I side lie nurse in bed, and let our dog Barnabus (aka Bubba and Bub) sleep with us still. We have an Arm’s Reach co-Sleeper next to the bed.
What we did to prepare for this was this (we have a Skye Terrier mix who is VERY attached to us, as we are to him):
1. It helped during the last 5 weeks of my pregnancy that I couldn’t go out to walk him, so M took over all those walks he goes on. That set Barnabus up to get used to the idea that I wasn’t his primary caretaker anymore. It really worked. He wasn’t as reliant on me for anything (he has the clever way of communicating – he will go and sit by what he wants and make small little “hurf!” noises).
2. He went to my parent’s house while we were in the hospital and my Mom would bring him clothes the baby had worn (not a blanket – dirty clothes that had contact with his skin).
3. A few hours before we went home, my parents dropped Bubba off and let him chill in the house a few hours.
4. On our way home from the hospital, we stopped at Wendys and got him a plain cheeseburger (no toppings other than cheese).
5. When we pulled up, I stayed in the car with J, and my husband brought all our hospital smelling bags inside and played with Bub for a little but.
6. After about 5 minutes of play, husband brought Bub outside on his leash, and gave Bub to me. I pet Barnabus for a little bit while husband waited for me with J still inside the car.
7. Husband then brought J out of the car, and we let Bubba see the baby.
8. Then we brought them both inside, and I gave him the cheeseburger. I am the more dominant person to Bubba in the house, so it was better that husband carried J inside and I gave Bubba the burger.
While Bub was busy with his extremely special, once-in-a-lifetime treat, we were able to get J situated and the dog didn’t freak out on him. We still don’t let Bubba get close to the baby unless he is super calm and relaxed, and when I nurse in bed, I am in between the baby and the dog. Bubba has been an ANGEL with the baby, but remember, he is CONSTANTLY supervised. But he has not shown any jealousy or anything.
It also might of helped that my husband had off for 4 weeks after J came home (on paternity leave). That helped Bubba have a lot of his attention that he needs. Now that husband is back at work, I am seeing him get sad during the day, so I try and play with him whenever I can so he doesn’t get jealous.