Vals not pregnant anymore

After several months of pregnancy in my house, some real, some hysterical I want to tell you all how it has ended.

On 22 July my wife gave birth to a gorgeous baby boy. As her real pregnancy came to an end, so to did Valerie’s fake one. First things first, I have to get some gloating out of the way. This is my Son. Ripley Danger Stuart.


Ok now we can talk about how it all went down. At 38 weeks, Ripley hadn’t engaged and so our obstetrician made the decision that he would be a planned C section. Since the hospital is about 30 minutes from our house and I wanted the opportunity to stay at the hospital for the duration of our stay I decided to put the dogs in a boarding Kennel for the entire time we would be in hospital.

Both my dogs, Val and Ryder stay at Pet Resorts Australia in Dural. We’ve always had great experiences with them and I know that during their stay they are safe and well looked after. The staff there are also no nonsense dog trainers, as opposed to dog “enthusiasts” so handling my two high drive dogs is no problem for them.

The best advice I could get from vets and just general fonts of knowledge in the dog world was that the best and safest way to bring Val’s false pregnancy to an end was to give her a baby. So during our stay at the hospital I made my way down to the gift shop and bought Val a nice soft toy Rhinoceros (They were out of Springer Spaniels).

The stuffed toy spent a day in the crib with Ripley and absorbed his smell nicely. He was due to come home on Monday morning so on Sunday night I went out to pick up the dogs. I took the wrap that he had been wearing all day as well. Waiting in their crates in the car were the baby stench soaked items. A wrap for Ryder, and a stuffed toy for Valerie.

Both dogs were immediately very interested in these items. Ryder had a good sniff of his and then just collapsed ready to go home. Valerie curled up around hers and went to sleep. I hoped my plan had worked but I wasn’t sure. By the time we got home it seemed it had. Val came out of the crate with the “baby” in her mouth. Carrying it very gently by the back of the neck, she ran into the house and was displaying it rather fondly.

At this stage I couldn’t be sure whether she was just happy about a new toy or if in fact she had taken it as a baby. BUT, when Ryder decided he too was going to play with it, suddenly it was very clear she thought it was not only alive, but hers. There is no fighting over toys in the house. I’ve never let the dogs fight over toys and they know it wont be accepted. So when Val placed the “baby” on the ground and started growling at Ryder as he approached then bit him on the neck when she felt he got to close, I knew she was serious. The creepiest part of this whole thing was when she started trying to feed it.

As I lay awake in bed that night I wondered if I had done the right thing? Sure, maybe her pregnancy symptoms would go away but what then? How long is she going to feed this toy? When will she realise its not alive? Will that cause her to go into depression? Turns out it was a lot of worry over nothing.

When Ripley came home the next day, both dogs greeted him excitedly. They paid their respects and gave him a good sniff on the head. Then Val ran off, came back with the toy and started destroying it. I hadn’t fooled her. She realised all she had was a stuffed rhinoceros and now there was a real live baby available for her to mother. Human or not, she wanted to mother him.

In the night as Ripley would cry and want to be fed, Valerie would be available to feed. She would wait at the top of the baby gate on our stairs, staring, waiting, hoping for an opportunity. To be honest it was pretty creepy.

At about the 3 week mark I noticed that her pregnancy symptoms had started to fade away. And now as I write this, Ripley is 9 weeks old and Valerie clearly loves him, but has given up on the idea that he is her baby.

So that’s how it has all come to a peculiar end.

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