Here are four common mistakes you don't want to make when introducing cats and dogs:
Although the stereotype is that dogs and cats are sworn enemies, many dogs and cats can happily live together. Some can even be friends! In this blog, we will help you learn how to properly introduce your dog and cats, and how to ensure they have a lasting relationship.
When introducing a dog and cat, you need to be aware that they will need time to know each other. Dogs who are gentle and do not like to chase small animals will be easier to introduce, but even predatory dogs can learn not to chase cats. The cat will also likely take while to accept the new dog since cats are usually less friendly and more independent. Your cat will be more likely to accept a smaller, calmer dog, but can also learn to accept any type of dog.
Introducing Dogs to Cats - YouTube
Introducing Dogs to Cats | Animal Rescue Fund of the Hamptons
The more you know about the animals you are about to introduce the better prepared you will be. When you are walking your dog on lead, does he show an unhealthy interest in neighborhood cats? Does he tolerate cats that jump into the back yard or charge after them with aggressive intent? Has your cat been around dogs before? How has she reacted? Does she hiss and spit when she sees dogs walk by the front window?Introducing dogs and cats for the first time Begin with the dog securely on leash and 5-6 feet away from the cat. Watch the body language of both the cat and dog. It would be helpful to have a second person present to monitor the behavior of the cat. If the cat’s back arches up, if he hisses or emits a low growl, his tail begins to swish, and/or ears are pinned back then slowly move the dog away from the cat. The cat is not happy with the presence of the dog and may lunge at the dog. The goal is for all encounters to be positive. If the dog’s hair on the nape of his neck and along his back goes up (indicating arousal, not necessarily aggression), if he barks or whines, and/or his body stiffens and his gaze fixates on the cat then try to redirect his focus onto you by either asking him to sit, engaging him in play, or by offering him a treat. If he cannot shift his focus from the cat, then move the dog away from the cat. His excitement may be playful in nature, but may also be aggressive. Both pets may need to be desensitized to each other (see next section) if these reactions continue. In both cases move the pets away from each other and try again later. On the other hand, if the dog is calm, and his body appears loose and relaxed in the presence of the cat, and the cat is relaxed, then allow the cat to explore freely around the dog (still on leash). Reward the dog for good behavior by either giving him treats or praise, and reward the cat with treats.Once your cat is familiar with her escape routes, which could take days or even weeks, you are ready to introduce your dog. In the meantime, take a clean towel to the home where the dog is currently living and rub him with the towel. Place that towel under your cat’s dinner bowl so that she becomes familiar with the dog’s scent. Rub the cat with a towel and put it under the dog’s bowl to familiarize him with the cat’s scent.It's true that many dogs and cats can coexist in peace. Here's how to begin the careful process of introducing dogs and cats so they will (hopefully) get along.