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Introducing your dog to your baby

Bringing home a new baby can be a nerve-wracking experience for anyone. Your dog will be faced with a variety of new routines, smells, toys and sounds in the home. Helping your dog adjust to the change before the arrival can help make it easier for everyone once the baby arrives home.

Where to start 

Preparation is key. Getting back to basics and making sure you're reinforcing obedience training before the arrival help make the process a lot easier. 

Check-up time

Before the baby arrives, make sure your dog has had a health check with the vet and is up to date with all their vaccinations. 

Scent introduction 

Before you introduce your dog to your baby, you can start by introducing a blanket or item of clothing with the baby's scent on it. This will familiarise your dog with the scent and help them recognize the scent when they meet the baby. Observe how your dog reacts to the scent and reward the if they react appropriately. 

Safe space

Creating a safe space for both your baby and dog is important. A neutral area in the home may be the best place for the two to meet. You may choose to have your dog on a leash and someone else holding the baby for safety.

Communication is key 

If your dog remains calm and gentle towards the baby, be sure to praise them and reward them for their good behaviour. Praise and recognition will help your dog understand that how they are acting is appropriate. 

Quality time

Now that your baby is home, your dog's daily routine may become disrupted. Remember to set aside daily enrichment, exercise, or bonding time to keep your dog feeling attended.

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