Borders and Babies
Many people get their Border Terrier before they have children.
Once they decide to have children they aren't sure how the dog will react to the new baby and in extreme cases some re-home their dog.
If you are planning on introducing children to the household we have a few tips to make the transition as smooth as possible for all involved.
Border Terriers do like their routines.
Think about how your and your dogs daily routine will change in the future and slowly introduce these changes to allow your dog to get used to them gradually.
Your dog will still need plenty of exercise as a bored and frustrated dog can become naughty, initially you may want to employ a dog walker a few times a week to ensure you dog is kept healthy and happy.
Brush up on your dogs recall and training in general and if they don't know a command such as 'wait' or 'stop' introduce this now and continue to build upon the good behaviours your dog already has throughout the pregnancy.
If you dog pulls on the lead while out walking this should also be worked on and trained out to ensure you feel safe holding a lead and pushing a pram.
Have you visited the vets recently, are all your dogs vaccinations, boosters and flea and tick preventions up to date?
Slowly introduce baby noises like crying into the background. You can buy 'music' which is essentially the sounds of babies crying, use this by gradually playing the sounds for short periods, gradually playing the sounds for longer and at a higher volume.
As these noises are playing out praise your dog as they become more and more used to it, play with them, give them attention and reassure them that this high pitch noises are nothing to be scared of.
If you can get to the stage where your dog will sleep to theses sounds too this should mean the new baby noises wont affect your dog at all.
As you buy new furniture, decorate etc ready for the new arrival introduce them to your dog too.
Let them sniff in the nursery as it changes from say a spare room to a room of lots of activity and new and scary sights, sounds and smells.
Bring the playpen, highchair and pram into the house before the baby arrives, you could even rub your dogs bed on the frames etc to make them smell familiar.
You could even start to take the pram and your dog for a walk before the baby arrives to get you all used to where your dog will walk as you are pushing the pram and holding the lead.
There will be lots of new toys around the house, get these out before the baby arrives and teach your dog which are their toys and which are not.
Play with your dog with their toys, make their toys interesting and exciting, get your dog to ignore the baby toys and the sounds they make.
Bringing a new baby home and introducing them to your dog can be a worrying time. Try not to let your dog pick up on your anxieties and stay as calm as possible.
If some clothing worn by the baby in the hospital before it is brought home can be given to your dog to smell before the baby enters the house this will help too.
Let your dog sniff the baby and make sure you give your dog as much attention as the baby to make sure they don't feel excluded.
A comfy bed in a separate room away from all the noise and excitement will also be a good idea, your border, as well as you, is going to be over tired and over excited with all the people visiting the house to see the new arrival and may want somewhere quiet and peaceful to retreat to when it all becomes a little too much.
Border Terriers are generally great with children and know to be gentle with little people, as your child grows you will also have to teach them not to hit, pull and climb on your dog and teach them how to stroke them carefully.
No matter how well your children and dog get along we would never recommend leaving children and dogs alone for even the shortest of times.