Why my dog is jealous of my baby
Dogs love the routine. They need it to live in peace. Therefore, although it does not happen to all dogs, it is quite common that there are changes in their behavior or mood when there is a major change in their life, such as a move or variations in the family.
Your dog is accustomed to a way of life, some specific care and attention, and why not say it, to being the center of attention! That's why when a baby arrives (and even more so if it's your first child) your dog may feel displaced, because now you have to manage your time in a different way to take care of the baby as well. If no solution is found, this feeling of "abandonment" can increase and develop jealousy in the dog and cause problems for the family.
Keys to know if my dog is jealous of my baby
Dogs are, despite not being able to speak, extremely expressive animals. Anything they feel, you'll know just by observing their behavior a little bit.
Normally, in general terms, when a dog feels that he lacks affection or attention, he expresses it in the following way:
- Lack of appetite
- Apathy or excessive sleep
- Peeing or pooping at home to get attention
- Tachycardia and anxiety in general
When the reason for these feelings is the arrival of a baby, you may also notice that your dog:
- Rejects or barks at the baby
- Touches you or tries to climb on top of you when you hold or suckling your baby
- Trying to take his toys away from him
- Mark territory in the nursery
- In general, has unusual behaviors when you are with the baby to get your attention
If you've observed several of these symptoms, we're sure that yes, your dog is jealous. Don't panic! We'll explain what to do.
Tips to follow if my dog is jealous of my baby
It's inevitable, you're going to have to divide your attentions. But that's the key: split your time and take care of both of them. Your dog is one more in the family! Don't let him feel replaced.
To prevent your dog from perceiving the new baby as a threat that comes to take his place, it is best to "present" them as soon as possible. As soon as the baby comes home, let the dog recognize him, let him smell that stranger who just walked in the door to get to know him. Don't be afraid! It won't do any harm; you'd be surprised how careful dogs are with children. In fact, he'll most likely be fond of you right away and be protective of your new child.
Do not make your baby something forbidden or inaccessible to your dog, this will make him feel even more "special", something you want only for yourself and increase his jealousy.
By taking care of the attention to both of them and letting them relate to each other from the beginning, the dog's jealous behavior will gradually disappear and they will be the best of friends! In fact, as your child grows older, you'll see that they can play and interact more and can't live without each other.
If you see that the situation is overwhelming or that you are doing your best and nothing is improving, consider consulting a professional.
What you should never do is ...
Remember! When the dog came into your house, you promised to take care of him and make him happy all his life. We know that a child is very important, but.... your dog is also part of your family!
Unfortunately, many families abandon their animals when they have babies. In addition to being an unjustified cruelty that your dog will never understand, it has been proven that living with pets is not bad or dangerous for children, but quite the contrary! It enriches both of them a lot, it helps development, they have fun, it encourages good treatment of animals.... That children have pets has lots of benefits.
If you're having a baby and want to prepare your dog, don't miss our article!
A pet is NOT a toy. Don't leave her because you had a baby.