Today Suzy, The Dog Training Lady, our resident pet trainer, is sharing with us some tips on How to Keep Your Baby and Cat Safe when introducing a new cat or baby to your home. Enjoy!
Whether you are bringing home a cat to your new baby, or you are bringing a new cat to your home that has a baby, here are some keys, and tips to keep your baby and cat safe.
Which would you choose your baby or your cat? Not really a hard choice to make, any parent would choose their child over anything. Sacrifice is after all, a requirement of parenthood. However, what if there is a possibility of having both, babies and cats? For a pet lover, this would be heavenly. Fortunately, this kind of heaven is possible here on earth. Just read the following and you will realize you can have your cat while taking care of your baby safely.
Mixing baby, and cat doubles the responsibility coupled with some risks. You don’t only need to take care of the baby you have to take care of your cat too, to keep everything balanced. Either you are bringing the baby in, or bringing a new cat in, you need to know how to deal with the changes to keep your baby, and cat, safe with each other’s company.
Now we come to the point where you’d have to introduce your baby to the cat. Your cat might feel neglected, and will feel jealous of your baby when you come from the hospital with baby in tow. That is why you need to be vigilant, and do the following to make your cat realize your baby is not a threat.
What you can do is let your cat smell your baby’s items like clothes, pillow, and blanket, even before the baby comes home from the hospital. Make a recording of your baby’s sounds as well, and let your cat hear it. If your cat becomes upset, consult your veterinarian for possible safety issues.
Make sure you set a new schedule for your cat before your baby is born. When your baby arrives, this schedule must be something you think you can keep up.
Have someone else hold your cat when your baby comes home from the hospital. If your cat gets excited to see you, let another person to hold your baby, so you can greet your cat properly. When all the excitement passes, let your cat be free to investigate. Spend the same quality time with your cat once your baby is home. Otherwise, this can cause jealousy from your cat towards the baby, who is now getting lots of attention.
If you don’t have a cat, and want to have one in your home, you really need to think about this carefully especially when you have a baby to care for. If you introduce a cat to your baby at home, make sure you have the following covered.
Don’t force petting your cat if it doesn’t want to. You need to introduce the cat to a new environment too, and must not be traumatized with your baby. Don’t let your baby catch or corner your new cat.
Give your baby space where the cat will not, and cannot invade. You also need to watch out for aggressive signs. See if your cat is nervous, or interested with your baby. As much as possible, spend some time with your cat to prevent any jealousy to develop. Never let your cat, no matter how gentle, be alone with your infant, asleep, awake, crawling on bed or floor or in the carrier.
I have included this video so you can see that cats are more curious than anything else, and you may even get a few laughs. You will also notice that there is always someone around as the introduction is occurring.
Just remember whether you are bringing a new baby in or a new cat into your home, you need to know how to deal with the changes to keep your baby, and cat too, safe with each other’s company.
When you come from the hospital with baby in tow, your cat might feel neglected, and may feel jealous of your baby. What you can do is let your cat smell your baby’s items like clothes, pillow, and blanket even when the baby is still at the hospital. If your cat gets excited to see you, let other people hold your baby, and greet your cat properly. Don’t force petting your cat if it doesn’t want to.
If you have any additional questions on this cats and babies, please contact Rachel and she will get those questions to me.
Suzanne Dean, ABCDT
Cat Lover and Owner Too
I want to thank Suzy for writing another amazing behavior column for us. I also want to let everyone know that she is having a giveaway for 3 months of FREE online dog training! Click here to enter!