Sleep is forgotten; you walk around in a state of perpetual insomnia. You forget your friends; you just have NO time for any of them at this point in time. And you forget how to do your job because your entire world is sent into an upheaval that you just weren’t ready for.
Know what else gets forgotten? The family pet.
That’s right, once the baby is born, you might as well open the door and let it out to be eaten by wolves, because otherwise you’re letting it die a slow, painful, death of loneliness. My daughter is only a few months old and most days I forget that we even HAVE a cat, much less remember to do the things you’re supposed to for it. I’m pretty sure the litter box is a petrified brick at this point, but I’m not going into the basement to find out. It’s gone days without eating because you just forget to put food in the bowl. The other day there was a bug floating in the water dish, neither of us bothered to refill it for a couple days. Whatever. Don’t give me that face, there are diapers to change dammit!
The pet might as well be a coffee table, because even people who come to visit have ZERO interest in seeing it. Dog, cat, bird, horse, snake – it doesn’t matter. Your pet has no chance of ever recapturing the level of attention that it once had. And it’s sad really. When you don’t have kids, the pet is numero uno. When you have kids, they go from hero to zero in the blink of an eye. It always seems to be underfoot, in the way, pissing you off, or too close to the baby. “Christ get OUT of here!” is something you yell a lot when holding the baby while the pet is begging for attention. If you could boot it and get away with it, you would.
So a piece of advice if you’re expecting. Get rid of the pet now; it’ll be easier and you’ll thank me for it two months after your child is born. You will have saved the animal its dignity, and yourself a lot of swearing and headaches.