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Cats and New Baby

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 
Hi all!

I may as well be a newbie b/c it's been sooo long since I've posted anything. Hope everyone's doing well.

Quick question for you experienced cat mommies.

My husband and I are expecting our first human baby. I am only 7 weeks so we have a good while to go...but I am wondering about my cats. Mainly Merlynn. She sleeps in bed with me every night. She likes to cuddle right by my pillow so I can put my arm around her.

When the baby arrives, we are planning to have him/her sleep in a crib in our bedroom, so I am guessing I will have to close the door to keep the cats out so they don't jump in the crib.

I will hate to close them out, though, but I want to do what is best. I'm sure they will whine and scratch at the door...

If anyone has had experience with this or would like to share any advice, I would appreicate it. Thanks.
post #2 of 16
i have never had an issue with either of my kids. our kitty ishtar used to sleep in the crib with my oldest, she slept by his feet so i never worried about her smothering the baby. when the baby was born (well, she is four now) both of our cats slept in our room and our youngest co-slept with us (when breastfeeding it is just a lot easier to have the baby right there LOL) perk slept on our bed every night, and took naps with the baby.

it will only be a big deal if you make it a big deal. close the door if you are finding that the cats like to sleep right up next to the baby, if they are still doing their same old same old routine and leaving the baby be don't worry about it.
post #3 of 16
Thread Starter 
Thanks for your reply kwren. I don't want to make it a big deal so I hope all will be well. Anyone else have any experiences?
post #4 of 16
Lucky loves to cuddle on my lap so he was sad when my belly got too big for him to fit. He normally cuddles with me during the winter but he didn't while I was pregnant. Only one cat out of the 7 still wanted to cuddle.

Check out you-tube for baby crying videos and play them for your kitty.
Our son slept in his crib since day one and we keep his door shut. I do occasionally put him in bed with me. Spunky knows to check the bed before walking around. Benson got freaked out and doesn't jump on the bed in the morning anymore. They learn to adjust.
post #5 of 16
I don't have any personal experiences with babies and cats, only that everyone I know on my grandfathers side of the family who owned a cat, got rid of it when their baby came!

I thought this was a horrible thing until my grandfather told me that when he was younger and they had a cat, it smothered the baby in it's crib.

I always wondered why he hated cats too... I guess I can put some understanding into it as this is a good reason to strike fear into anybody...

But I think if you are a knowing and responsible cat mommy and human mommy, then you can prevent these kinds of horrible accidents from happening.

I see no reason to lock your cat out, unless you observe that she likes to disturb the baby frequently.


Congratulations on your pregnancy too!
post #6 of 16
Thread Starter 
Thanks for your replies Crazyforinfo and Nekomania. My Merlynn loves to sleep on my lap, I wonder how she'll act when there is not enough lap for her in the coming months. Guess we'll have to wait and see. It's going to be interesting...

And yes, Neko I see why your grandfather hated cats. That is a sad story. I have no intentions whatsoever or getting rid of my cats to "accommodate" for the new human baby. They are my first babies...so they'll be around for a while.
post #7 of 16
When my niece was a baby and would be staying with me, I always felt more comfortable with her being in the bed with me. (I am a light sleeper) Anyway, Babygirl, was shy around her when she was awake, but every night that my niece was there (which was MANY nights) Babygirl would cuddle right into her and sleep.
post #8 of 16
Thread Starter 
Pami, that sounds adorable! I can't wait. I'm sure my kitties are gonna love to cuddle with the new baby.
post #9 of 16
I had a Siamese when I was pregnant who I had for 10 years before I got pregnant. There was never a question in my mind that both baby and cat would co-exist. Susie (my siamese was very much mine and was with me on my lap whenever I sat and slept under the covers with me.

When Jennifer was born I allowed Susie to sit on my lap as I breast-fed. Jennifer slept in our room in a large laundry basket for the first few weeks. Susie never bothered her. In fact, Susie was extremely tolerant of Jennifer as a baby and Jen's first word was "Seesuz".

It is an old wives tale that cats smother babies. Some cats will try to lick milk off baby's face though. I often wonder if the babies that died were not the result of crib death that the older generation did not know anything about rather than by a cat smothering them.
post #10 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by Yosemite View Post
I often wonder if the babies that died were not the result of crib death that the older generation did not know anything about rather than by a cat smothering them.
This could very well be possible. I have not read any documented cases with solid proof that the cat was responsible for the babies death.

In fact, the only time I'd ever heard of it outside of the internet was through my grandfather.

But I've known cats to do some very strange things around dead bodies, and I think that if the cat were "caught" in the crib with a dead child, it had more than likely jumped in afterwards.

You know...cats, they guard the dead.
post #11 of 16
When we brought my granddaughter home, we allowed the cats to see her immediately. They sniffed at her, and licked her little head, then one of them took up position as her guardian. He has slept at her feet from the time she was just a few days old. When she would cry, he would make a big fuss if he thought they were not getting to her fast enough. When she began walking, he would walk beside her, and would nap on the couch with her, sleeping to the outside so she could not roll off. He very patiently accepted wet, sloppy baby kisses, hugs, and the occasional baby hat. She is 4 now, and they are still the best of friends.
She learned from the time she could understand that she had to be sweet to kitty and not pull his tail or ears, so it was a good lesson for her in the treatment of animals. They are so sweet together.
post #12 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nekomania View Post
This could very well be possible. I have not read any documented cases with solid proof that the cat was responsible for the babies death.

In fact, the only time I'd ever heard of it outside of the internet was through my grandfather.

But I've known cats to do some very strange things around dead bodies, and I think that if the cat were "caught" in the crib with a dead child, it had more than likely jumped in afterwards.

You know...cats, they guard the dead.
I don't know about the smothering but I heard cats like breast milk & that's what attracts them to the baby's mouth.
post #13 of 16
Thread Starter 
Those are such sweet stories. I don't know if I'd be happy or just plain perplexed if my baby's first word was my kitty's name. That's too cute. At least my husband and I wouldn't be hurt by her choosing to say dadda or momma first. hahaha.

My pet sitter also told me about cats wanting to lick the milk off the babies mouths. Pretty rough little licker!
post #14 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by merlynn's mom View Post
Those are such sweet stories. I don't know if I'd be happy or just plain perplexed if my baby's first word was my kitty's name. That's too cute. At least my husband and I wouldn't be hurt by her choosing to say dadda or momma first. hahaha.
Exactly - no hurt feelings there!
post #15 of 16
Congratulations on your pregnancy!

My daughter is 5 months old and we have 3 cats.

We had her bassinet in our room for the first 2 months. The cats came into our bed but didn't want anything to do with the wiggling, crying baby in the bassinet. Molly peered in once from the side of the bed and that was it.

Our daughter is now in her own room and we do keep her door closed. The only reason being that our oldest cat Reilly will go in there sit beside her crib and chirp at her...sometimes he digs the carpet trying to get into her closet and it wakes her up.

I've never had an issue with the cats and her milk
post #16 of 16
I've never personally had experience with cats and babies as I don't have any kids, but I wouldn't worry about it too much as long as you keep an eye on them. Things do happen and personally I'd be more worried about the baby accidentally hurting the cat and getting a scratch or a bite. My cats are allowed to defend themselves from my 4 year old nephew and if he's been annoying them I don't discipline them for taking a swat, but then my nephew can be a little rough.
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