How to Safely Introduce Your Cat to Your New Baby

How to Safely Introduce Your Cat to Your New Baby

Bringing a newborn baby home is a magical time for your family. With all the excitement, make sure you include your pet in welcoming your little one. Otherwise, you may have a sad, stressed, and potentially mischievous furry friend on your hands. Taking the time for proper introductions will pave the way for beautiful friendships and happy, stress-free times!

Introductions Matter

Your cat was there first. This new tiny human encroaching on your cat’s space smells strange, sounds odd, and moves erratically, which can aggravate your feline friend. The defenses may come on, causing unwelcome cat behavior.

Prepare, Prepare, Prepare

Cats are creatures of habits and are sensitive to changes in your home. Start preparing the nursery months before your baby is due and make gradual changes. Make sure you allow your cat to investigate new furniture or items. You may want to keep the nursery door shut while you’re not there to supervise, but give your cat a chance to tour the new space so it doesn’t feel left out.

Establish ground rules early on and train your cat not to jump onto the baby’s crib or changing table. Cats tend to dislike sticky surfaces, so a double-sided adhesive tape should do the trick if you need a way to discourage jumping onto your little one’s furniture. 

Prepare your cat for those new baby smells that will be entering your lives. Rub baby lotion or powder on your hands to build positive associations with the scents. Try to familiarize your kitty with baby sounds, such as crying, cooing, or giggling, by playing recordings of these baby noises and raising the volume a little now and then. Don’t forget to introduce your cat to those sound-making toys that will soon be a part of your lives.

Time for Baby to Come Home

After arriving home with your new little one, take a moment to greet your cat in a quiet room to provide reassurance that all is well. After a few moments of undivided attention, it’s time to introduce your new baby. Start by letting your cat investigate an item that smells like your newcomer, such as a receiving blanket or article of clothing.

Pay a lot of attention and shower your cat with praise when the baby is in the room. Naptime is a great time to give your kitty a little extra one-on-one attention. Remind your family members to spend time with your furry companion.

Make sure to supervise interactions between your cat and baby. Your furry friend will soon realize that your newborn needs gentle treatment and does not pose a threat. With time, your cat will get used to your new family member’s presence, and with patience on your part, those two will become the best of friends!

Need More Tips?

Contact your trusted team at All About Cats Veterinary Hospital in Kirkland, WA, to learn more about making your baby and cat introductions as stress-free as possible. We’re here to support you and your furry friend every step of the way!

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