Wednesday, November 07, 2012

Pets and Babies

Today's post is all about pets and new babies. It can be a huge thing to bring home a new baby when you have had a pet or pets for a while before. The dynamics in the home change. There are so many times when Scott and I laugh and laugh when the girls are being particularly rowdy and Dawson gives us this look like, "Remember how great it was when it was just y'all and me?" Ha!
Dawson is our Bichon Frise. Scott gave him to me as a present before we were married and he truly was my first baby. He has always slept with me and is right by my side at all times.
He was six when we had Harper so I was worried how things might go. I was VERY VERY nervous honestly. Dawson had never been around children much and he seemed to be a little snippy when he was. Even though he's the SWEETEST dog.

When I was pregnant with Harper I spent a lot of time laying around watching TV and Dawson would lay his head on my belly. (and true to Harper form - she would kick him like crazy. We would laugh that she was already showing who was boss. And we were right.)

We did all the things we could that we thought would help. We let him sniff around the nursery. I bought a doll and held it a lot in the last trimester to get him used to the idea that he was going to have to share. We had planned to bring home Harper and let him sniff a blanket she had used first (because this is what we read) before bringing her in.

Things got off course when Harper went in the NICU and Dawson ended up spending about two months in the country at my parent's house. I just knew it would be a disaster but he honestly never paid much attention to Harper. He just went back to laying on the couch. I think it helped that he was older and more mellow. A puppy might have a harder time adjusting or leaving the baby alone.

I was careful to never leave Harper on the floor alone with Dawson. Just because you can never be too careful and at the end of the day - he's an animal. He's my sweet baby - but he's an animal and I've heard scary stories. But he has always been pretty sweet and we have just taught the girls to leave him alone and only pet him gently. They have NEVER tugged at him or tried to pick him up or have been rough with him because that was just not allowed.

At the end of the day - I think Dawson likes his sisters. He seems kind of lonely when they are at school. I thought it was sweet when he would lay by their side when they were babies.

And there may not be as many pictures of Dawson these days but he is still very much loved.

What are your tips for bringing kids home to your "first kids?"

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