|Lily as a baby.|
I want to share my experience of what happens to the family dog after a baby comes into the picture. So many dogs and other pets end up at shelters because their owners don't find them compatible with the new family lifestyle.
Will the Dog be Forgotten?
My answer to this question is no. Shiner was my first child and yes I treated her like one. She was the first dog I parented as an adult. So what happened with Shiner after my daughter was born? Did I throw her out in the yard and forget to feed her? Of course not!
She did become less of a priority, however. Caring for a newborn baby is no easy task and can be stressful work. Housework and a good night's sleep all become less important than the new baby. It's not that the dog will be forgotten, but they may get less attention than they had in the past - at first, anyways. It's true - I'll admit it.
It's important to not completely forget about your dog though! You'll want to make sure your child and dog have a healthy relationship with each other. Out of everyone in the family, Shiner seems most attached to me. I can even see some jealousy from her over the kids. Overall, she does really well with them.
Don't Be Selfish!
While getting rid of your dog may be the easy way out of an inconvenient situation when you don't feel like caring for them anymore, I don't believe it is the best decision. Things do get easier as the new baby grows. Yes, I realize that there are extreme situations but in most cases I don't believe there is a reason to get rid of your dog just because you had a baby.
Yes, your dog will wake your baby up from a nap more than likely. Yes, the dog will probably lick the baby's face. Yes, your baby will probably eat dog food at least once in their lifetime. And yes, it's likely they will also grow up to be best friends with each other.
|Shiner and Lily.|
|Violet sleeping on top of Shiner.|
I wanted to rant about this a little bit because I saw a post from a personal acquaintance on Facebook that had just had a baby. She had also recently adopted a dog before the baby. She was posting something about how she wished they could get rid of said dog because instead of going out somewhere with her husband, she had to stay home and watch the dog. Don't be selfish!
All in all, I just wanted to say that things will change with your relationship with your dog after a new baby arrives in the house. Of course, they won't be the center of attention anymore and for some dogs that can be difficult to adjust to. But dogs are loyal creatures and will stand by you through thick and thin. Unless the situation is truly extreme, I still believe it is possible to find it in your heart to keep your dog - your first baby.