Some of you human folk like cats. Some even have cats. And, some have cats and dogs. Carin’ for a multi-species fur-family offers challenges but is worth it if you must. I know I know, dogs are the best, and some of my canine friends will be surprised to hear me say it, but I have cat friends. It’s true! My cat friends are good feline people and worth knowin’, but they are a might different from us canines.
When introducin’ cats to us dogs, human folk need to be safe and aware of individual personalities. For example, I’m curious and a bit out goin’, so a bossy cat won’t bother me none. My sisters Salllie and Maggie seem to like em a bit too. But, my sister Little Bit is very shy, so cats scare her. And then there’s Seager, Brandy and Ozzy who would probably eat a cat. My Lady shouldn’t, and won’t, add a cat to the family. My borther and sister’s are good pups and all, but they see cats as prey and a good hunt. There’s nothin’ wrong with livin’ their instincts, but Im afraid there would never be any peace ’round here!
Here’s some tips for dogs and cats living together:
Know your dog
If my Lady ever did get a cat, safety for Little Bit, at only 5 lbs, would be the focus. But with the bigger dogs, who can easily hurt a cat or have em for lunch WOOF (again, not recommendin’ or endorsing this practice) need to have introductions done with care and the cat’s safety the first priority.
When introducin’ dogs to one another, neutral territory like a park is important. This is not the case with introducin’ cats. The safest practice is to put the cat in a carrier where he or she is safe, and let your dog sniff at the cat. This way, the cat can feel safe and get in sniffs and hisses as well. Flyin’ claws on either side will cause no harm to human or fur family members.
In the beginnin’ of addin’ a feline friend to the family, keep our food and water bowls in different rooms, so we can eat in peace. And be sure the litter box is out of reach, or some of my dog friends will do unacceptable things I will not dignify with words!
After a period of time with the animals protected from one another, the human can get help and each person hold one animal while they touch noses without a crate in between. If this goes well, then releasin’ one of us is the next step. Gently discourage any growlin’ or hissin’. If your dog is like me and super friendly and awesome, you might even get to put the cat on the floor for me to lick and make friends with! 🙂
You’re in charge
Finally, if you expect us to get along, be sure to demonstrate that when correctin’ our interactions and behavior. We will follow you as the pack leader, although cats can be goofy about your alpha status. They seem to think they are boss ever where. WOOF! Dogs and cats living together isn’t impossible. In the end, we all just wanna be a happy family too.