eye out, and teach your baby "gentle touch", and not to go near the dogs food, but I think it's a positive thing to grow up with a pet. And regarding allergies and such, studies have shown that your child will have LESS allergies than kids with no pets, because her immune system will adapt to the dander and hair.

Also, I grew up around Maltese, my family bred them. I'm the oldest of 8 and none of us were ever bitten by our dogs. So don't feel bad or guilty about keeping your dog!

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J.J.

answers from Lakeland on

I found this site when I was trying to decide if I should keep my dog. http://www.wonderpuppy.net/canwehelp/ I ended up having to give mine away because he was too protective of me and kept biting at my neice. I did not want something to happen after the baby was born and have to make that kind of decision, so I found a good home for him. If he had not been aggressive towards babies I would have kept him. My daughter now loves all furry animals. we just got 2 ferrets and they all love each other and play well. I hope this helps, good luck
J.

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C.K.

answers from Naples on

No it is not really awful to have a puppy and a newborn. I think its actually a really good thing to have your child grow up with a pet. I would just make sure that the dog doesn't get in the crib or bassinet with the baby. I think that as long as you keep an eye on the two together than it will be absolutely fine.

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C.H.

answers from Tallahassee on

dont worry about the pets!!!! I grew up with dogs and cats (even as a newborn) and now I have a chihuahua and a cat with my baby!!!! the air filters are a good idea, I did the same!!! make sure when you give birth you tell the doctors you have pets so they can give you a piece of clothing with the baby smell. When you get home, slowly introduce the piece of clothing to your pet so he/she can get used to the smell!!!! you can certainly have your cake and eat it too in this situation. I did it and millions of people do it too!!!! Please keep loving your pet as much as you do!!!!
Hope this helps

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A.A.

answers from Saginaw on

I have raised 2 children and have 3 grandchildren . All the time we have had pets in the home. he only thing I ever worried about was my cats. Cats will go up to babys face and clean off the milk and sufficate them . So cats were a worry to me. They say to also bring home a diaper that the newborn has soiled to allow the animal to get used to the smells of the newborn too.
Grampa Jack now raising a 2 year and 6 month old.

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C.P.

answers from Tallahassee on

Hi, I have a cat and he is just fine with my 3 1/2 month old. My opinon is that when you are still inthe hospital with your baby have your husband or family member go to the house and let the dog smell something of the baby's. If the dog can get use to that smell then you really shouldnt have anything to worry about. My cat loves my baby boy. at first the cat didnt want to have anything to do with him now he doesnt care at all. we have had no problems with the cat at all.

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T.S.

answers from Orlando on

Just tell "them" that Jesus was born in a manger, and for millions of years animals have co-existed with people. If the dog becomes agressive, get rid of it, immediately! Use common sense and TRUST YOUR MATERNAL INSTINCTS!!!
When that baby is born, you will be it's protector. Until it's immune system builds up, keep it away from people (malls, crowds)and expose it slowly to the dog. Make everyone wash their hands, and stay away if they are sick.
Good luck, M. and God bless your little family.

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L.R.

answers from Orlando on

M.,
When I was pregnant with my first child, I had(and still Have) a Toy poodle. Someone told me that I needed to train him if not he would get jealous.
So I bought a doll and I recorded the sound of a baby cry. I would hold the doll in my arms and play the baby cry recording. It took some time for my dog to get used to it but he finally did. When I had the baby, and she would cry, the dog would run to her room and push the door open and run to our room and bark so we could wake up. He never hurt the baby and was never jealous around her or my other 2 children I had afterwards. As long as you keep everything clean and steralize the babies things you should be ok.
hope this helps. God Bless
L.

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A.M.

answers from Tampa on

I have 2 shitz tzu's that were my first babies and there was NO way I was getting rid of them and no one ever suggested it to me either - UNLESS they absolutely did not like the baby. We started introducing them to the baby's things before he came home and let him smell a blanket he was using in the hospital. They sniffed it and were courious, then went on their way... Now we have 2 kids and they're all fine. It really has to depend on the dog too. You should watch the dog closely in the beginning. The bad thing they like to do is pull on the dogs hairs and tails, so we had to teach them not to do that because then it would of course torment the dogs and they have snapped at them, but only after they kept on and on - and we say stop stop stop!! If that continuted to happen and the kids wouldn't leave the dogs alone, we would put the dogs up in another room for awhile. Like I said - it depends on the dogs, so watch your dog really really closely. Our friends have a small mixed dog that does not like small kids and will growl and become agressive so they make sure he stays in his room when we visit.
A.

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S.S.

answers from Daytona Beach on

As all the other mothers have said, pets and newborns are fine. I tried the doll thing, because I have a 50# nervous-type Aussie/Blue Tick mix, but she just smelled it, and knew it wasn't a real baby, then ignored it. We also have an obnoxious cat (the booger, love him to death, but he is a pain in the rear sometimes). When we first brought our daughter home, our dog, who I expected to be jealous, was actually scared of the baby! Every time the baby cried, the dog tucked tail and ran for her bed, LOL. The cat now, from whom I didn't expect any problems, was extremely jealous, and actually tried to bite the baby's head several times. Needless to say, I let him know that was NOT acceptable right away, and he knows the limits now. He's learned that during the day, I'm busy with the baby, but the second I lay her down at night, he's all over me wanting his share of mommy's attention. Now, my daughter is 9mos and the dog loves her to death, kisses her all the time, and the cat plays with her, but has learned not to bite her. Whenever I feed the baby, the dog eats her food. If I lay the baby down for a nap, the dog heads for her bed; it's too cute! :) I did want to add something that I didn't see. The Humane Society endorses a CD of baby noises called "Preparing Fido" that will help you get your puppy used to the noises the baby will make. I didn't get it, but I wish I had, might have helped Ghirardelli (the dog) feel more comfortable when we first brought Katie home. Best of Luck!

http://preparingfido.com/

Oh yeah, and like a few of the moms said - having pets actually helps children build up resistance to them to keep them from being allergic. Here's some back-up on that you can show those doomsday-sayers telling you to get rid of your puppy:

http://www.drgreene.com/21_1662.html
http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2002/08/27/earlyshow/healt...
http://pediatrics.about.com/cs/weeklyquestion/a/091602_as...

And yes, you will vacuume a lot once your baby starts to play on the floor, part of the price of being a pet owner :)

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M.N.

answers from Bloomington on

I was so happy to see so many people telling you that it is fine to have pets with a newborn. When my daughter was born I had (and still have)two large dogs, (both about 80 to 85 pounds)both of my dogs were and are old but I don't think that makes a difference. I also had and have a cat. The specialists and so forth do say that a newborn has less of a chance of developing allergies if they are around pets and animals.

You do have to keep cats away from babies when they are sleeping because a cat can end up laying on the child's face and suffocating it. That is true.

Dogs, I am a firm believer that no dog no matter what size should ever be left unsupervised with a small child that is just a safety issue that any vet will tell you along with any doctor.

Keep you dog and enjoy him. My MIL told me that I would have to get rid of one of my dogs when I had children (the dog did not like her and tried to attack her husband because he was being stupid)that same dog is the absolute best with my daughter and has the patience of a saint.

Congratulations on son soon to be and enjoy the baby and the puppy. They can grow up together and I think that is really cool.

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R.H.

answers from Tampa on

HI M.,
As long as your dog isn't aggressive, keeping it shouldn't be a problem. I read, I believe it was an article on the BabyFit website, that having pets with newborns is actually good as far as allergies are concerned - it helps the baby NOT to develop an allergy to them. And if you're worried about the dog becoming jealous of the baby, wash some of her clothes with whatever detergent you plan to use and keep them aroud the house and near you, let the dog smell them, so it can get used to the baby's sent. My boyfriend and I bought a dog after we found out I was pregnant, and while she doesn't quite have it down to keep her distance from the baby (she's a big dog, and is VERY nosy)we make sure to keep the dog in line when she gets curious about the baby (she mostly just wants to sniff and lick the baby, but she tries to get right in her face, which we don't allow).

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A.G.

answers from Ocala on

Hi! If people are saying to get rid of your dog because of dander, you did the right thing with the air purifier. Most people are of the belief that a dog or cat that has been an "only child" will hurt the baby. The other reason is that you will be too busy to take care of both and give your dog the attention it needs...that being said, I have 3 dogs, and I had 2 when my son was born. I did not give them away, I kept baby's door closed and kept the dogs out. They only got to interact with him when I was holding him. I was afraid they would be jealous of him and hurt him...they actually just spent a lot of time "cleaning" him, and sleeping near him. No harm, No foul. Having a baby with allergies is tough, KG has them, but the dogs didn't make it worse (Dr. said so), Ilove my dogs.
You really don't have to give up your dog to have your baby. Don't let anyone bully you into it and make you feel bad about keeping your dog. Wait and see, be vigillant, if you find that your newborn needs you to get rid of your dog, THAT'S when you need to do it. You may find that it really IS too much to take on with a new baby and a dog. You need to do what's right for you, and not what's right for everyone around you.
Good Luck!
A.

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K.B.

answers from Tampa on

I think you're the mom you make the best decision for your child... however I woudl recommend that before you come home from the hospital you have someone bring home a receiving blanket w/ the baby's smell to make the pupply used to hte smell & more than likely the pupply w/ be perfectly OK w/ the baby & might even be scared of him & timid & shy.... i'm sure if you felt your baby was in harms way u'd give the puppy to a good home... just don't leave the puppy around the baby alone ;-) GOOD LUCK!!!

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E.P.

answers from Jacksonville on

maltese are one of the few hypoallergenic dogs out there, and the earlier the baby is socialized with the puppy, the less likely they are to develop allergies.

Also, it will teach the child respect... if a baby is never around an animal, they can grow to 1)fear and panic or 2) have no fear and go towards an animal wrong. Good job for keeping your dog!

We have a german shepherd mix and a greyhound... both are VERY good with the baby- always have been... but we make sure to pay attention/ love on em when our daughter is asleep.

So basically you have really great advice from the other moms that posted.

Don't worry- you'll be fine

I wouldn't worry

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S.M.

answers from Boca Raton on

You're getting flooded with good advice.

The dogs will most likely be great for the baby. I wouldn't leave them unsupervised until your child is mobile enough to have pretty seriously have tortured your puppy (pullg ears/tail and eaten food) in your presence so that you know how he reacts.

Chances are, though, that your child will be less allergic going forward, be more comfortable around animals and will have a lot of opportunities to be taught responsibility and empathy that would be absent otherwise.

S., Scott, Mattie (3 yrs) Mitch (1 yr) and all sorts of assorted critters.

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D.

answers from Tampa on

Dear M.,

We had two dogs and one cat when our youngest was born. I laid out the rules while she was a baby. No pets in any of our bedrooms. Once my daughter started crawling I would put stuff on the floor for her to play on, i.e., blanket, playpen, etc. Once she was in a walker things got easier.

I beleive there are studies on the internet that state; children are warmer and learn things from being around animals. I just made sure the animals were clean all the time and I vacuumed a lot! Don't listen to people who tell you that you are wrong. My youngest also developed asthma and outgrew it. Now she is five, has no allergies and LOVES her pets. She helps me wash them and walk them and in general it is great!

Plus aren't Maltese dogs non-shedding? Or low shedding? That is even better than ours. Our dogs are 65 pounds each. In other words they are large dogs. If you have a gentle dog that is good with kids how can you go wrong????

D.

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L.B.

answers from Tampa on

Hi M.,
I had an Australian Shepherd/Chow when my daughter was born. My dog was an instant mother to my daughter! She would sit by her playpen and would growl if anybody other than my husband or me would go near her.
Just make sure someone brings home a blanket or something with your babys smell on it and your puppy should be fine. Your puppy already knows about your little one- they are so smart! and she or he will know when you go into labor!

Best of luck with your little one and if I can be of any further assistance, let me know.

Ps My daughter is now 6 and my dog is 12 and she still is very protective of both of us! :)

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M.F.

answers from Jacksonville on

I am 28 weeks pregnant and also have an inside dog that thinks he is a child. There is no reason to keep your newborn from a safe, unaggressive pet. However, no matter what type of dog you have you should NEVER leave it alone with your baby. Not even for a minute. Below is a great book that I ordered from Books A Million and it is only like $9. It is really helpful in providing tips on preparing your dog for your baby. I highly recommend anyone that has a furry baby at home expecting their first human baby to read this book.
Childproofing Your Dog by Brian Kilcommons; Sarah Wilson.

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S.V.

answers from Melbourne on

Hi M.,

I'm going to make this sort and to the point. We have 4 kids and one on the way and we have had German Shepherds from the very beginning. We have never had allergy problems or with the dog accepting our new baby. I think the sooner you get them together the better for them both. Just don't leave them alone together. The puppy could have pure intentions, but wind up hurting a defenseless baby while trying to play. Good luck and congrats!

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R.

answers from Sarasota on

It is completely O.K. to have pets around newborns. It has even been proven that children who are raised with two or more pets are less likely to develope allergies. If the pet is good with children and you can trust that the pet won't physically hurt the baby then there is no reason to get rid of him/her. Good luck!

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C.S.

answers from Jacksonville on

I have a great dane puppy I got for X-mas last year. She is approaching her first birthday and she is a HUGE puppy. I just delivered a baby girl 5 days ago and I have had my concerns. So far so good. Though I would never leave her in the same room alone. I keep like a mesh screen around her crib, carrier, ect...just in case of loose hair, and a slight barrier from my dog and cat curiousisty. Animals are like kids too but they have to know their place. But if my dog poses any doubts shes being sold!

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T.Q.

answers from Orlando on

M.,

My family bought a Maltese mix puppy when I was 12 and my baby brother was two. I've never seen a sweeter, more even-tempered dog. My little brother was more of a threat to her! She's 13-years-old now and we still call her our puppy. As the other mothers say, you should make sure your puppy gets plently of attention so he isn't jealous of the newborn.

It's a joy to see your baby interact with your pet. You'll be glad you kept him when the baby is old enough to be entertained by the puppy. My baby loves to watch our two kitties play. Everyone said cats are trouble and we should get rid of them, but we were extremely careful when he was a newborn. They keep their distance now. The cats were my first babies, so I'm glad they're still around.

The only thing I might be a little concerned about is the barking. There's nothing more frustrating than an unexpected visitor at the door when you finally got your baby to go to sleep. Maltese mixes tend to be yippy and they sometimes make a lot of noise over nothing. So maybe try to make sure he is far away when the baby is sleeping.

Enjoy your new baby...and your puppy!

-T.

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V.

answers from Boca Raton on

It's not that awful to have both as long as you understand the baby should never be left alone with the dog, not even for a second.
Get the puppy used to the baby as soon as you can. I don't have pets around my kids. I will get them one once they are able to care of the puppy.
I personally do not know how much I would trust an animal, but then again, i am not an animal person.
good luck
V.

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F.M.

answers from Sarasota on

as long as you watch the puppy when he is around the baby you should be fine. I don't think that you should have to give up your dog because you're having a baby. Just be cautious to make sure that he doesn't turn aggresive on the baby, try to include him in things with the baby so that he knows he still has a place in your heart and everything should work out. Good Luck !

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B.O.

answers from Ocala on

M. when my son and wife brought their new born home from the hosp. they took off all his cloths layed him on the floor on a pallat and told their huge shepard here is your baby. that bg dog smelled the baby from head to toe and from that day never left his side. they had three children did the same with all of them and that dog was like a mother to those babies. yes keep your dog just watch close right at first to see how it will react to the baby and make sure you let the dog join in when you are playing with the baby. all animals are different i would say keep your dog but be careful right at first untill the dog see,s the baby is there to stay. good luck dear

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H.P.

answers from Jacksonville on

Poop on the people that say you should get rid of your pup!

Babies raised around animals have been repeatedly shown to have fewer allergies. Not to mention, kids like pets.

A suggestion that I can offer: keep the first hat they put on your baby when s/he is born -- the one before he is cleaned up. This will have lots of birth fluids and vernix on it that smell like baby. When you get home, offer the hat to the dog to explore, so you can see the dog's reaction.

Just go slowly and don't leave the two alone together for a while, and you'll be fine.

Good luck,
H.

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S.

answers from Orlando on

I was a first time mom at age 36. At the time my only 'child' was a sheltie mix dog. Because the dog and I were so close, I was afraid of him being jealous of the baby. He was jealous, but he slept under her cradle and crib the entire time, and 'checked' on her when she cried. He would sit in my lap when I breast fed her and I rested the baby on his back. You should watch your dog around the baby and look for signs of agression. As far as the 'sanitary' effect of having the dog around the baby, I believe (as do some experts) that by exposing the child to 'outside' factors can help build a healthy immune system. I don't mean to take the baby out and expose them to as many germs as possible, but they can't be raised in a 'bubble' either. Be sure to save some 'alone' time with your dog so they do not feel left out. This is only my opinion, but my daughter is 9 years old and has been very healthy even though the dog ocassionally licked her in the face!!! Good Luck! S.

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T.O.

answers from Sarasota on

I think agression would be the biggest worry you should have. If you have a fairly docile dog that does/would likely get along with kids, then you should be fine. You've got air purifiers, etc. so you're doing your best to keep allergens down. I wish I could remember the exact source, but I recall a study about 2 years ago that actually confirmed that having a pet or 2 is BEST for a young child because it introduces less harmful forms of allergens and helps children build up antibodies earlier on rather than exposing them later when it will be harder for them to adapt to a pet.
And as a teen mom, I say if a pet and a baby together is the biggest of your worries, you are lucky. Don't let people scare you into giving up your dog. Let this be the first of many challenges you will have as a mom, teen or not. Good luck and best wishes.

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B.A.

answers from Tampa on

I have 2 dogs and I haven't had a single problem with them interacting with my baby (6mos old). I would wait and see what happens once the baby gets here. If baby has an allergy or the puppy is mean to the baby you will want to rethink the situation. But until then, there is no reason to get rid of the puppy.

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K.M.

answers from Tampa on

M.,

I think it depends on the pet. We had 2 cats and a dog when my daughter was born. I got rid of the cats. They were disgusting vile animals. Our dog on the other hand was almost 3 when she was born. And although he was my baby beforehand, there was absolutely no jealousy. And now he is her "yellow dog". And she will argue with you about it if you say otherwise!
Our dog is a mixed breed aof yellow lab, golden retirever and chow. He has the sweetest disposition and I trust him with my daughter's life.
So tell those people to mind their own business. Unless you see aggressive behavior or don't trust your dog, you never know how they are going to act around a newborn. Be on the cautious side, but I wouldn't get rid of the pet just becuase people are criticizing you.

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L.S.

answers from Tampa on

I have a maltese and a 7 month old. The maltese has been around for 13 years and is NOT good with kids. He even growls at our cocker spaniel. Neither dog pays much attention to the baby but I NEVER leave the two alone together. NO DOG, I DON'T CARE HOW TAME, SHOULD EVER BE LEFT UNSUPERVISED WITH A CHILD OF ANY AGE. NEVER. I'm not trained with animals, but why take the chance? It only takes a second...

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H.Y.

answers from Tampa on

People have dogs around newborns all the time! You shouldnt let the dog be all over the baby, but in the same room is fine. You should definately get the dog used to the crip & the babys things so that the dog doesnt get violent when you bring the baby home. You may also want to get a babydoll & play w/it like its real so that the dog gets used to you giving you attention to something else.

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M.S.

answers from Fort Myers on

I think that it will be okay to keep your puppy. from what i hear it is worse to have a cat around a newborn then it is a dog. i think that you did a good job with getting the purifiers. dont worry you will do fine and good luck to you.

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H.S.

answers from Tampa on

M.,

I had 2 maltese dogs (age 5 & 2)when I had my son in March. They have never been a problem!! He is now 6 months old and they have never snipped at him for grabbing their hair.
When we brought our son home we had the dogs meet us outside. That way they weren't on "their" territory inside. They both just sniffed him and one gave him a lick on the face. It was adorable! Things have been great since... good luck

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