Some Adjustments Need to Be Made Taking Care of Your Baby When You Have Pets

Pets can be messy, as children can. They are very similar in the fact they put their mouths on everything and do not pick up after themselves.

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You also run into the problem that they are unaware of boundaries, and can create problems when they only want to be loving. When you have pets in your house, there are some adjustments you will need to make in your house to keep your baby healthy as well. Quite simply, pets do add some complexity to your parenting. This doesn’t mean that the joys of owning pets is outweighed, simply that more consideration needs to be taken towards parenting when you also have pets. The following are five ways that parenting changes when you add a child to a pet filled home.

1 - Extra Sanitation 

This is a task that sounds easier than done, but it is very important. Your baby will be in your arms and on the ground much of the first year of their life. If something gets into their hands, it is likely to go straight to their mouth. As your child ages, you will struggle to make sure they wash their hands. However, they are very good at mimicking behavior they see from their parents. Therefore, here are things you can do to keep your house as sanitary as possible for your kids.

  1. Wash hands after petting, feeding, or cleaning your pets. You will want to wash your hands and help your child wash theirs to ensure proper hand washing habits.
  2. Feed animals in a room separate from family areas. This will prevent your child from trying to eat their food.
  3. Wear your child or keep the child away from food prep and litter box areas. You will want to make sure there is no risk for your child to be exposed to diseases pets carry and transmit through droppings.

2 - Use Baby Furniture

When you do not have pets, it is common to change a diaper or let a child lay wherever you want. As long as you keep an eye on them, they are not at risk. However, this is not a good idea when you have pets. You will want to make sure you keep your pet and baby safe, so make sure you use changing tables and diaper pails when changing diapers. Your baby will also be safer when he/she sleeps if there is designated furniture where your pet is not allowed to go. It is a small but real suffocation risk if your pet sleeps in the same space as your child. Finally, use baby gates to keep pets out of areas they are not to be in, and keep children in the areas you have made safe for them.

3 - Separate Play Times

When your home is sharing space between babies and pets, you will need to make sure you have separate playtimes. Dogs can get rough when playing, and children often do not understand body language. Your pets need to be given a separate playtime when your child is not present. This will be an adjustment because they are used to having the entire house and you to themselves. Therefore, make sure you start preparing them before your baby enters your world. Similarly, children will need to have their own playtime with you when you can keep them in a safe environment.

4 - Teach Pet Manners

Your children will watch everything you do. It is important to teach pet manners, even if your child is still an infant. Make sure that you always keep your interactions with your pet in your mind. You want your child to learn not to yell, harass, or overwhelm your furry family member.

5 - Never Leave Child Unsupervised

While parenting infants always require supervision, it is more so when you have a pet. When you set up your nursery, install baby monitors, and motion sensor alarms. This will let you know if your pet ever enters the room when you are not there. It is a good idea to have one parent care for your child in the nursery while the other family member cares for the pet to teach them that space is not for them. Despite how much training your pet has had, it only takes a split second for something to happen.

Having pets is known for creating a healthier environment for mental health. However, you will need to make sure you adjust how you care for your baby to make sure everyone stays safe. With these five steps, you will create a home that allows both your child and your pet to cohabitate safely.

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