Can cats and dogs get along? Yes, they can, just as long as you use the proper guide to introduce your cat to your dog. It’s important to help them build a good relationship especially when they’re going to live under one roof. Here is a list of things to keep in mind when introducing them to each other for the first time:
Separate them from each other for awhile
When bringing a new pet back home for the first time, you must always keep it separated from your pets at home. Give it a couple of days to adjust to its new surrounding in order to not stress it out. Spend quality time with it too and give it a lot of attention during this time.
When bringing home a new dog, make sure you have it placed in a separate place in the house. This is also a good time to train your new cat or dog about potty training. Provide it with its own personal space; for example, a bed.
Although both animals are kept separately, they are able to smell each other’s scents, which also means that they are aware of each other’s presence. Analyse your new pet’s behaviour. If it is eating, sleeping and using the litter box well, you can start introducing it to your long-time furry friend.
It would be great also if you could install a cat door for your cat.
Make the first meeting quick
Now let’s move on to the most exciting session — introducing your new pet cat to your dog. This session should be a quick one and should not last more than 10 minutes.
During this process, allow your cat to roam around the house freely, whilst having your dog on a lead. Let your cat get close to your dog too, and if necessary, use a head collar. Upon successful session, reward your dog with treats and compliment it for its good behaviour. That way your dog will know that it is doing the right thing.
Do this for a couple of times until your dog and your new cat can get along together. Once they both feel comfortable around each other, allow them to interact with each other freely, but with your dog still attached to its lead. This process may take several weeks or even months, so be patient before you are able to achieve the result you’re hoping for.
Analyse your pet’s personality and behaviours
As mentioned earlier, cats and dogs can get along together. Since no one else knows your dog better than you do, you can predict your dog’s behaviour or reactions based on its personality.
As for your new cat, if it has lived with other animals before, the process would be an easy one. But if it’s just a kitty, you will need to spend quality time with it in order to make sure that it feels safe and confident around your dog.
If your dog is the friendly and easy-going type, it won’t be long until your cat feels welcomed and comfortable around it. But if your dog is aggressive, it’s best to consult your veterinarian.
To make sure that your cat feels safe upon its early meetings with your dog, have it standing or sitting on a higher surface whilst your dog held with a lead.
Keep an eye on them
Likewise, don’t leave your cat alone with your dog. At least not until they can be trusted to be left alone together. Dogs can be rough when playing, so it can be dangerous for your cat. Such situation is what you need to avoid and for safety reasons, provide your cat with a high place to climb and run to in case it needs to escape from your dog.
There are cat trees sold online that you can purchase for your cat. Get one for it. This should be a safe hideout for your cat.
Do you have anything else you’d like to add to our list? Your suggestions are always welcomed! 🙂