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Introducing a very much loved dog to a new GD

(21 Posts)
Abuelana Tue 21-May-19 19:41:51

We have a very much loved dog who doesn’t have a bad bone in her body. She’s now nearly 9 and I’m wondering how to introduce her to new GD
Any advice out there ?

Iam64 Tue 21-May-19 20:14:15

Is your dog used to babies Abuelana?

Introduce the smell of your granddaughter well before you bring the baby to the house. Bring an item of clothing or a blanket the baby has used and let your dog sniff it.

You know your dog well, I know my old huge dog well and felt confident that having introduced the scent, she could. meet the baby. Let the baby's parent hold her and allow the dog to sniff around - feet, clothes never near the face. That's enough for today. Keep them separate so the dog can get used to the idea of a baby in the house.

My dogs are now used to babies as we're blessed with 4 under 4 the youngest of whom is 4 months. I'd never leave my dogs unsupervised around any of the children/babies. Scent is key for dogs but even the dogs who don't have a bad bone in their bodies (I have two of them) are dogs so I make sure they don't have any unsupervised access to the young children or babies.
I'm sure it will go well.

sodapop Tue 21-May-19 20:22:13

Iam64 has excellent advice. Don't rush things, allow your dog plenty of time to get used to the new arrival. Never leave babies unattended with dogs however well you think you know your dog. Good luck I'm sure it will be fine.

agnurse Tue 21-May-19 20:42:13

Introduce them slowly. Make sure the baby doesn't make any loud noises or rapid movements around the dog. Make sure the dog has room to get away. Don't allow the baby close up by the dog's head to start with. Above all, never leave a baby unsupervised with the dog. I'm sure your dog is very lovely, but sometimes dogs don't know their own strength. Just as an example, Newfoundlands and St. Bernards tend to be big, goofy things that will run enthusiastically at a small child and knock them over. The injury wasn't intentional, but it is still an injury.

Iam64 Tue 21-May-19 20:49:48

agnurse - do you have any experience of either dogs or babies?
You simply can't " make sure the baby doesn't make any loud noises or rapid movements around the dog".
It's obvious that a Newfoundland or a Saint Bernard could knock a small child over. My big dog knocked an 18 month old toddler over when he walked passed as she enthusiastically wagged her tail. It was unusual for the toddlers and the dogs to be out in the same room. My dogs are usually confined by a child's safety gate to the utility room, off the kitchen when the children are here. The dogs are absolutely part of the family but 3 toddlers and a 4 month old baby just don't provide a relaxed environment for the dogs - or vice Verca.

Abuelana Tue 21-May-19 22:56:10

Dog is not used to babies or children so we will take it very very slowly. Thank you

Iam64 Wed 22-May-19 08:10:10

Best of luck Abuelana, we were in your position 4 years ago and at that time had a 4 year old, reactive dog. I'd done a lot of work with him but he still found life a challenge. If its any reassurance, we took it very slowly, introduced the scent etc and never had any problems with him. By the time the babies were toddlers they were established as higher in the pack order than him, he was used to them and behaved well. We made a lot of use of the dogs being behind the child safety gate, so not shut out but not able to run about whilst the toddlers were there.

TerryM Wed 22-May-19 10:28:40

We have a very beloved older dog as well.
Have to say as we have limited contact we are not trying to build a relationship with the dog and grandson.
I think too stressful on our dog as he likes to jump

rizlett Wed 22-May-19 10:42:08

Play some baby noises through your laptop or mobile - make sure you ignore them so that your dog becomes familiar with some of the sounds but learns from you to ignore them.

oldmom Wed 22-May-19 11:14:06

How do the baby's parents feel about introducing the baby to the dog? Do they want the dog around the baby at all?

Be prepared for boundaries on their part, if the in-law is perhaps not so keen on the dog.

sarahcyn Wed 22-May-19 11:34:26

I give this leaflet to antenatal clients who are dog owners:

ReadyMeals Wed 22-May-19 11:42:12

I'd advise making the first meeting take place in the baby's home rather than the dog's. The dog's psychology is such that they are more likely to be put out and hostile to something foreign in their own home, and more likely to respect and be submissive to the animals and people whose house they are visiting.

Hazeld Wed 22-May-19 12:19:30

When I had my first child I took him to see my in laws who at the time owned a lovely spaniel, very friendly and never a bad bark in his life. I sat down and the dog came for a sniff round which was fine and we all made sure to make a fuss of him so he wouldn't feel left out, then my FIL went to take the baby off me and their very placid and friendly dog went for him, growled and went to bite him. We had never seen him like this before. Our in laws had had him for years and he'd always been so friendly but he obviously didn't want him touching the new arrival and it did take him quite a time to get used to others holding the baby besides me. He never had a problem with that. Very strange.

burnel Wed 22-May-19 13:34:18

Sorry havnt read posts short of time. I have intoduced my 5 dogs to two grand daughters. Before i started i carried a baby doll around in the house get them used to me carrying baby. Had doll on high chair buggy etc. Being higher up can be seen as a dominent position. Then took it very slowly mayb a walk out together. Dogs in different room when kids at mine and allowed through once all settled. Baby crying dogs away. Use common sense and dont trust dogs i love mine but they r animals. Plus its to protect my dogs as well as my lovely grand kids.

vickya Wed 22-May-19 13:55:05

Our two dogs had to be restrained when grandkids arrived as they got very excited but later settled down. The German Shepherd cross used to circle the playground in the park barking at people who wanted to go in when grandson was there if she didn't like the look of them smile. Now only one dog is left. He was a bit outraged when granddaughter , age 4, wanted to play with his teddies. But he didn't say anything.

grandtanteJE65 Wed 22-May-19 14:07:09

Remember to praise the dog when she has been allowed to sniff the baby. When you take her out of the room, give her a couple of dog biscuits or a similar treat.

Dogs can become jealous of the attention a baby gets, but most of them realise that the baby is just that, an infant of the human species that needs to be taken care of. By praising the dog you remind her that you love her too.

If the dog seems unhappy with the situation, take her away and don't force things.

Curlywhirly Wed 22-May-19 17:54:29

Our dog (a gorgeous Labrador retriever) had no experience of small children or babies and used to shy away from any children trying to stroke her. When the dog was introduced to our first grandchild (who was only a few weeks old) she was inquisitive and we let her sniff the baby's hands and feet. We gave the dog lots of praise and never pushed her away (if she tried to sniff the baby's face, we just repositioned the baby, rather than push the dog away). We took great pains to make the dog feel included, (never shut her in another room or behind a baby gate) and gave her treats when the baby visited. That was 4 years ago; we now have two grandchildren and she's so patient with them and has even started sitting next to the eldest grandchild and puts her head on our grandaughter's lap, and goes fast asleep, which is lovely! The dog still paws me when I play on the floor with the grandchildren, (she must feel a little left out) and I always fuss her and tell her how good she is. However, Labradors are known for their gentle nature, and I'm sure it could be more difficult with some other breeds.

Abuelana Sun 26-May-19 21:04:03

Thank you thank you we will take it very slowly with our dog and introduce her slowly to the new arrival.

Tedber Mon 27-May-19 15:20:15

My dog has had to get used to 'lots' of new arrivals in the past 5 years! My advice would be just act 'normal'. If your dog senses you are 'stressed' he may think this new entity is something to be worried about?

We didn't bother introducing as such - one minute they weren't there the next they were and the kids just slotted in.

It is common sense not to leave any dog alone with a new baby (unlike when I was born and apparently my parents' German Shep slept under my cot bahaha - can you imagine?)

Good luck with the new arrival - most dogs are happy to accept newcomers but I think you will know yourself if your particular dog is likely to have issues.

Floradora9 Tue 28-May-19 15:20:12

Just never ever leave them alone together I knew a baby who was savaged by much loved pets.

Framilode Tue 28-May-19 16:55:50

Some years ago when our new grandson first came to the house my daughter placed him on the bed upstairs whilst we all had a cup of coffee. Suddenly we noticed that our small dog was missing. We raced upstairs and found the dog on the bed lying next to the baby, he wasn't harming him just protecting him, which was something he did from then on. The dog adored the child.

However, we were horrified and appalled that we had been so stupid. It could so easily have gone the other way and ended in tragedy.