How to prepare your cat for your new baby | Cat-Tholics Club

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How to prepare your cat for your new baby

Some parents might be scared to have their babies near a cat with all its claws and fans.
This might seems obvious but even though we are all cat lovers here – if the cat and your baby don’t get along, your baby comes first.

generally speaking: cats and babies CAN co-exist harmoniously in the same family, but there are still precautions that new or expecting parents can take to help safeguard both newborn baby and already living at home feline.

this article assumes you’ve already have a cat for a while and the baby is new.

Preparing for Your Baby’s Arrival

some cats do not tolerate change well.
these are the cats most likely to be affected by a new baby, so use the entire pregnancy to slowly prepare them.
the idea is to do gradual changes to prevent too much of a change the day the baby arrives home and instead to make a few small changes to ease the cat into the new condition.

Setting the baby’s surroundings and limiting the cat out of these boundaries

Set up nursery furniture as soon as possible, and allow your cat several weeks to investigate before you select surfaces to declare off limits – such as the baby’s room, it’s crib etc.
and yes, you have to set these limits sooner or later.

once you have set the limit and boundaries , you have migrate regular long-time places that belonged to the cat that are now in the “baby territory”.
for example: the cat’s crib, it’s feeding bowl, litter box etc.
do this at least one month before the baby arrives, make the surfaces unwelcoming for the cat.

When it comes to the litter box or the feeding bowl, begin several months ahead of time to move it a few inches a day to its a new location, away from the baby’s surroundings.
for example if the transition of the litter box is made too quickly, the cat may return to soil in his old spot.

examples: cut sheets of cardboard to the size of the furniture surfaces and cover one side with double-sided adhesive/masking tape.
cats tend to avoid sticky surfaces, and by the end of the month should learn to steer clear of these sites.
you can also cover an area with a solid object like a diaper pail or dresser may deter him…

Switching care person

If the pregnant one was the one doing the cat care routines than no less than one or two months before birth is the time to shift these chores to someone else. the spouse perhaps.
cat routines might include feedings, petting, grooming, play sessions and sleep locations.
the idea is to get the cat used to coming to a different person for these in order to free up the time and space for the main person taking care of the baby.
this is done a few months before baby arrival as the cat may need time to adjust to the style and skills of the new caregiver.

When Your Baby is Home

When you first arrive home from the hospital, peacefully greet your cat in a quiet room without interruption.
Once you’ve had a few minutes to reconnect with the cat, let in everyone else – partner, baby, grandparents, baby nurse and other well-wishers.
treat the event in a matter-of-fact manner, and don’t make a big deal of the introduction (even though it’s momentous, of course!).
You want the kitty to understand this is a normal, expected part of his life.

Place a used receiving blanket or piece of infant-wear in a quiet area where the cat can investigate it.

Some say it a good idea to play sounds of baby noises to acclimate your cat to the new sounds she’s about to hear, and even rub baby lotion on your hands before engaging in a pleasant activity with your cat to create positive associations with baby odors.

Introducing the baby to the cat

Don’t force the introduction, but if the cat acts interested, allow him to sniff the baby’s foot, perhaps (with that scented sock).
By allowing your cat to actually look at, smell, and touch that creature that’s so very different, he’ll understand there’s nothing to fear.

Praise the cat when he behaves in a confident, calm manner.
Once the kitty understands that treating the baby as one of the family and in a respectful way is to his advantage, there should be no problem.
Perhaps make a special baby-cat time when you’re feeding your new baby, and have treats to toss to the cat or a laser-beam toy at the same time.
That way, the cat associates great things with the baby’s presence.

It’s important not to leave your eyes from the baby or the cat.
at first sign of hostility from the cat towards your baby, you might spring into to action and separate the two.
it may take a long time for the cat to accept the baby or it might not workout after all, but you have to be their at the process.

Never stop taking precautions

Take no chances and make sure that the crib and other baby sleeping-locations are off-limits to the cat.
A newborn cannot turn over or even move her head at first, so a heat-seeking cat who chooses to cuddle up close to the baby’s face could make it difficult for the child to breathe.
Close the door to the nursery when the baby is napping.
If there is no door, either install a temporary screen door or place a crib tent over the crib to keep the cat out.
These precautions also prevent the cat from urinating in the crib, something she may try if extremely stressed.