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Single Parents, can you help me?

November 13th, 2005, 10:39 PM
I've been a bit worried as of late. I am getting to an age where I would like to have children.
I live in a townhouse, that does not have a fenced backyard. So right now, when Jayde needs to potty, she gets a walk. She gets alot of walks during the day.
She doesn't like to go pee or poo when she is out on the lead in the backyard. we have it out there for when I am doing yard work or what not.

What happens when I have a baby to take care of? I can't leave the baby alone in the house to walk Jayde. and if the baby is sleeping, can't really wake it to take Jayde out?

What do you single moms do?

I worry about things like this. my mother tells me I worry too much.
I've been around kids all my life, but I neve really understand how mom's do it. Even just bringing groceries in the house, when I was babysitting my friends son, i kept bringing him out with me and made multiple trips. My mom was just like 'leave him in the play pen, bring the moniotr with you... hes FINE" but I worry.

I won't be a single mom, I do have a fiancee (soon to be husband) but he works very long shifts as a firefighter

November 13th, 2005, 10:49 PM
Hmmm, I don't have kids so can't say from experience, but maybe try to take the dog out when the baby's awake? I'm sure your baby will love the many walks just as much as your dog, you could get one of those fancy baby carraiges to keep him/her happy and warm in all weather.. not sure though- I'm sure someone else will have better advice!

November 13th, 2005, 10:56 PM
I am not a single mom but my husband works nights so I am alone with the kids and dog 5 to 6 nights a week. I usually take the kids and the dog for a walk after dinner. If its to cold or were just too tired Joey and I will go in the backyard for a bit of fetch and he'll "go" out there as well. Anew born or younger child could be bundled up and taken for walk with the dog either in a baby bjorn or a stroller.

November 13th, 2005, 11:05 PM
I am a lone parent (oilpatch widow) who is at home 10 days at a time with three kids. We got our dog 2 weeks before the third child was born, she (Niki a border collie/lab cross) was 13 wks old. The baby really enjoyed going for walks with the puppy. I finally got a Gentle Leader to walk her with and added straps to the stroller for the other children to hold on to, (I had three under five at the time), walks became a family event. In the early days though, when all the kids were asleep at night I would take Niki out for a quickie walk just outside of our house, never getting out of sight if the house. Being a single mom should never limit us in what we want to do, and being a lone parent for most of the time has not stopped me from doing the things I want to do. I know you'll be able to find a way to have your puppy and a baby and get along just fine. Jogging strollers are great if one jogs, I found them very hard to steer. I used an umbrella stroller from the time each of my babies were three months old. Except for when I had the caddy- a tandem stroller. That was also hard to steer, but it held two and I was happy! Hope this made sense. I think raising my youngest with the dog has been a wonderful way to raise an animal lover, they are the best of friends, especially at meal time because she knows just who to go to for freebies, as he has always shared and so has she. I always made sure to buy the best dog food because he always helped himself to it!(Yuck,I know but what can you do?) Anyway best of luck and congrats.:thumbs up

November 13th, 2005, 11:11 PM
having a man or partner around does not mean anyone else is walking the dog, i asure you. most at home mums have partners that work alot so that option is not available.

i have walked my 9yo German shep cross at 6am every single day of her life, unless were sick. i am expecting our first babe in a few months. i cant stop walking my dog just because of a new human, that was not the deal she signed up for i assure you, and it would creat animosity for her also. here is what i am doing-

i will continue to walk my dog daily, i am just trying to adjust her routine for the arrival. so instead of leaving dot on 6am, i will vary that by a few minutes to an hour. but when bub comes i will determine our walks by the babys routine. that is after a feed or sleep or such, we will walk, i am aiming to keep it in the morning as it gets hot here.

i have purchased a baby sling, this will be used on most days unless it is raining. if it is raining i have purchased a rain cover for the pram, we will jsut take a different route on those days and stay on tracks, im happy to walk in the rain as long as bub is dry and warm. a dog needs excersise everyday, its cruel and wrong not to, so i will jsut fit that into my day really.

i believe this will bring my dog closer to her new human, it will be thier bonding time so to speak, bonding time for all of us really.. i dont wnat charlie to miss out, neither the baby. so i cant see any major problems with walking a baby and a dog, not to mention after having a baby you will need plenty of excersise to get back to shape, and walking is the best way to do it.

look time slows and changes with kids, its all do-able, just perhaps not in the same time frames as now is all. we are a pack, and that is not going to change due to new pack members.:D

so its all do-able, excersise is essential for all of us. jsut dont rely on a man to be there every single day when the dog needs walking, or any other day except possibly on the weekends.

November 14th, 2005, 06:57 AM
The day after I brought my baby home, I bundled him up in a backpack and walked Winnie. My son is 7 today and he still loves long walks...and he gets to hold onto Winnie this time. When the time comes, its amazing how creative moms can'll see. Enjoy don't worry so much. When you worry too much you tend to miss out on many things.

November 14th, 2005, 07:19 AM
I have the same problem, but I am on the first floor in an apt, so I do lock up, and stay right underneath the babies window so I can hear noises. Is something were to happen, I hop the balcony and get in the house in less than a min. I am not worried, everyone knows i own a rottweiler. :)

November 14th, 2005, 10:55 AM
I also had that problem, when the twins were just babies, I would also do the quick walk after everyone was in bed at night, I had a really good baby monitor. And during the day we would all go out for walks together, and sometimes if my kids would both go to sleep at the same time, I would take a minute to take him then. Luckily at that time we only had Trigs. Another thing was teaching Trigger his magic it's-important-to-go-pee-now-words, "hurry up", helped a lot, leave the long walks for when everyone was there. As for groceries, I live on the second floor, so I have to make several trips, what I used to do was to bring up the kids, (so much easier with just one), and put them in a safe place, ie; playpen, highchair, etc. then bring up the groceries and stow the stroller. I liked putting them in their little car seats in the living room and then they could watch me lugging all the groceries into the house.But easier still, is getting your mom or someone to give you a ride, then ask for a hand to bring all inside, it is really hard to get a lot of groceries when you just have a stroller.

November 14th, 2005, 11:48 AM
I take my niece for the week-end every few weeks. She's 18 months now and we've been doing this for a year. I have to admit it was a very hard juggling act when the pup was small and needed to go out every hour, but as others have said, I'd just bundle her up in a blanket, take the pup out then come back in.

Walks were saved for when she was awake and ready for a walk. Now, when we go walking, she holds the leash (which is also clipped to the stroller). Teach the dog to pee when asked and it'll help lots. If I can do it, I know you can!

November 14th, 2005, 01:23 PM
Well, I have kids and animals all over the place down here... :D What happens is quite simply - you become very very very efficient. How? It just happens because you have no choice. *chuckle*

My equipment of choice: a baby monitor (& lots of batteries), a baby sling, and a good stroller with off-road type tires. I wake up early. EARLY. Like before dawn - because I have no choice - that's when Emily wakes up for a morning bottle. Morning bottle given - she goes back to sleep for another two or three hours. It's Judge's turn for a morning walk then.. So I grab the baby monitor and take him for a spin while everyone is still asleep. By the time I get back it's time to feed the kitties and get the boys ready for school. Walk back in from waving goodbye and Yvonne is awake and ready to go... So I keep her entertained by letting her 'help' with the laundry, making the beds, and feeding Judge. By her nap time - Emily is wide awake again so after her mid-morning bottle I strap her in the baby sling and she and I take a really short stroll with Judge and the baby monitor. :D And then I get Emily back in bed in time for Yvonne to wake up.. and so it goes for the rest of the day....

My own hints and tips would be these (give or take a few):

1. Stick to a schedule. Everyone gets cranky when there is no schedule.
2. Invent new ways to walk the dog -- sometimes back and forth a few hundred times in front of the house is the only thing you can manage in a given day -- but it's better than nothing and it's still part of the schedule!
3. Mix and match. Part of Judge's play time each day involves running up and down the stairs with me when I gather up laundry. Part of Yvonne's playtime is feeding Judge. Part of Emily's playtime is watching the kittens play and part of the kittens' play is pouncing on Judge as he runs up and down the stairs.
4. Trust your instincts. Don't forget that with motherhood comes an enhanced sense of hearing and smell -- not to mention a brand new tingly 'mother sense' which tends to go off when something is amiss (don't ignore it! it's real)... Not to mention a super-enhanced mothers-only multi-tasking skill that comes out of nowhere....

I remember being scared to death at the prospect of taking care of a baby but I find that once you overcome the desire to eat your young -- motherhood itself irons out all the kinks.:D

November 14th, 2005, 01:32 PM
Very clever, Pags. I don't think I'd be able to hack the schedule part...:eek:

November 14th, 2005, 02:05 PM
My own hints and tips would be these (give or take a few):

1. Stick to a schedule. Everyone gets cranky when there is no schedule.

AMEN!!!!! It's so wonderfully true, whether it's childrearing or housebreaking or feeding or anything! Thanks for the chuckle Pags :)

November 14th, 2005, 02:13 PM
I am glad to see that I am not the only one who lets the dog out for alittle playtime when She is in bed. I was scared that ppl would call the police or something. I have a huge beware of dog sign, and the doors have double locks. And there is a baby gate in front of her door. So even if she does wake up, she can play in her room until I get back in...MAX 15 mins. But I am playing with him right outside her window. No one comes near because of the rottweiler, LOL

November 14th, 2005, 02:39 PM
Re: "I remember being scared to death at the prospect of taking care of a baby"

Pags, this reminded me of the first time I babysat - I ran to check the baby, a newborn maybe 2 weeks old avery 5 minutes or so to make certain she was still breathing - she was , whew! (I was a teenager then of course) - . Granted, I also felt that way the first time I examined a patient (a child) with the parents looking on, feeling somewhat like a fraud and wondering if they thought I even knew what I was doing, lol Fortunately, we get better - and wow, you sound like you have a great system!

Sometimes, I look back at marvel at my mom who while not a single parent, had the responsibility for getting the kids to school - and we were all such characters! She worked fulltime too and would stay up late grading papers and helping us with homework. The thing is at 76, she has now slowed down at all!!

Jayde, I used to walk my baby brother and dog at the same time - I'd wait till he baby was up from his nap and then we'd all go off. Since we had a fox terrier who decided it was her responsibility to fiercely protect the baby - whom she loved, she was never far away and never tugged on her lead. (tho when he 1st arrived she was a little miffed at the newcomer till she realized she was not losing out in the attention dept and she parked herself at his crib. Now he is crazy about dogs, has a chocolate lab that he loves more than anything!). So, I understand the worry but just time it right and you should be fine.

November 14th, 2005, 02:43 PM
sorry guys but im a little confused leading to alarmed. i dont get it, are you leaving your children sleeping unattended while you actually walk the dog a distance:eek: , or by walking do you mean take out the front of the building or whatever to pee which is no deal??

never leave a young child unnatended and leave the house for long, even the best baby monitor will not stop SIDs (which you dont often hear either) or the miriad of other probs associated with small children.

but im assuming your not all that irrisponsible and would not do such a thing, right guys, right???:o

November 14th, 2005, 02:55 PM
As I said, I am on the 1st floor of an apt, I just play with him right outside her window, I can never ever picturing going for a walk without her, and leaving her un attended like that. I am earshot, and can climb the balcony to get to her need be. My daughter is a sound sleeper, and I do not let him out until she has been sleeping for a couple hours. I am no more than 20 feet from my balcony when I do this, and it is ONLY at night

November 14th, 2005, 03:22 PM
I don't think Pags actually meant she leaves her baby alone - unless I read it wrong. I cannot imagine she would do THAT - and you are so right Mel - I have seen too many parents at the ER with a baby who they thought would be fine because they had the baby monitor and "she wasn't crying"!! Problem was - she was not moving, Nothing electronic replaces a parent or guardian!

November 14th, 2005, 03:55 PM
I also had that problem, when the twins were just babies, I would also do the quick walk after everyone was in bed at night, I had a really good baby monitor. And during the day we would all go out for walks together... Another thing was teaching Trigger his magic it's-important-to-go-pee-now-words, "hurry up", helped a lot, leave the long walks for when everyone was there.

Sorry melanie, I was trying to be clear that the dog only got to go out for a quick pee when they were sleeping at night, but it does sound like he got to go for a walk (because I wrote "quick walk"), but that's not what I meant. Well, the dogs only have to go to the back door, I have to stand on the balcony with them, just in case the neighbors come, but we don't go around the block or anything.

November 14th, 2005, 04:18 PM
Er yeah I suppose it's important to be more clear here -- I don't mean to imply one should go hiking or something and leave the babies home alone. :eek: But I've had enough babies to tell you the world does not, indeed, explode if you leave them to sleep alone in another room for a few minutes. You've simply got to be realistic... when you're a single mother and people are telling you you can NEVER leave a baby unattended for even a flash of a moment even when they are sleeping soundly and have no history of health problems.... You've gotta stop and ask yourself, "Uh.. how exactly am I ever going to go to the bathroom? Do I get to take showers anymore? What happens when I fall asleep?" After saying all that though - right.. I'm talking taking short dog potty break walks just outside our house. :D

And CK brings up a really good point as well -- I never use the baby monitor to simply listen to see if the baby starts crying. If a baby started crying while I was listening to the monitor I think I'd faint straight away. Use the monitor to listen for the slightest movement or change.. babies move around a bit and their breathing changes when they're about to wake up.. make sure you're there before they do. And never rely on a monitor for more than a few minutes at a time. Egad.

By the way, I meant to mention that I'm not a single parent -- but I used to be... And as far as having a husband goes: I love my husband dearly and he's a fantastic dad but when it comes right down to it he is just another mouth to feed. :D

November 14th, 2005, 05:13 PM
Ok, now I'm confused. If you can't leave your baby alone in a room for 15 minutes while it's asleep, how do you live? What do you have to do, sit beside the crib all day staring at the baby? Can a baby with SIDS even be revived?

November 14th, 2005, 05:28 PM
That's my point, Prin. You do have to leave your baby unattended sometimes... but they should always be within ear-shot. I know there are many who think I am a terrible person for admitting this -- but I'm simply being honest. Sometimes we can be positively fanatical about this sort of thing. None of us want anything awful to happen.. and none of us want to be taken totally out of context either. So if I say 'you can't watch your baby every minute of every day' - the fear is that someone out there will read that and go to the movies and leave their infant at home alone.

This reminds me of that story of the people who took the advertisement for 'cruise control' literally when they bought their new car and proceeded to climb into their backseat to take a nap.... But I digress...

November 14th, 2005, 06:23 PM
oops, not meaning to scare anyone, and probably not thinking well either. no around here a walk literally means for a bit of distance, going to the toilet is jsut that. different words we use hey:o going out the front of the building, or yard or such is different than walking 5km while the kids sleep.

prin many times a day one would need to leave a baby unnatended, gosh your not going to sit and watch them sleep for hours while the washing is crawling away from the laundry or the flies carry away the dishes, its just not practicle. its fine to leave babies unnattended for some time, i used to leave my nephew and neice sleeping while i would go and do the garden and such, baby monitor in hand of course but i never relied on that. there are ways of minimising the risk of SIDS, like no doonas, breathable blankets, sleeping baby on backs and such. and often with sids there is no good reason for it and the parents did nothing wrong, it jsut happens.:sad: but sitting and fretting over a baby will only make a parents worries worse.i just meant dont go and walk for a hike and leave baby unatended, but the girls here are far to smart for that sort of dumb stuff:D

and i just brought a new baby monitor with an LCD screen and its all in color. i find that a bit more reassuring being able to see bub, as i said before you often dont hear sids but it can be a visible thing. it has a range of 100m so you could go to the line or garden and do things. but that aint no guarantee either as CK said, its jsut an added precaution i suppose, a reassuring toy for the mum. and i thought it would make a good doggy cam to:D also npte that the numbers of sids cases has dropped dramatically with the use of several techniques like those above, did you guys get the 'not on my tum mum' campaign, that has helped alot with children no longer sleeping face down and a variety of other methods..

but my mum never had nothing like that and the good majority of us are fine.:D

and if you found a baby experienceing a sids episode im sure you could help it, but sadly it often to hard to catch, i think CK would be able to advise on the reviveing thing after the event.

but as everyone here has aid, we can wlak dogs and kids, jsut takes a bit more organising and effort on our behalf. all is do-able if you put your mind to it...

now ladies, out there and walk the dogs and bubs, and we will all have nicely toned butts to show for our efforts.:D :angel:

November 14th, 2005, 06:59 PM
I actually knew of someone that actually did leave her kids alone when they were sleeping and actually went out. She actually got caught by social services and had both her kids taken away.

She later asked me is she could babysit my kids for a pack of smokes. No I dont think so.

They have baby monitors now that actually monitor heart rate or something like that and an alarm goes off if something is wrong.

Of course you should never put a baby to sleep on his stomach and make sure theres not to much extra stuff in the crib.

November 14th, 2005, 07:17 PM
oh wow mel! I really want one of those LCD monitors!! I don't really want it for the babies though.. I wanna spy on my boys and see what they're REALLY up to upstairs when I hear all the banging and thudding and generally destructive sounds... All they ever tell me is "Oh, Mom.. we were just reading..."

November 14th, 2005, 09:26 PM
Before all the SIDS stuff, I remember it was best to put a baby on its stomach to stop it from choking... Lucky for us, my mom didn't want us to be bow-legged so she risked us choking instead...:D

Mel what are "doonas"?

November 14th, 2005, 09:32 PM
That on the stomach thing is old. Unless its changed since I've had kids, its either on the back or propped on the sides. You can even get little wedgie things that prop the baby on his side. I think on the stomach it puts too much pressure on the heart or lungs not exactly sure. I remember I would put my kids to sleep on their backs and they would roll to their stomachs. I was going back in every few minutes to turn them over.

November 14th, 2005, 09:38 PM
Oh, ya, it's old.. :o

November 14th, 2005, 09:39 PM

found this on the net, the advice still seems to be the same. Everything changes so often when it comes to kids. My youngest would only sleep in his baby bjorn while I was in motion when he was under 6 months. If I stopped moving he would wail, so I did a lot of walking.

Actually baby Bjorns are excellent for walking dogs, no stroller to get tangled up and baby stays nice and warm next to your body. You can also wear a big coat to keep him/her extra warm. :)

November 14th, 2005, 09:44 PM
Remember those little cart things (that you put your baby in and they paddle around with their feet) that were banned a few years ago because too many babies were falling down stairs? Those were cool (unless you had stairs of course).

November 14th, 2005, 10:06 PM
Do you mean walkers. They now have stationary ones that the baby justs stands and spins, but if your kid is active enough they can move it across the room pretty good.

November 14th, 2005, 10:25 PM
Baby walkers you mean Prin? We had one when my brother was a toddler - and he loved it and the dog followed him everywhere in it - follwing the toddler and the crumbs, lol We had stairs for the basement but there was a door in front of it and nothing every happened but yep, they are now banned due to accidents. I gather that some ppl used them more than they should have or did not watch the child while in one. They tipped over easily - or some of them did. Peope still buy them at yard sales and flea markets are there are still accidents.

November 14th, 2005, 10:27 PM
It's actually illegal to sell them even in garage sales, so people have to be careful...

November 15th, 2005, 08:02 AM
Oh wow - the baby walkers are still not banned here.. They should be. Not only are they horribly dangerous but they are suspected in actually slowing the process of learning to walk.

And the "stationary" ones -- they're called exersaucers, I believe.. I had one of those for my first baby and he loved it -- but ABSOLUTELY -- he could move that thing anywhere he wanted. He just rocked it. (Of course kids can also 'drive' their baby beds around the room with a little determination...) On the bright side it really did give him a lot of exercise. And the toy is supposedly designed to improve balance and coordination -- the bottom is rounded and in order for your baby to not tilt to one side he has to constantly maintain balance... It may have very well done that too: he took his first steps just after his 7th month.. and was walking/running like a professional toddler by just before nine months.

November 15th, 2005, 08:55 PM
Wow I really started a conversation here
Thank you for all the replies.
I can get jayde to go by walking her to the street (10 feet from front door) and walk her back and forth infront of the house. But i was worried people would think I was a bad mother if I ever did that.

The other thing I wanted to mention, what is the best Monitors that you have seen? There is one that I adore AngelCare sound/movement monitor that has a pad under the mattress and it will alert you if there is no movement for 20 seconds..has anyone tried this? I've heard that it will sound if the baby stops breathing which can help against SIDS

November 15th, 2005, 09:06 PM
I heard about Angelcare too jayde doggie, and I heard it was great!

I spent alot of time outside in the yard while my son was sleeping, I had the monitor with me so I could hear him stir.
You can't possibly be with them ALL the time, I think thats being a bit to overprotective, It wouldn't be healthy for the parent either (never having a moment to even have a shower !!)

November 15th, 2005, 09:25 PM
Actually I was one of those moms that never let their kid out their site. I used to bring the baby in the bouncy seat into the bathroom while I had a shower, me, later it was the excersaucer.
I probably still am. I dont let my kids walk to school by themselves. Some of the grade two kids are now starting to do this. I'm just not comfortable.

That Angelcare monitor came out when my youngest was about 2. But then my youngest slept in our bed until he was two, and the other had to be carried to sleep until he was six months old, if you put him down he would wake up instantly. Then I just couldnt handle carrying him 24/7 eventually reached a breaking point and made him go to sleep in his crip. I let him cry went in every 5 minutes, but he eventually started sleeping, there is no way that I could just let him cry it for hours.
Once he was sleeping on his own, I was really paranoid, hes too quiet, what if his leg is stuck threw the bars, what if is head is stuck through the bars, what if some plastic is loose on the mattress and hes eating it, what if hes cold, what if he's hot, what if I didnt feed him enough and hes hungry,what if someone breaks in the window and takes him. I would have definatley had that Angelcare monitor back then.

November 22nd, 2005, 05:39 PM
Ok, so I'm not a mom, only an aunt. But have you all stoped to think that your mothers didn't have fancy gadgets to watch you while they chased down your sibblings, and folded the laundry, and did the dishes and probably weeded the garden too, and you're still are here.

There's only so much you can do, only so much you can control, after that, its nature's call...

As for the walkers, I think that, provided the parents aren't idiots, they weren't all that bad (I had one, as did my 3 brothers, but the steps were baricaded). The baby is going to take a tumble down the steps if its not guarded and they can crawl, so why remove their ability to strenghten their leg muscles... My niece had an exersaucer and hated it... She could stand but couldn't get anywhere.