Monday, March 30, 2015

Duke & His New Little Buddy

One thing I did not consider when having a baby was how Duke, my fur-baby, my "first born" would react to the new arrival. All throughout my pregnancy he was uber lovable and super attached to me. I assumed that because he could somehow sense there was a baby that he would instantly be overjoyed and adjusted to the new arrival.
Boy was I wrong....
When I went into labor, Dusty's dad came and picked Duke up and took him out to the farm to stay while we were at the hospital and during the early days of transitioning with Nolan. After a few days of being home and adjusted (as much as we could) to the new baby, we had Dusty's parents bring Duke to the house for a "meet and great." Duke was not impressed. He gave Nolan a few licks on the feet and a couple sniffs, and was clearly experiencing some sibling jealousy.
Not once did Duke growl or act aggressive toward Nolan, he was more hurt and upset by me! This took me completely off guard and as a new exhausted mom with fluctuating hormones, this totally broke my heart. I'd call for Duke or go near him to cuddle and he would be completely aloof to me. He would ignore me, not make eye contact with me and walk past me as I called for him. To have my fur-baby act like this was devastating.
Luckily....with some puppy treats, string cheese and extra emphasis on cuddling Duke, he has come around to both Nolan and I, and harmony is restored! It took a good solid week before Duke would sit next to me on the couch, go near Nolan and I if we were together and even sleep on the bed with Dusty and I. Thankfully we are all adjusted and back to normal.
If anything, Duke is now completely in love with Nolan and wants to share his dog toys with him during play time!
Lesson learned: I should have listened to the advice I had read in my pregnancy books. They say it's a good idea to distance yourself a bit from your pet towards the end of pregnancy so they are adjusted to not getting as much attention. I definitely didn't do that. If anything I cuddled him more. We did things like let him smell Nolan's blanket and clothes from the hospital to adjust him to baby, but didn't think about adjusting him to the attention he received from Dusty and myself.  Learn from my mistakes!
Now what I'm looking forward to is seeing how Duke and Nolan become the best of friends. I can already see the bond between them developing and it's adorable!

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