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Old 03-03-2013, 11:53 AM   #1
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Training a dog as 'baby monitor'

I'm thinking about training our dog as a baby monitor . He's a chow/husky mix (possibly). He's fantastic dog, great with the kids, and very very smart. We've only had him inside for a month (he was an outside dog) but he's learned the different rooms and where to lay down at different times (kitchen, rug while we're eating, kennel at night, don't come in our room, etc). When we are all in the playroom, he stays watch at the top of the stairs. When baby is sleeping, I can't hear her cry when we're playing, but he can if he's in the hallway. Thinking about training him to come get me when he hears her cry. Is this possible?

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Old 03-03-2013, 12:02 PM   #2
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It's definitely possible. Some dogs do that w/o training. Back before DD was mobile, my dogs liked her more and would freak when she cried. My husky mix would bring her his toy, he still plays with her and checks on her.

Now that she crawls after them, and she gets more attention than they do, the basset hound is jealous. I had to train him not to get in between DD and I when we're sitting on the floor.

As far as how to train him, it depends on how much English he knows. We ask my husky mix "where's the baby?" if he's getting too rowdy around her and he stops what he's doing to give her a kiss then get out of her way. If he can understand what you say to him like that, then pick a phrase and keep using it. Bring him with you when you go get her when she cries.

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Old 03-03-2013, 12:12 PM   #3
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Re: Training a dog as 'baby monitor'

It is definitely possible. I have a 1 year old pom and he is very attentive to my 5 month old. If my DS sneezes, grunts, coughs, crys, makes pretty much any kind out of the ordinary sound my pom gets me. I didn't train him to do this though. It pretty much just happened. Your dog sounds very intelligent, so I am sure you could train him to do that easily. Just teach the dog baby's name or a word you use to refer to your baby. After that make a phrase for what is happening, showing him what you need him to do, etc.
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Old 03-03-2013, 12:16 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by elizabeth.scalf
I'm thinking about training our dog as a baby monitor . He's a chow/husky mix (possibly). He's fantastic dog, great with the kids, and very very smart. We've only had him inside for a month (he was an outside dog) but he's learned the different rooms and where to lay down at different times (kitchen, rug while we're eating, kennel at night, don't come in our room, etc). When we are all in the playroom, he stays watch at the top of the stairs. When baby is sleeping, I can't hear her cry when we're playing, but he can if he's in the hallway. Thinking about training him to come get me when he hears her cry. Is this possible?
Of course. I would not rely on him completely though. A very well trained dog can only tiredly be expected to obey 90% of the time unless it's his 'job' and is not free to his own devices. A 'guide' dog or 'working' dog had a very strict structure and will obey 100% of the time. A great family dog usually 90%. Of course there are exceptions to the rule. But if a dog was a reliable babysitter, I imagine people would have realized this long ago. Lol.

I would simply invest in an actual baby monitor.
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Old 03-05-2013, 10:04 AM   #5
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I think it's definitely possible. As a humorous side note, our dog is the official poop monitor. When baby poops, he lets me know before the baby even gets fussy. This is especially helpful now that the 13 month old no longer fusses after a poop. Usually the dog will go up to the baby, sniff his bottom a few times, then look at me with this exasperated look like "Hey, aren't you going to do something about this?" Lol.
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Old 03-05-2013, 10:11 AM   #6
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I think it's definitely possible. As a humorous side note, our dog is the official poop monitor. When baby poops, he lets me know before the baby even gets fussy. This is especially helpful now that the 13 month old no longer fusses after a poop. Usually the dog will go up to the baby, sniff his bottom a few times, then look at me with this exasperated look like "Hey, aren't you going to do something about this?" Lol.
Love this!!
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Old 03-05-2013, 10:59 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by PurpleFluff View Post
I think it's definitely possible. As a humorous side note, our dog is the official poop monitor. When baby poops, he lets me know before the baby even gets fussy. This is especially helpful now that the 13 month old no longer fusses after a poop. Usually the dog will go up to the baby, sniff his bottom a few times, then look at me with this exasperated look like "Hey, aren't you going to do something about this?" Lol.
Cute! Of course I wouldn't expect our dog to be a reliable babysitter. But I think it would be a fun novelty to have the dog come get me if he hears baby before I do!
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Old 03-05-2013, 01:11 PM   #8
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Re: Training a dog as 'baby monitor'

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Cute! Of course I wouldn't expect our dog to be a reliable babysitter. But I think it would be a fun novelty to have the dog come get me if he hears baby before I do!
It is definitely possible. I accidently taught Duke all kinds of useful commands to help me deal with Tharen. They were inseparable from day one so it became very comical to ask Duke "where is your baby" and watch him run for Tharen as if he had lost something important. What started out as just a fun trick turned out to be useful when I needed to coral Tharen away from dangerous items (like the hot stove). I could just say "Duke get your baby" and he would rush in and either lay on top of Tharen or head butt him towards the living room keeping him out of harm's way. It worked well on walks for keeping Tharen out of the street as well. He also learned "Touch" which can mean anything from a nose in against the body to a paw placed on a person and he uses that to calm Tharen down when he is hyper. He will go check on the boys when he hears screaming (or when I tell him to) and if Tharen is out of control he will lay on him or "touch" him with his head or feet.
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