As an expecting parent, you’re likely doing all you can to prepare your home and family for the arrival of your new baby. Although babies and cats often get along just fine, there are some important precautions to take when introducing your infant to the family pet. Here’s some helpful advice to make the entrance of your newborn go smoothly:
Keep Your Cat Indoors
Babies are much more susceptible to germs than grown children and adults, so it’s very important that you keep the good bacteria in and the bad bacteria out. If you have a cat that spends time both indoors and outdoors, it’s beneficial to keep them inside (and clean) in the days or weeks leading up to your baby’s arrival. There are all kinds of germs that your cat can pick up when they are wandering outside, and if any harmful bacteria gets into your home, it can easily be spread to your infant.
Prepare Your Cat for Changes
If your cat is used to lots of attention or is startled by loud noises, a new baby might be a big change for them. To better prepare them for everything that will change when you bring your infant home, you can:
- Play baby noises for them so that they can get used to the new sounds that will be present in your home.
- Set up the nursery and allow your cat to get familiar with the room while teaching them which areas are off-limits to pets.
- If the litterbox will be moved to a different location (further from where the baby will sleep/eat/play) once the baby arrives, move the box a few inches each day from its current location to the new one.
Make the Introduction Gradual
If your cat’s routines change too quickly, they can undergo behavioral and personality changes that are unfavorable to your family. Before introducing your new family member to your pet, allow your cat investigate new baby smells by offering a receiving blanket or piece of your infant’s clothing for them to smell and become familiar with.
Don’t Forget to Spend Quality Time with Your Cat
A newborn baby naturally requires more attention than your pet, but it’s important to remember that your cat is a part of your family too and needs attention in order for them to stay happy and healthy. When the baby is napping, use some of the spare time to curl up with your cat. Ensure they get treats from time to time and try to stay on top of their feeding schedules so they don’t feel neglected or ignored.
Schedule a Wellness Checkup for Your Cat
Prior to your baby’s arrival, bring your furry friend to see the professional veterinary care specialists at Catonsville Cat Clinic. We will make sure your cat is up to date on shots and in healthy condition to meet your new family member. We are also here to give helpful advice on how to ensure a smooth transition for your cat once the baby arrives. Give us a call today!