Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Operation Acclimate Dog

With less than 6 weeks to go now until my due date, we have started slowly acclimating Orion to baby things. He happily accepted the change from office to nursery once we got a rug back down on the floor for him to park on, but he's having a bit more trouble with things in our main living spaces. 

This weekend we put together the swing and he alternates between being completely freaked out by it and by going up to it and smacking it with his nose ("nosing" is a typical curiosity behavior for him). Since neither behavior is entirely ideal, we are working on it. We have been turning it on in small increments throughout the day to get him used to the sounds and motion. He seems to be QUITE interested in the fluffy toys that circle above the baby's head, which may become problematic at some point. The swing also puts the baby at his EXACT head level so there will obviously need to be constant supervision while in use. 

Next up we are working on stroller comfort. He is 100% fine with the stroller inside the house, but freaks out when it's outside and moving. Going for walks is still a MAJOR hurdle for him anxiety-wise so it may take awhile for him to get comfortable with the stroller. I have hope he will overcome it though.

I have less hope in the stuffed animal/toy department. I think poor Eli is going to lose a LOT of toys to the doggie throughout his life. Orion understands the "leave it" command, but doesn't obey 100% of the time. I have better luck with "trade" which I accidentally came up with on my own. He had something in the yard I wanted and I happened to have a toy in my hand and just yelled to him "trade" which made him look up to me and come get it. Since then we have had great luck with the "trade" system as long as whatever we have in our hand is of better "value" to him. I may be carrying a LOT of treats and toys in my pocket in the coming months! 

Any tips on getting pets comfortable with a new household member? I need all the help I can get! 

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