Dogs, meet baby

People ask us a lot about how the dogs are doing with the baby and my answer is: surprisingly well. I thought maybe we would have problems with the dogs being too rough, as in jumping up on us while we were holding Harper or trying to climb over her or things like that. Maybe trying to lick her or paw at her, Sadie especially. But other than the first day or two that we had her home, the dogs have been very gentle around her. I don’t think we will have any issues until Harper starts crawling and walking. Once they are on the same level, moving around in each other’s spaces, I think we will probably have to work on the idea of being gentle. But that goes both ways. For every time a dog brushes past Harper while she’s in her jumper (including their tails), she is grabbing at them with her hands in a not-so-gentle fashion. Once she is dropping crumbs everywhere and running around with sticky hands, I’m sure they will become a team.

I am actually more concerned about the dogs’ well-being at this point. Mainly Reggie, because she has such a nervous disposition. When the baby cries a lot, Reggie usually wants to go outside. Sometimes she will stay out there for hours, which she never used to do. I think it’s partly that she likes having a space to call her own — I usually find her contentedly sunbathing — and partly because she is scared that someone crying means someone is upset with her. When Harper gets screamy, I have even found Reggie hiding underneath the stroller, and I have to coax her out.

Now that we have a little more time to devote attention to the dogs, I’m trying to give Reggie more pets and cuddles. I’m not sure she’ll ever get over the crying, but hopefully there will be less of that as Harper gets older. Thankfully, both dogs are pretty patient with kids petting or grabbing at them, so I’m not worried about them becoming agressive. I just hope they can behave when we have a teetering toddler.

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