Jan 12 2010


As a parent, it is really hard to resist your kids when they give you that "Ahhhh mommy or daddy" look! You know the one...The one that just melts your heart. Well my little girl Charin got me this weekend when we were at the pet store. We lost our favorite cat ever a few months back, and have been heart broken! So while we were there, we adopted a cat. She is beautiful and sweet!... BUT we have a dog, and now here's where I need your help!


How do you get them used to one another?  Is there a right way to do it?  Is there a special formula?

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1/3/2010 9:09:21 PM
Ingrid United States
What we usually do with new pets when there is already one in the house is; we give the old pet the new one like a new toy. Any time the new pet makes a noise or does something we ask the old pet what is wrong and give the old pet more attention. So far this has worked very well with all our new "babies".
1/4/2010 3:52:46 AM
Terri Johnston United States
Terri Johnston
Any time you bring in a new pet its best to try and introduce them by having someone hold the original pet and just let it smell the other one. There will be some resistance which is fine but then release the new pet in the home and it will take cover. Give it a few days to get used to the new enviroment then it will warm up on its own. It usually takes a cat a few days then you will start to see them interact and get close to the dog. Your dog had been around the other cat you had so I dont see a real issue here.
Good Luck
1/4/2010 5:34:20 AM
Marsha United States
I just throw em right in. They will eventually get used to one another. Just don't forget that they both need the same amount of attention. Don't give the new pet more attention or the old pet will start to have issues (not pretty).
1/4/2010 6:26:59 AM
Amanda United States
hi I was just listening to u talk about the cat u adopted and the best way to introduce them is to take it slow, let them sniff eachother and be around eachother but don't force them. it normally takes about a week for them to start getting used to eachother. hope I helped! =) also I'm sure if u google there is tons more better advice lol but from personal experience. I have 12 cats! lol
1/4/2010 6:35:26 AM
james harvey United States
james harvey
one thing you could try to get the cat used to the dogs is spray the dog with cat nip spray. i have used this in the past and it seems to work mutiple times with my pets.
1/4/2010 7:39:00 AM
Melodie United States
I have two dogs and a cat.  All of them adopted...all of them with issues.  My cat lived with some crazy lady that had 600 cats.  It was suppose to be a rescue place, but the cats were in horrible condition.  Jack the cat had ear mites, and his teeth were infected.  He had to have 7 teeth taken out. My advice is to let the cat decide when to be friendly with the dogs.  I learned to let my cat put up the boundries.  It took a few months, because my dog is overly friendly, but eventually they are all friends.  My boyfriend thought it was a miracle (so did I) because cassie the dog is so overwelming and scared Jack the cat at first.  The cat was under the bed in the back bedroom and my boyfriend was gone.  When he came home cassie was barking at the cat trying to get to him under the bed.  It took him a month to come out of that room.  He started rubbing on Cassie and then tried to play with her, but it all took time. Everytime I move my cat I have to let him do everything at his own pace.  I allow him to hide.  I also have a nice tall climbing tree.  The climbing tree is higher than any of the dogs can reach.  He can get up on that and get away from them.  But it is out in the living room, so he is still around everyone. I moved my cat back in with me a couple of months ago.  He hissed and tried to scratch at my roommates dog, who is 10 pounds of energy.  The dog didn't seem to know what hissing was.  After a few weeks Jack the cat was playing with Roxy the dog.  Now they are BFF's.  They play alll the time. Its so funny!  They wrestle all the time!One piece of advice, keep the cats food higher than the dog.  
1/4/2010 7:58:22 AM
Alison Petro United States
Alison Petro
I have had many cats, dogs, rodents, and reptiles over the years and for the most part they all get along.  Just like the kids know you're the boss and they have to play nice because you say so the animals need to know the same.
1/4/2010 9:27:30 AM
Casey United States
I have a story for you' Scott!
While at my grandma's house over the holidays, we had to bring our pets along, including my anti-social cat.
However I was worried because Grandma has a miniature pinscher who kills most things she finds in the yard and bites when annoyed.
So to resolve the issue grandma decided to tie them both to a chair! Believe it or not, by the end of the day they were lying side by side. They got along perfectly the whole week!

Now we have a hyper golden puppy who loves to bug old man Kitty.
This cat who used to run from the sound of barking now swats the dog when he walks past and competes for attention! His attitude has totally changed and he is much more outgoing. Kitty doesn't run anymore and holds his ground. When they do have spats, they're really just poking at each-other like siblings.
So just give them a while, chances are they'll get used to each other. They may not get along 24/7 but not all kids do!
Good luck!
1/4/2010 2:52:04 PM
Carissa United States
Hi Scott and Kelli!

I have a 7lb cat and a 90lb working line German Shepherd Dog who just turned two (which means energy, energy, energy and DRIVE, DRIVE, DRIVE!) I can tell you what works for us now, and also what worked to get our highly predatory hunting lab to accept the cat as part of the household.

First, don't force introductions! I have scars from where my cat sunk all four fangs into my forearm when our lab basically tried to eat her upon being introduced.

Second, give the cat a safe place to be. Keep her in one room of the house for now so that she can slowly acclimate--give her a few days to get used to the dog noises, house noises, etc.

Next, if you have a baby gate, use it to gate off the hallway to whichever room she is in so that she can begin to explore the hallway and her current area without the dog interfering. This will also give your dog a chance to look at her without getting to her. Lavishly reward quiet behavior on the dog's part when seeing the cat. Basically, you want your dog to think that whenever the cat appears, he gets wonderful yummy treats.

Now, making introductions: Crate the dog in the living room and allow the cat to come into the room and explore at will. She may go up to the dog, she may not. As soon as she appears, feed the dog good treats through the crate, and then reward calm, quiet behavior (it may simply be a pause between barks, but mark it and reward it anyway! Our lab was soon going into the crate on his own so that I would bring kitty out to explore so he could get some good treats!) Or, if you don't have a crate, put up a baby gate so the dog is gated in the kitchen. Allow the cat to come and sniff him on her own time, and lavishly reward good behavior on your dog's part. What might work best is if one person stands by the baby gate with yummy treats (something with much higher value than dried dog food! Can be cut up into numerous small pieces about the size of a pinky fingernail), and then as soon as the cat comes into the room start dropping treats by the dog. One here, a few there. When the cat leaves, the treats stop. If the cat comes back, the dog gets more treats. Once the dog gets the idea that cat = treats (he should start looking around hungrily for treats or offering good eye contact to you when he sees the cat), start rewarding randomly, and preferentially reward the behaviors you like to see (such as sitting there calmly, or laying down when the cat is nearby, or offering eye contact instead of staring at the cat).

When the cat and dog are more comfortable, move to having the dog on lead in the living room, and a baby gate up in the hallway so the cat can easily escape the dog if need be (I kept the baby gate up for the first year I had my German Shepherd, just so the cat could have a safe place at all times. I only had to correct him once for trying to climb over the gate, and that was it.). Reward the dog for displaying the desired behaviors, but you may have to back up a little bit at first and start with rewarding him as soon as the cat shows up at the baby gate. Eventually, you should be able to have the gate up and both animals loose on either side. At this point, if the cat jumps over with the loose dog there, just be prepared for whatever may happen. Correct any chasing on the dog's part right away, even if it simply is to chase her back over the gate (I kept a light line on my dog's collar so I could do this immediately). Reward appropriate behavior right away. Make sure that cat has a dog-free perch in the living room so that she can escape his reach by jumping up there--it definitely helps!

Hope all this helps! Good luck! Don't rush things. I will tell you that even after two years my German Shepherd Dog will still bother the cat when he has too much energy (which is what he is doing now...). So before you even start introductions, take the dog out for a nice long walk and get rid of that energy. Do this before any training sessions with the cat, because it will make things easier! Smile
1/5/2010 12:33:47 AM
Bethany United States
My husband and I have 2 cats and recently added a puppy to the mix. To get them used to each other, allow the pets to interact for small periods of time while supervised by the family. When supervision is not available, keep the new pet in a separate room. Gradually increase the amount of time the pets spend together over the first several days. Be sure to provide your first love with extra attention so he/she doesn't feel left out.
1/6/2010 10:14:28 AM
Glennis United States
Scott, I think Sister Carissa has a great concept, but I'll still offer to bring Splash down to give your Chug a lesson in Kitty Manners. Splash has claws of lightning steel...whap-whap-whap! Poor Chug wouldn't know what hit him, but Splash would be dancing around looking adorably elegant, waiting for a lap to open up...
Best of luck with this one!
1/6/2010 11:28:34 AM
Sonia Cuellar United States
Sonia Cuellar
I live in a house that had two dogs when I moved in. A month or so later I got two kittens and brought them to the house. One of the dogs acted all hyper and excited like you describe yours. What I did was first crated the dog and let the kittens roam around. Then I put the kitties in the dog crate and let the dog sniff them while they got her scent in the crate. After I introduced them formerly having my roommate hold the dog still while I held the kittens up to her. They were touch and go for a few days, but we just let it play out and now they're great friends Smile
1/13/2010 5:02:28 AM
Jack United States
I normaly put them in the same room for short amounts of time untill there used to each other.
1/16/2010 6:13:06 AM
Falco United States
Wow, no offense, but I feel bad for the poor helpless cat!!
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