If you’re expecting a baby, congratulations are in order! As you already know, it’s an exciting time in your life, and there’s so much to prepare for and think about before that memorable day (or night) when your offspring decides to make an appearance into the world!
One thing that some parents-to-be think about is the dynamic of their homes if they have a pet cat. As with most animals, cats can get confused if big changes are being made in their homes and they suddenly see a new human that spends most of their time in the same abode as them!
Unfortunately, some parents worry too much about what might happen, and so they decide to put their feline friends up for adoption before the arrival of their newborn babies. While that’s something you could do, it’s an extreme reaction! The good news is that cats and kids DO get along okay – as long as you do some preparation work beforehand. Here are some things all soon-to-be parents should know about babies and cats:
Your home should be clean at all times
The last thing you want to do is introduce germs and bacteria to your newborn baby and make them ill at such a vulnerable time in their lives. As much as we don’t like to admit it, cats can make our homes dirty – especially when they bring fleas back home with them!
Luckily you can reduce the risk of that happening by keeping your home clean, including the area where your cat sleeps at night. And if your feline friend does have fleas, use some flea and tick drops on them to sort the problem out.
You must get your cat used to the idea of a new human
One of the things on your to-do list will be to prepare a nursery room for your new offspring. Even though you may wish to get the work done as quickly as possible, it’s important to do it gradually from your cat’s point of view.
Taking such an approach will ease your cat into the idea that changes are afoot at home, and they can familiarize themselves with the new baby equipment such as cots and changing stations.
Give your cat some space
Once the new arrival comes home, your cat will most likely want to mark out his or her territory in your home.
What you can do is create an area of your home where your feline friend can spend their time alone without getting disturbed by the baby or anyone else for that matter.
Give your cat some toys to play with in “their” room or area, and include things like scratching posts and perches.
Ban your cat from the nursery
It’s critical that you prevent your cat from entering the room where your baby will be sleeping. First of all, it ensures you maintain a clean environment for your newborn. And, secondly, the cat won’t try to sleep next to your baby.
Supervise your cat and baby when they are together
One final thing to bear in mind is that babies should NEVER be left alone with cats under any circumstances! Whenever your cat wanders into the same room as your baby, be sure to keep a close eye on things.