Wednesday, 3 August 2016

What Comes First, Dog Or Baby?

When you move in together or get married, there are so many things you want to do. You have plans for the house. You want to start thinking about raising a family. And you’ve always wanted a dog, just like your pet from home. But which do you do first? Should you go ahead and get a dog straight away? Or, should you wait first, until your family is established? There are no right or wrong answers here, and people will have different experiences. But there are several things you need to take into consideration before reaching a decision.

Getting A Dog First May Ease You In

If you don’t want to start a family straight away, you may decide to get a dog first. Dogs take a lot of care and attention. It will ease you into the concept of having another being in the house. Dogs need feeding several times a day. Though granted, babies need feeding more. They need regular exercise, and they need love. Depending on the breed of dog you choose, they also get through quite a lot of food. And it certainly adds to your household expenses.

There are also vet fees to add to the mix. Like humans, dogs get ill and need procedures and medication. A sudden and unexpected illness can add stress to your budget. It’s worth reading up on dog breeds and the type of conditions that are sometimes associated with them. For example, some dogs may struggle with lethargy and may be reluctant to exercise. Fortunately, there is medication such as Vivitonin for dogs to fix this. But would you be able to deal with a sick dog while nursing an infant?

On the other hand, getting a dog first would allow them time to fit in with your family. And it would allow you to get to know their personality and needs. It also allows you time to housetrain them.

Choosing A Dog Together As A Family

Many children love pets. So some families prefer to put off getting a dog until their kids are old enough to appreciate them. They prefer to bring them in on the decision to get a pet and allow them to help choose. The advantage of this is that they can experience the dog from being a puppy and can learn how to take care of them.

Babies will take over your life and change it forever. Do you have time to take care of a dog when you have a newborn in the house? Can you provide it with the love and attention it needs?


One question that many people have is whether it’s safe to have a dog around a baby. Caution is always advisable. Many pets like being around young children. In the early stages, it may be easier to separate your dog from your child. However, this will become increasingly difficult as your baby begins crawling and walking.

It’s always a good idea to introduce your dog and baby gently and gradually. If your dog is already established in the home, he or she may feel jealous and fret at their arrival. You will need to give them lots of attention to help them feel at ease.

Dogs should always be supervised around babies and young children. Always. Even if you feel you know them well, there should always be an adult present. You never really know how they are going to react, especially if the children are boisterous. Safety gates can help keep them apart when necessary.

Research has shown that having a pet around in the first years of a child’s life may increase their tolerance to allergens. Stats also show that children who grow up around pets are less likely to become ill.

There is no right or wrong answer as to whether you should introduce a dog first or a baby. This will depend on your family’s circumstances. But it’s worth having the facts so you can make an informed decision.


  1. We struggled with this decision too and we went with a baby first (I am 6 months pregnant now), and we will get a dog in a year or so.

  2. This is always a hard decision, one I'm glad I won't have to make for quite a few years! There are ups and downs to either side so this is a great post to show you both :)

  3. It's a tricky decision to make - we didn't get a dog til the boys were in their teens simply because our lives were so hectic before that. But you've posted some really good advice here.

  4. I have come to the decision that I won't be getting a dog whilst the kids are this age {6,4 and newborn} the only reason is because I literally won't have the time for the dog. When the kids are older, I would love one.

  5. We already have a child, but we would love a dog. So in our case, the child was first, the dog will be second! :)

  6. It is so difficult to decide
    I've been in houses where I've cringed at the dogs behaviour with babies

  7. We have 4 kids a dog and a cat. The pets came first. We find it hard to give the animals enough time