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Baby Coming?

Getting your Dog

ready for a New Baby

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Dogs & Storks. Helping the k9 baby when expecting
Written by: Jennifer Shryock

Dogs & Storks.
Preparing your k9 baby for your new arrival.

Pregnancy is an amazing time for all family members. There are
many new experiences and emotions that will be shared and
experienced. All too often our canine family members are not
included. Many families believe it best that they re-home their
dog due to the changes and not knowing how to manage it all. Many
families have concerns about safety. It is rare that a dog can
not stay safely in its current home after the arrival of a baby.
There are many proactive steps that can be taken ahead of time to
help things go smoothly. Obedience, leadership as well as
management are all essential to providing a safe and comfortable
environment for all.

It is strongly recommended that you attend an obedience class
regardless of the age of the dog. Obedience encourages bonding,
self control and mental stimulation. Shop around and find a
program that fits your goals and needs. I recommend you start by
gathering information about dog trainers in your area. A helpful
website is The Association of Pet Dog Trainers. (
Here you will obtain much information and will know a bit more of
what to look for in regards to a training and manners program.

There are many wonderful trainers. Take your time and select the
one that listens and understands your family goals.
Leadership is essential to our canine companions. It is important
that your dog knows he can trust you to be the “leader.” When you
bring a dog into your family you become their pack. The leader of
the pack communicates a sense of safety and trust that makes it
clear to the dog that things are under control. It is important
that the dog knows that his leader is capable of handling this
role or the dog may decide to take charge himself. Many times
confusion about leadership roles can lead to undesirable behavior
and sometimes injury.

Leaders: Have control of the resources the dogs need, crave and
enjoy. Asking your dog to sit, down, perform several commands
will help communicate you are the leader. Here are some examples
of ways you can be a leader.

1. Decide when you want to feed your dog, not allowing them to
“control” this by barking, nudging or any other demanding behavior.

2. Having your dog/s sit and wait for a release command before
entering or exiting your home.

3. Having your dog walk close to you allows you to monitor the
environment and keeps your dog close in case of a passer by,
loose dog, running child or any other potential situation.

4. Ignore demanding behavior for your attention such as pawing,
nudging, whining.

5. Keep playtime fun but under control. Your ability to regain
your dogs attention when excited is very important and a great
demonstration of leadership.

6. Demonstrate overall confidence in expectations.

7. After being away, calmly return to the pack without a fuss or
huge greeting celebration.

If you are having issues with your dog you may want to consider
how leadership is represented in your home. This combined with
obedience can lead to a successful and harmonious relationship.
If you feel that you may be having issues regarding leadership in
your home, I suggest you contact a canine behavior consultant or
trainer prior to the arrival of your baby. If you have
experienced aggressive behavior with your dog please consult your
vet. You may need to seek the help of a behaviorist in your area.
Your vet can help guide you in the right direction. Many dogs
respond extremely well with obedience and leadership well
established. There may still be times however that management is
necessary for all.

Management may still be necessary with your dog. There will be
many visitors and lots of commotion during the time of the baby’s
birth. If you have a dog that is fearful of guests and you have
people over, you may choose to “manage” the situation and remove
the dog to a quiet secure space where he feels safe. Setting our
dogs up for success is key. Allowing them to practice a negative
behavior is reinforcing that behavior. There are times that
crating and removing the dog may be temporarily a better solution
instead of risking a negative consequence or a chance to practice
unwanted behavior. If you choose to crate the dog please keep in
mind that this is not punishment. It is allowing a safe place for
your dog. Reinforce this by providing a special treat for them
each time they are in their crate. Stuffing a toy with peanut
butter and kibble is one idea. There are many ways to make this a
positive and welcoming den for your dog.

It has been our experience that with leadership, obedience and
management, canine family members welcome the arrival of a baby
with wagging tails! After all, their leaders are happy so they
should be too! Congratulations and enjoy!

Family Paws encourages you to never leave an infant or child
unsupervised with a dog or puppy! Even good dogs have tolerance
limits. Expecting a child and dog to “work it out” is not
realistic and can be extremely dangerous! Always be aware of the
interaction between your child and any dog. Any dog no matter
their breed, color, size, age and past experiences can lead to an
amazingly great outcome or potentially dangerous outcome. Your
involvement and instincts play an important role!

For More information please visit  to learn more!

Start your Puppy out the Right Way!

Do you really believe that feeding your puppy a cheap supermarket
food that contains fillers and meat residue from dead, dying, and
diseased animals is really going to help your puppy develop strong
bones, teeth and muscular tissue that will be the strongest possible
in fighting off diseases?

Degenerative type diseases happen because of life style choices.

What your puppy eats is your choice alone.

However, if you want to give your new puppy the best chance at
avoiding those horrible degenerative diseases, you can do so by
giving your puppy the best possible start in life you can.

Find out more about how you can do the Right Thing for your
puppy by selecting the link below

My Puppy's Better than your Puppy!

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