The Best Ways to Introduce a Dog to a Cat: Tips for Achieving Successful Fur Friendship
How to Introduce a Dog to a Cat
It’s false lore that dogs and cats don’t make such happy couples, since dogs and cats can, in fact, get along! Of course, you will need to be patient about how you first introduce a dog to a cat. Giving each of them sufficient time to get accustomed to the new situation is key to achieving a positive outcome.
Most dogs are tolerant around kittens brought home, especially if they were socialized as puppies. However, it’s recommended to keep an eye on the two until you are certain their relationship is evolving in the right direction. To make sure your fur family enjoys success, here’s what you can do to make things work.
Never let them sort out the relationship on their own
Left unsupervised and without control from your side, things between dogs and cats who are unfamiliar with one another can get ugly. Cats can scratch dogs and the dogs can attack cats if either of them feels fearful or suspicious.
Plan the introductions and be patient
As a responsible pet owner, we highly recommend supervising this process from start to finish. If you know that you’ll have to be away from home during the day, it is best to keep the two separated, so they won’t potentially hurt each other while you’re gone.
Plan so that the introductions are made in your presence only. Just as well, make sure that you and the animals are in a calm state. Don’t push any of them. When you introduce a dog to a cat, let them decide when it feels comfortable to take one step closer. Some dogs breeds, like the Pomeranian, demonstrate a gentle temperament when meeting new fur friends. Watch for signs that may indicate aggressiveness or irritation. You may have to intervene before anything bad happens.
Another tip: pick a quiet, spacious room in your house where the cat can stay during the accommodation period. This way, you provide your little feline the comforts of feeling safe and the chance to get used to the smells and sounds made by the dog.
Your dog should be able to obey you
If you have a mature dog and want to bring in a cat, make sure the dog will listen to your commands first. This way, you know you’ll be able to control them in case an aggressive situation arises.
Keep the environment safe and comfortable
To make things safe, keep the dog on a leash in the presence of the cat. This way, you can act promptly if the dog jumps on the cat. Additionally, make sure the cat has an escape route, in case things no longer feel comfortable for them.
When you introduce a dog to a cat, understand that they may not like each other immediately. While they can eventually become friends, the accommodation period can take up to several weeks. Be patient and let them get accustomed to each other in their own rhythm. Although it can be sometimes frustrating, bear in mind that you will soon obtain the desired results!