If you are taking on a new cat, a spare room is ideal as they will need time to adjust to their new surroundings. Consider cat trees or cat condos like the Hangin' Feline Funhouse or the Hangin' Cat Condo. How these introductions go will depend partly on the personality and temperament of your new cat. Reach Out and Rescue Resources. If you are bringing in a new dog, choose an area that you know your existing cat will feel safe. This is important because not only are their smells different, but cats and dogs use different body language that can take some time to get used to. If you see problems, and they don't abate with a few simple voice commands, back up to the previous phase for a few days. Some dogs are simply too dangerous to be around cats (occasionally the reverse is true). It may be helpful to look for a companion that has already been exposed to the other species in the past. Get to know your dog and cat well. After the cat has been sequestered for a few days, you can begin the introductions. Additionally, a dog who growls, lunge… Is she calm and social? Don't just go for a walk—change direction multiple times, speed up and slow down, or stop and sit multiple times. If you intend to introduce an adult dog to a cat, consult with a certified dog trainer or behaviorist. "How to Introduce a Dog and Cat." Keep the dog on a leash and allow the cat to roam around and venture as close to the dog as he or she wishes. If the dog is known to have a high prey instinct, he might not be a good choice for a home with cats. When introducing your dog to a cat, pay attention to the body language of both animals. Acclimating a dog and a cat to each other can take anywhere from a few weeks to several months. There's a lot you need to know to make things go smoothly with your new friend. Despite the cliché about fighting like cats and dogs, it's perfectly possible for the two species to live happily under one roof. If your gut is telling you that this isn't working out, respect that message. Indifference is good. Beforehand, exercise your dog and feed him a nice meal; put him in a relaxed mood. It is important to use caution and take time to ensure a smooth transition, especially in the case of introducing a dog and a cat. Introduce them indoors with the dog under control on a leash. Keep a comfy bed in the room for your kitty, like the Lazy Cup bed. When you finally let the dog wander free, make sure your cat has quick escape routes and watch them closely. Find out if the dog knows basic commands like sit, stay, and leave it alone. "Introducing Your New Dog to Your Resident Cat." At first, let them be in separate rooms so they can get used to the new scents without any additional pressure. Then allow the new dog to explore the rest of your home. Some cats might prefer an enclosed bed, like the Thermo-Kitty Sleephouse, to feel more secure. Introduce your dog to your cat slowly. Dogs and cats can usually live together peacefully, although creating a harmonious "blended family" requires some planning, patience, and careful guidance on your part. Keep kitty's litter box and food bowl out of your dog's reach. If you force your cat to share a room with a hyperactive and playful puppy, your cat may feel fearful and even threatened by this new creature. By using The Spruce Pets, you accept our, The 13 Best Christmas Gifts for Your Dog in 2021, How to Prepare Your Kitten for Its First Vet Visit, Here's What to Expect in the First 24 Hours With Your New Cat, What You Need to Know About Bathing Your Cat, Low Stress Travel to the Vet With Your Cat. Be patient and take the introduction process slowly, but know that whether or not your pets get along will also depend on their individual personalities. Keeping her mind engaged and active can increase your kitty's confidence. Unless the dog has a strong prey drive most will get along with a slow, controlled introduction. In the interim, keep dog and cat separated and give them both lots of love. If you're adopting an older dog, ask about his background. Use "sit-stay" or "down-stay" to keep the dog in place while Give the dog a soft blankie the cat has been sleeping on and vice versa. Keep your dog on the leash so you can grab him quickly if needed. Do not leave the cat and dog alone until you're sure they're both fully comfortable with each other and there will be no trouble. Of course, playing with your cat is important too. When you first bring the new cat home. The introduction process often takes time and patience, but is extremely important in establishing boundaries and behavior in the home. Make sure your cat has places she can jump to for safety. If he shows any signs of excessive excitability, calm him. Keeping her food elevated and out of the dog's reach is another good idea. Begin this process by allowing the two animals to become familiar with each other’s scent. It’s best to introduce the two of your pets on a sidewalk or in the yard if you have an inside pet. Use a head collar (halter) on your dog if there is a chance that you may not be in complete control of the situation. Let dog and cat check each other out at a distance. Once they're calmly eating while seeing each other, you can try supervised visits in a neutral room without a gate separating them. Is the dog good with cats or does he chase cats? Give your dog and cat some. Remember: a cat sitting still in your arms is not as entertaining as a cat bolting away from the dog. Follow these steps to maximize the chances of success. When introducing your puppy to a cat, try putting one pet in a confined room so they can smell each other under the door before meeting. For the safety of the cat in question, it’s best to have a professional assess the dog… That lets your furry companions get to know each other through smells. This article specifically is about introducing a new dog to a resident cat; a separate (though similar) article will talk about introducing a new cat to a family dog. Before you bring your new baby home, put the cat in a room complete with the litter box, food, water, toys, his bed or favorite blanket, and anything else he uses for comfort. Comments must be approved before appearing. Make sure that sh… If you see your dog lunge at your kitty, say "no" firmly and put him in a room alone. Gradually make the no-leash sessions longer. Put the cat in a crate and let the dog get used to it. If you don't have a crate, introduce them while your dog's on a short leash. Be very cautious with each step and watch your pets' interactions closely. Be able to interpret their. If the cat’s ears are pinned back or his tail is swishing back and forth, this is a good indicator that he is displeased. Finally, you want to provide a place in every room where she can get away from your dog quickly. Pet and talk to your dog soothingly. This will also help to tire your dog out, which will be beneficial for the initial introduction. All it takes is one shake and the cat’s neck can break. Be armed with lots of treats for good behavior. RSPCA. Animal Humane Society. Try clicker training or entice your cat to chase you around the house while you're holding a treat. Introduce your home. In dog language, a stare is a threat and may trigger the dog to act dominantly or aggressively. This may take longer depending on how confident your cat is. If a dog attempts to aggressively chase, pin, pick up or otherwise “manhandle” any cat, it is best to not even consider getting a cat — or at least to proceed with caution. 2 Touch one animal, then let the other smell the scent on you. Try to give your dog lots of activities that are more fun. It might take weeks to get to this point, and that's okay. Then introduce on a leash. Move all essentials to this area - a bed, food and water and a litter tray (even if you… If you are not 100% satisfied with your khpet.com purchase, we will gladly accept returns of merchandise within 60 days. When you're introducing a new dog to an older cat, you'll want to plan their introduction carefully. To keep your home a peaceable kingdom, you'll want to arm yourself with some know-how before introducing a new dog to your resident feline. Here's how to introduce dogs to cats in the right way. Keep your dog confined until the cat feels secure in his new home. If you give everyone their own space and introduce them slowly, your dog and cat will likely learn to … The introduction process should be very gradual, over a couple of days to weeks at the very least. Wondering how to introduce your new cat to your resident dog? You need to give the cat time to explore the home and smell your dog without the dog being present. Because your dog has been living in your home, he is used to the environment and it smells like him. Some experts recommend keeping your dog in a crate at first and letting your cat wander around the room while you praise them both and give them treats.4 Separate them if the dog's too excited. Here’s how to introduce a cat to a dog (and keep the peace in the house)! When you first bring the cat into the house, it's best to have the dog either locked away or out of the home. Put your cat in her carrier if she's a scaredy-cat by nature; otherwise let her walk around. Tell children not to look a dog directly in the eye. Once your dog and cat consistently get along during leashed visits, you're ready for the next step. Your new cat or kitten will need several days to adjust to its new home, so limit your child’s interaction to gentle petting, and only when the cat … Although you think your cat gets along with everyone and everything, it is by nature of both of the animals that you will have to gradually acquaint both the cat and the dog. The humane thing to do in this case is contact the shelter or breeder so that you can find a good cat-free home for the dog. Introduce your cat to your dog immediately. Take at least a day to … Let the cat move freely around the room as they smell the area. Try feeding them on either side of a closed screen or gate. Calm, confident cats are more likely to accept a new dog. An important step when introducing dogs to cats is to give your cat a safe space where she can retreat.2 This can be a room with a cat door that's too small for the dog or a baby gate that your cat can jump over but the dog cannot. Some dogs have such a high prey drive they should never be left alone with a cat. Your dog has an aggressive or predatory nature. This can lead to your cat lashing out at the dog, leading to injuries on both sides. Personality can play a big role in whether a dog will do well in a cat home.1 First, consider your cat's personality. Do this by placing your cat in a safe, comfortable room alone. With patience and time, your fur babies will soon become lifelong friends. Move the new cat to a small room, e.g., a spare bathroom and open the cage. 2. If the dog is calm with the introduction, ask them to sit or stay. Dogs usually want to chase and play with cats, and cats usually become afraid and defensive. During this period your cat and dog should be kept separate. Use cat doors or baby gates if practical, as well as gentle discipline and rewards to enforce the rules. When you are ready to introduce your cat to your dog, make the initial meeting a quick one—approximately ten minutes. You’ll need to decide where and how to let them have those important first interactions. Learn more about dogs, cats, chickens and small animals on our blog and sign up for to be the first to hear about new products, discount deals, company news and more! If you have a resident cat and are thinking of bringing a new puppy home, it’s normal to be concerned about how she will react. Introducing a dog to a cat home takes time, love, and patience. He'll likely be nervous at first, but you'll notice him becoming more comfortable with a little time. Cats and kittens. Fawcett, Kirstin. Though they're sharing your home, male sure that they're confined to their own spaces at first. Don’t introduce a cat to a dog in their territory Animals can be very territorial, especially if they haven’t been spayed or neutered. Let the cat have a significant amount of time to explore. Despite the stereotype, many dogs and cats learn to live together peacefully. A dog that never chases a cat inside the home might obsessively chase your kitty when they're outside together. Use the techniques described above to … Introducing a dog to a cat’s home is deemed as a process at all times. Scent Intro. Try high-intensity jogs, lure coursing, and scent training. Whether you are introducing a new cat to your resident dog or vice versa, you will need to provide a safe area for the cat that your dog will not be able to access. This is the HTML version of one of our former Shelter Sheets, which were designed to be downloaded and printed for handout by Humane Societies, Animal Shelters, Rescue Groups, and others involved in re-homing cats. It's not time for dog to approach cat just yet. Make some private space in your home for each animal. When you bring your cat home, you may need to make a few introductions to other cats, dogs, or children who live in the house. Introducing new pets to one another can be exciting yet stressful. Remember, your home was the cat's first and her needs and boundaries should be respected. In some cases your dog and cat will become best friends. Your current cats will be naturally curious about a new smell in a closed room. Things to Note Before Introducing a Puppy to a Cat Patience is going to play a key role in this. Getting out that extra energy can help your dog be calmer around your cat. You never want to let your dog chase your cat—even once—as this can start a habit that's very hard to break. New cat to resident dog. If you want to, and have previously visited the puppy, put a blanket in with the cat with his scent on it. 1. Some cats will be completely comfortable right off the bat acting as if they own the place the minute they step in the door. Does she try to greet guests or does she hide when the doorbell rings? AnimalHumaneSociety.org. The introduction is key, even if the dog chases other cats he needs to know that this is his cat and off-limits. Go over those commands before you bring your new dog home. If the cat seems calm when the dog's near the door and the dog doesn't alert to the cat's smell, you can start to introduce them to each other visually. Keep the cat in one room where your dog is not allowed. Do not allow the dog to chase or corner the cat, even out of playfulness or curiosity. Are you thinking of bringing a dog into a house with a cat already present or vice versa? The EZ Mount Up & Away Diner attaches to a window allowing your cat to eat peacefully away from your dog. When they're together, work on redirecting your dog's attention. Once you learn how to introduce dogs to cats, you'll find it's quite easy for a dog and cat to learn to be friends. This allows them to sniff one another without immediately bringing up territorial or protective disputes. Remember, your home was the cat's first and her needs and boundaries should be respected. "How Should I Introduce My New Dog or Puppy to the Family Cat?" Especially with pets, first impressions matter. Mental Floss, 1 December 2017. Take your dog off the leash, and supervise the two closely. But, if your pooch starts lunging towards the feline at first glance, then it might be better for you to try a different strategy. Introducing a dog to a cat home takes time, love, and patience. Repeat these short visits several times a day, gradually giving your dog more leash as appropriate. Make sure you use it with a window perch. Introduce your cat and dog by scent and sound first, rewarding them for calm behavior in the presence of each other. Keep the visits short, praise your pets, and give them treats for staying calm. If he starts to fixate on your cat, tell him to "come" or "leave it." Do not proceed with the introduction until you have completed the steps in this section. Do not move to the next phase until you have several consecutive days of incident-free visits in which both animals demonstrate to your satisfaction that they are comfortable with each other. You particularly want to be aware of dog body language that could be potential warning signs. When introducing your puppy to a dog, try to have them meet outside while both are leashed. Allow the animals to see one another, but do not let the dog chase the cat, even in play. Put your dog on a short leash or. You should also know how to blend mild discipline and positive redirection to gently influence your cat's behavior. https://www.thesprucepets.com/introduce-new-dog-to-cats-552004 If you’re thinking of getting a cat for your dog or a dog for your cat, it’s important to consider both animals’ personalities. Allow at least one to two days for your cat to settle in before introducing them to your dog. Your cat might growl or hiss, but this will likely diminish over time. Of course, your new dog's personality is very important too. Introducing a puppy to a cat involves planning and preparation. Sometimes, despite your best efforts, it wasn't meant to be. The Spruce Pets uses cookies to provide you with a great user experience. You will have better chance of success if your dog is a puppy. Just make sure to take things slowly when you introduce a dog to a cat home. RSPCA.org.au, Outdoor Heated Cat Beds, Cat Houses, Water Bowls, never want to let your dog chase your cat, https://www.mentalfloss.com/article/516438/8-tricks-help-your-cat-and-dog-get-along, https://www.reachoutrescue.org/info/display?PageID=10478, https://www.animalhumanesociety.org/behavior/how-introduce-dog-and-cat, https://kb.rspca.org.au/knowledge-base/how-should-i-introduce-my-new-dog-or-puppy-to-the-family-cat/. The Foster Dog and your Dog. Don't forget that behavior indoors can be very different when the pets move outside. After the walk, keep your dog on the leash for a proper introduction to the new … An aggressive dog can seriously injure or kill a cat. Some dogs unfortunately will be too dangerous for your cat, and one of the most important points of this article is that you need to recognize when this is the case. It is normal for a dog to attempt to chase any animal if it runs; this can be discouraged with training. Put the cat's litter in a place the dog can't go, so she won't ever be cornered. If this doesn't do the trick, cut the visit short and try again later. Swap their blankets and feed them on either side of a closed door.3 You can also swap rooms sometimes, letting each pet have a chance to roam through the home. Even if a dog and cat seems to love one another, this kind of violation can spark bad (and even dangerous) behavior. How to introduce your new dog or cat to your existing pets: Prepare your home: Even non-territorial dogs and cats can feel like their “home turf” has been invaded when a new pet is thrown into the mix. Allowing them time to adjust to each others' scents within your home will help them get used to each other. Puppies that grow up with cats are more likely to view them as friends, but older dogs might need a little training. A puppy who grows up with a cat is likely to see the cat as part of the pack. Put the dog on leash and open the door to the room. Start by keeping the animals apart. If your dog bolts toward your cat, correct him with the leash. Send him for a walk with another member of your family. Take your dog to the shelter and introduce … ReachOutRescue.org. Your complete satisfaction matters to us. If you give everyone their own space and introduce them slowly, your dog and cat will likely learn to get along and eventually become friends. One big issue can be a dog with a high prey drive that tries to chase cats. Praise him with treats when he obeys, and reward him for calm behavior too. This way the dog won't jump around the pet carrier and scare the cat as you bring it into the home for the first time. Supervise them carefully and don’t tolerate any aggressive behavior from your dog. Dogs that get lots of exercise are less likely to want to chase a cat. "8 Tricks to Help Your Cat and Dog to Get Along."