My husband LOVES animals. Me not so much.

Both of us grew up without pets in the house. What amazes me is that he takes to all sorts of creatures (ok discounting insects/rats/mice/etc) and it’s adorable. Me? I get squimish around hamsters, guinea pigs are ok, I love bunnies and doggies and some cats. But their poop? Not so much. He, on the other hand, loves them wholeheartedly, poop and all.

I am SO happy that Sophie takes after her father in this aspect. She has no concept of fear when it comes to animals and she’s always wanting to go touch them. Rocky doesn’t know his luck yet!

Just the other day at dinner, we met this gorgeous Alaskan Malamute. Such a friendly, intelligent and gentle giant. Sophie went right up to him to pet him and wanted to follow him home! All through dinner she kept wanting to go see the pretty doggie and every time she would go up to him and squat/sit next to him.

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I’m not sure if the love for animals is nature/nurture but I do see the benefits of growing up with one.

  1. No fear! This is a good thing I reckon? No crazy stomping around dogs to get their attention and then running off when they react (I observed this little boy doing it and his mother egging him on. What??)
  2. Less allergies!
  3. Responsibilities – Sophie has taken to closing the doggie gate every morning before we leave. She’ll wave bye bye to Rocky and then wait for us to get ready to go. When we come back, she’s also in charge of opening the gate for Rocky. She also heads for his toys first thing and lays them on the floor for him to play with. She does this all on her own accord. It’s amazing to watch!
  4. More walks in the park = more fresh air = great! She insists on following her Daddy down to walk Rocky. She’s also quite possessive about his leash. She’ll hold on to it and hook it onto her arm before lifting both arms into the “Daddy carry me” position.

It’s really exciting watching the two of them. But me, I really want a cat. Though I don’t think I can manage all three!

Anyway I think the question I’ve been asked a lot with regards to the two of them is “How did you get the two of them to like each other?

Well, that’s a tough one. I googled and asked a lot of similar questions in forums before I gave birth. A lot of people told me to get Rocky used to her smell before bringing her home (i.e. give him a tee/blanket that she’s used in the hospital). Some other suggestions include swaddling a doll and bringing it around and showing it to him to get him used to the idea of having another someone in the house.

We didn’t do any of that. As you probably can see from now, we’re the sort of “let’s just wing it” kind of parents. We brought her home, let Rocky have a sniff at her and then didn’t let them come in contact for about a month. We figured a month would be enough for him to get used to the fact that he’s not supposed to eat her (we kid!) and for her to get used to his smell and presence.

Initially, he was waaaaaay excited about her and confused too. Everytime she cried, he would have a “OMG is everything alright?? Make that noise stop mommy!!” face. And then he decided that this new sheep is not that fun.

She, on the other hand, started noticing him at around 3-4 months. Too cute.

So I say, the baby takes a whole lot longer to realise that there’s a pet in the house. After that, it really depends on how fast your pet is compared to your baby!

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