On April 29 at 8:08 in the morning, this dog-lovin’ family welcomed its first baby of the human persuasion into the world. Sebastian MacArthur changed our lives forever – and we couldn’t be happier.
Well…maybe we should ask Buffy & Amigo about that!
As a woman who considers herself somewhat of a dog expert, I thought I had a pretty good idea of how each of my pups would react when Sebastian came home to join our family. I thought wrong.
Amigo – who I thought would have issues with jealousy and loud baby noises – was immediately curious and quite enthralled with our new bundle of joy.
Now, three weeks after Sebastian arrived on the scene, Amigo is still the first to react when the baby cries or makes any new baby noises. (And by react I mean run to Sebastian to check on him…and then look to us to see if we are properly responding!) Instead of trying to nudge Sebastian out of our laps to commandeer prime petting position, he seems to enjoy snuggling up next to him and snoozing side by side. I don’t know if it’s mommy hormones or if I’m just a sucker for dogs and babies – but it is a sight that has reduced me to tears more than once.
Buffy – who I thought would instantly bond and feel protective over her new little brother – has not shared Amigo’s enthusiasm. For the first few days, Buffy treated Sebastian like he was the scariest monster she had ever laid eyes on. Rarely wanting to be in the same room, she would cautiously peek at the baby from behind a chair or behind a visiting family member. My attempts to bring the baby closer to her so she would become familiar with that foreign “new baby” smell sent her (literally!) running for cover. She looked positively offended the first night I took Sebastian out of his bassinet and brought him to the bed to nurse. Anyone who thinks dogs cannot feel emotions should have looked into Buffy’s eyes at that moment. I couldn’t have been more sure of what she was thinking if she had opened her mouth and told me herself!
I am also glad that Sebastian is living with dogs from day one. Already he is completely unphased by dog barks. (Let me tell you…some of those barks startle me!) And while my mom things it boarders on bad parenting – I don’t see anything wrong with him getting a puppy kiss every now and then. (From reading the above paragraphs, I bet you can guess who does the kissing!) Logically, I know that Sebastian isn’t going to remember these first experiences with his canine siblings, but I can’t help but think that on some level it will make him feel more comfortable around dogs for the rest of his life.
Because what’s the point of having a baby if you aren’t going to raise him as a dog lover.