If you are on social media, you will easily come across many photos and videos featuring kids, babies and dogs. Both being family members, of course people want to capture special moments between their kids and dogs. The question is.. are they appropriate, or even safe situations for both child/baby and dog? I often come across with these still moments in time and cringe at the positioning. This gave me an idea to run a poll on Instagram story to see what the average person sees when presented with a photo of baby and dog then asked the question "Is this appropriate, true or false?" Then based on the results, we can chat about it here!
Another interesting and different perspective is to consider what the dog is going through on a bigger picture level. Just like the parents, the dog is also going through a major transition period when a newborn comes home. Their sleep schedules are disrupted, their walking routines might be changed, and they now have a new loud and different smelling being in their home getting a lot of attention. Imagine your dog is struggling with these routine changes, new sounds and the like. They are resting or told to lay down and all of the sudden this new creature (the newborn) is placed on top of them. It's might not be so welcomed from your dog...
In this particular photo, the doodle is licking the babies head. Which may lead many people to say "look, the dog is kissing the baby so he must be fine!" Eh.. not quite! Dogs lick for many reasons and they don't all mean affection. Dogs can lick when they are uncomfortable, when they want to explore something, when something is new or simply if they like the way it tastes. It depends on the situation and the dog. It's not good practice to get into assuming all dog licks are that of affection and love!
Stay tuned for the next post which will include more examples of baby/dog photos with explanations!
Ah-ha Moments on Managing Kids & Dogs