The American Humane Association (AHA) is offering a free, downloadable booklet called Pet Meets Baby, to help parents introduce their pet to new family members. Many dogs are given up when new babies are brought home, because of parent’s fear for a child’s safety. Pets are easily stressed and do not always react well to changes in the home.
Pet Meets Baby also provides tips to acclimate new pets into a family with small children. Advice topics include how to prepare the pet’s possible re-location to another room; how to encourage careful first introductions; how to understand when a pet becomes stressed; and what to do so that children and pets can grow up together and form strong bonds.
After downloading the guide, readers can fill out a short survey. Once the survey is complete, pet parents are entered into a sweepstakes to win one of several prize packages from Victoria Stilwell, the star of Animal Planet’s “It’s Me or The Dog,” and a national ambassador for American Humane Association. The grand prize winner will receive a 30-minute private phone consultation with Ms. Stilwell to discuss her advice for particular pet challenges. Drawings for all prizes begin in August and continue through November.
“Introducing a new baby to your family pet can be a beautiful thing,” said Ms. Stilwell. “The bond that can develop between children and their pets is priceless if it is built on safe practices, mutual respect and love. Bringing home a new baby can be stressful for pets. If that process is not managed and successfully prepared for, the consequences can range from the mildly annoying to tragic. Pet Meets Baby is a great resource I recommend to my clients to make sure they know what to expect and how best to minimize the risks associated with introducing new family members – whether they have four legs or two.”
Pet Meets Baby can be downloaded at www.americanhumane.org/petmeetsbaby, or readers can order copies in packs of ten from Amazon that can be distributed to PTA groups, friends, or veterinary clients. American Humane Association strives to strengthen the relationship between people and animals. Distribution of Pet Meets Baby is made possible through a grant to American Humane Association from The P&G Fund of The Greater Cincinnati Foundation.