I tend to classify people as "dog people" and "not dog people." Although well-intentioned, those who are not dog people can sometimes say things that make me cock my head to the side and think, "Are you crazy?"
For instance, when I was pregnant, one of my not dog people friends said, "Oh, now that you are expecting, what are you going to do about your dogs?"
"Huh? What do you mean?"
"Well, are you going to get rid of them?"
"Uh, no, why would I get rid of my dogs?"
"Well, two dogs is awfully hard to manage, especially with a baby. You might have to get rid of at least one of them. You know, so-and-so had two dogs. And she had to get rid of one of them when she had her baby."
Here would be where I cock my head to the side, scrunch my face in puzzlement, and think to myself, "Are you crazy?"
This past weekend, this same friend came over to visit the baby. She very quickly shooed Loki away from the baby when he was simply being curious and sniffing. She reminded me of Aunt Sarah from Lady and the Tramp. Even if the dog wasn't doing anything wrong, it's mere presence demanded that it be shooed away.
I think you shouldn't shoo away a dog especially when it's exhibiting curious behavior. If you always shoo the dog away when it's near the baby, then it'll just develop negative associations with the baby. Both Loki and Jujube have adjusted wonderfully to the baby. For the most part, they ignore the baby. Sometimes they are curious and will approach to sniff. One time Loki came to sniff when the baby was making lots of jerky movements. And the baby ended up punching Loki in the nose, but Loki didn't seem to care at all. He was a bit startled, but continued on sniffing. The baby is simply non-threatening to him.
We'll have to see how things progress as the baby becomes more mobile over time, but so far, introducing the baby into our pack has been possibly our easiest integration. Introducing Jujube was much harder. As I mentioned in my last post, full integration took 9 months. When Loki first met my father, Loki barked at him through his entire week's visit. Also, Loki never fully accepted my in-laws when they came for almost two months to help out with the baby. He understood that they spoiled him with more food, but he was never fully comfortable with them. In contrast, he only barked for a couple days when the baby first arrived, and seemed to very quickly adjust to our little bundle of joy. We offer ample opportunity for the dogs to be curious, to sniff, and to explore on their own terms. From time to time, we use treats and affection to positively reinforce them while they are near the baby, but we don't do it too much. Frankly, I don't have the time and energy to think about dog training when I'm caring for the baby. And well, so far, so good.