Resources For families with dogs and babies!

Friday, March 18, 2011

Siberian Husky and Baby crying together. Cute or not?

There is something about a baby and pooch that screams cute it? We all like to see harmony and new parents especially love to see their baby and dog.."bonding" but this is not a safe option. Bonding of this type is not a safe option!
Newborn cries are alarms and often trigger dogs to react in a way that is not comfortable to parents or safe for a baby. Dogs are animals and a new baby is unfamiliar to that animal. This dog (although well behaved) is still a dog and should not be this close to a newborn in stress. Definitely not like this. The dog in fact is reacting to the stress signal the baby is giving. The howling is not a "sharing" moment but an indicator of stress. Notice when the dog sits up a bit...I am guessing to scratch a bit due to discomfort of the situation and not knowing what to do. This is not safe and the dog is not getting direction on how to handle this.
I realize we all want to believe it is safe and the dog is trying to soothe the baby but as a certified dog behavior consultant who specializes in dog and baby safety.....I am sorry to say that this is not a comfortable or safe idea for either the dog or baby.


BlackhawksRock said...

Some dogs are great with kids. Fortunately for us we have a very tolerant yellow lab and she loves our daughter and is accepting of our daughters playful roughness. Here is a clip of our wonderful dog playing with our daughter. Labs are the best.

Dogs & Storks said...

Your dog and baby are beautiful! I realize it appears that you dog is enjoying this. What would indicate she is not? As a dog behavior consultant I see this dog giving subtle signals indicating discomfort and stress. Sniffing when baby is too closej (avoidance behavior) scratching, yawning, head turning and finally rolling over which is the ultimate PLEASE give me space. Your dog is very tolerant but is that enough? All dogs are tolerant until they get fed up. What is this teaching our daughter about interaction with 4 legged furry friends? I have a 20 month old and I can promise you this is not the type of interaction I consider ok or safe for either. What I encourage is the baby to blow kisses to the dog who is resting, or wave night night but not go to the resting dog. We call the dog over to us and if they choose to come over then we offer one handed petting with supervision. Dogs do well when things are predictable. Toddlers are unpredictable by nature with their actions and behaviors. This makes dogs uneasy. Your dog is whispering HELP and I really hope you will take a moment and read through some other posts to learn about the subtle signals dogs offer. is helpful too. Thanks for posting as many folks could benefit from this video. may I post it?