Why Do Cats Hate Babies?
Last week my good friend Sam asked me “Should I get rid of my cat before my baby is born?”
The debate around the risks of having both a cat and a baby in the house isn’t a new one, there has been much discussion on how safe it is to let your furry friend get acquainted with the newest (and loudest) member of the household. Some perils are very real – for instance cats should not be allowed to share a sleeping space with your baby.
If puss were to snuggle up close to babies face he could suffocate the infant. Invest in a cosy cat bed for your much-loved moggy and make sure it’s well away from your moses basket or cot. However, there are a few myths about cats and babies that are simply untrue, allow us to enlighten you.
Myth: If Your Baby Cries Your Cat Will Try and Harm Him.
Fact: We are all well aware that cats are inquisitive creatures, so the shrill sound of a baby crying is bound to pique kitty’s interest. He will no doubt want to find out what all the fuss is about (and why this new bundle is making such a lot of noise).
However, it’s highly unlikely your cat will want to hurt your baby or consider him a threat. It’s a good idea to introduce your cat and baby early on so they can get used to one another, don’t try and leave kitty out, allow him to see and smell the infant and he will be less likely to feel the need to investigate every time he hears your baby crying.
Myth: All Cats Have Fleas and Flea Bites Are Fatal for Babies.
Fact: First off not all cats have fleas, most cared for cats don’t suffer from the invasion of these annoying little insects. However, it does happen occasionally and if you find your moggy does have a flea problem it’s important to seek treatment as a priority. You will also need to de-flea your home as fleas are robust little creatures who do not necessarily need a cat or dog to transport themselves on, they will happily make themselves at home in your pad.
Make sure you change your bedding and vacuum your home regularly – don’t give the fleas an excuse to get comfy! If you do have a baby in the house that’s exposed to fleas don’t panic – flea bites are not deadly – but they are irritating.
Don’t be surprised if your baby acquires a rash, it’s important to get this treated as soon as possible as scratching bites can cause infection. Make sure you prevent further outbreaks by regularly “flea-ing” your moggy – use a product that’s specifically for cats. Fleas can be caught at any time and are not pleasant for you or puss.
Myths: Cats Can’t Bond with A Baby.
Fact: If your cat is happy to be around the baby and is well-behaved then encourage this conduct by offering treats or playing with kitty. Make sure you build a rapport by allowing your cat to associate the baby with positive actions and experiences. This way your cat will be more inclined to get to know your baby and they can forge a tender connection.
Myth: Cats Will Try and Steal the Breath of a Baby.
Fact: Some feel that the smell of milk on an infant is enough to drive your cat wild, and that he will skulk into your child’s cot and proceed the suck the milky air from his lungs. Although cats do love to get warm and cosy (cuddling up close to your face) they do not have a penchant for stealing the very air we breathe!
Myth: Cats Are Jealous Creatures and Won’t Like A New Baby in The House.
Fact: When you bring your new baby home you might notice a change in the way your cat behaves. This is not down to your cat feeling jealous, it’s due to the fact that cats are susceptible to change. They like routine and order – so a new little person in the house (along with lots of visitors) means the arrival of strange new odours, sounds, and a different schedule. That’s a lot for any puss to cope with as they witness their beloved owner getting up at random times during the night and looking bleary eyed during the day.
Make sure you don’t neglect kitty – he still needs your love and attention too! When it’s your little one’s nap time have a snuggle with kitty, put him on your lap and stroke him, stress-busting for you and lovely for your furry friend – listen to his rhythmical purr and enjoy ten minutes of pure relaxation.
And here is a final proof that babies and cats get along :