Many animal-loving families have
more than one species living in their homes, but putting dogs and cats
together can sometimes be a challenge.
CATS are naturally independent and are predators that
pounce and dart at “prey” and can be seen as a challenge to the dog.
DOGS are pack animals. Some are bred to hunt, guard or
retrieve game and can have a strong prey drive, meaning they instinctively
chase fast-moving and furry creatures such as cats.
If you have a dog and are considering adding a cat to your
household, think about the following:
• The specific character of your
breed: Purebred dogs are generally predictable. For example, Instinctively
a hearing guard dog, his bearing is alert, dignified, and self-assured.
Read about the boxer breed in detail on the here.
• The individual personality and
temperament of each dog: Laid-back dogs should co-exist or get along better
with cats than more active, assertive dogs.
• Age: Dogs and cats usually get
along better when they are introduced at an early age, ideally within the
first two-three months of life.
When introducing dogs and cats in the same home:
• Keep the two separated for the
first several days.
• Let them walk around the house
one at a time to allow them to get to know the other’s scent.
• Let your cat in the room with
the dog to explore while the dog is crated. Then do the same with the dog
on a short leash in a sit-stay. Praise your dog when he is calm, friendly
and focused on you.
• Keep the two animals under
complete supervision in controlled situations.
• Teach dogs that cats are
off-limits by introducing the “LEAVE IT!” command. When the dog makes any
movement toward the cat, tell him to “Leave it,” and praise him when his
attention returns to you.
• Give both animals extra treats
and attention when they are together so they associate the other with good
things, not punishment.
• Keep the cat’s litter box and
feeding areas out of reach of the family dogs.
Take your time and be patient. Some dogs and cats may never be
best friends, but they can live together!