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Introducing my cat to a dog and cat

mbeth426
January 29th, 2006, 03:10 PM
Hi, I'm new, and I was looking for some suggestions. Hopefully some of you may have some for me. :) Sorry, this is going to be a rather long post, so bare with me. ;)

Ok, here's the background story. My male cat, Calvin, is 1 year old and neutered. I brought him home as a kitten (adopted him from an animal shelter), and he lives with a 10 year old female German Shepherd, and a cockateil. Now, the German Shepherd is VERY timid and shy. She really never bothered Calvin whatsoever. In fact, Calvin would sleep with her and kneed her as if she was his mother when he was a kitten.

My friend has a condo, and we were hoping I'd be able to move in with her soon. She has a 8 year old female Husky and a newly aquired female kitten (not fixed). Her Husky and kitten are much more hyper and playful than the German Shepherd Calvin is used to.

Now, we're up to current. My friend went to AZ for 11 days and I'm staying at her condo to look after her pets. I also brought Calvin with me, to hopefully have the animals get used to each other. I'm not planning to move in relatively soon, so I'm wondering if that I even succeed, will I have to go through this all over again when I do move in and this is all pointless to begin with? I was thinking that they might remember each other if they end up getting along, but I'm not sure how that all works with animals....

Anyway, I tried introducing him right away, and her dog chased him around and my cat growled, hissed, and moaned. He's never hissed or growled before, and he even growled at me. :sad: I have a separate room where I keep him while I'm sleeping or at work. But the dog seems to be really obsessed with my cat, she will stand outside the door and whine while the cat is locked up. She will lay in front of the door too. I've been bringing my cat out and leaving him in his carrier for a bit to let them get used to each other that way, because that's what I've read is best to do. The dog will approach the carrier and sniff the cat, and continuously whine and howl a bit. The cat will hiss and growl (which I read is normal). While this is going on, her kitten seems to be unphased and not even care about the cat.

Right now the cat is in a carrier on a table, and the dog finally calmed down and is laying on the floor right next to the table. The cat is not growling or hissing. But when I take the cat out, the dog gets overly excited and starts chasing my cat, and my cat runs and hides in the corner. The dog will stand by the corner, and not let the cat go anywhere. I even tried letting my cat out with the dog and kitten locked up, so he could explore the new environment by himself, but whenever the dog would whine from being locked up, the cat would run in the corner and hide again, just from hearing the dog whine in the other room.

The dog doesn't seem to have the intent to hurt the cat, but wants to smell him and play (she tries to bite him playfully, like she does when playing with the kitten). But my cat is not used to that type of play, because the German Shepherd never played like that.

I'm not sure if this may be a lost cause or what. It's only been 2 days, and I know this takes time, but I feel bad keeping my cat locked up a lot. I also feel like that the dog is scaring him so much, that he may get traumatized from it. He's a very sweet cat, and I don't want his personality to change. :(

Does anyone have any suggestions on how to do this a better way? Should I just be persistent? If I let the cat out, and when the dog chases him in a corner, I usually retrieve him and put him back in the room where he'll feel safe and secure. Should I not do that? Should I just leave him be for a bit? The dog doesn't seem to leave him alone though, so the cat doesn't even have a chance to go somewhere else.

And after 10 more days, I'm going back home with my cat....so I'm wondering if I should even be doing this to begin with....

Thanks for reading my loooooooong post. :o I appreciate any advice or suggestions you may have! :pawprint:

chico2
January 29th, 2006, 04:00 PM
Someone might be able to give you better advice,but I would not move in there,I love my cats too much,to have them chased by a dog,unless this dog is obedient and listens to you.
Moving is stressful enough for a cat,much less moving in with a dog who chases them:sad:
Would you also take your German Shepard with you?
Unless it is absolutely necessary that you move I would not,but that's only my opinion.

mbeth426
January 29th, 2006, 06:15 PM
Someone might be able to give you better advice,but I would not move in there,I love my cats too much,to have them chased by a dog,unless this dog is obedient and listens to you.
Moving is stressful enough for a cat,much less moving in with a dog who chases them:sad:
Would you also take your German Shepard with you?
Unless it is absolutely necessary that you move I would not,but that's only my opinion.


Well, the thing is my friend is getting a really good deal on the condo. Her friend owns it, so she's giving her cheap rent. So, I'd be paying $225 for rent if I moved in with her. There's no way I'll find ANYTHING that cheap, and I really can't afford much more than that. :/ My job doesn't pay that well, but I'm happy with my job so I don't want to look for a new one. So this is like my only opportunity.

And no, the German Shepherd would not be coming with me. She belongs to my parents.

Lucky Rescue
January 29th, 2006, 06:23 PM
Anyway, I tried introducing him right away, and her dog chased him around and my cat growled, hissed, and moaned. He's never hissed or growled before, and he even growled at me

Your cat growled at your because he was terrified and stressed. You must do introductions very slowly.

I've been bringing my cat out and leaving him in his carrier for a bit to let them get used to each other that way, because that's what I've read is best to do. The dog will approach the carrier and sniff the cat, and continuously whine and howl a bit. The cat will hiss and growl (which I read is normal).

Never do this. The cat knows it's trapped and unable to escape the dog, since a cat doesn't know it's safe in a carrier. Cats must know they have a safe place to go where a dog cannot reach them. This kind of introduction can very easily make the cat hate and fear the dog more than it would had it been done properly. You are going to severely traumatize your cat this way.

If I let the cat out, and when the dog chases him in a corner, I usually retrieve him and put him back in the room

The dog should NEVER be allowed to chase the cat at all. Of course the cat is frightened.

The dog needs to be taught to leave the cat alone. Huskies can be quite predatory so this is something that needs to be done ASAP.

mbeth426
January 30th, 2006, 05:37 AM
Never do this. The cat knows it's trapped and unable to escape the dog, since a cat doesn't know it's safe in a carrier. Cats must know they have a safe place to go where a dog cannot reach them. This kind of introduction can very easily make the cat hate and fear the dog more than it would had it been done properly. You are going to severely traumatize your cat this way.



The dog should NEVER be allowed to chase the cat at all. Of course the cat is frightened.

The dog needs to be taught to leave the cat alone. Huskies can be quite predatory so this is something that needs to be done ASAP.


Don't put him in the carrier? Really? A lot of sites I visited for tips on how to do this suggested doing that because the cat would feel more secure....

And of course when the dog chases the cat I yell at her and scold her. But I also can't get her to leave the cat alone. She'll just stand by where the cat is hiding and stare at the cat, and pace back and forth. If I tell her to sit, she'll sit for like a minute and get back up again. I don't think she was trained very well, whether it's the fault of my friend or her previous owners (she was adopted from an animal shelter).

I did see a tiny bit of progress yesterday. I held my cat in my arms, and let the dog sniff him. My cat didn't growl as much, but he was still scared (he had his claws digging into my shoulder for dear life the entire time! :eek: ) The dog was being nice for most of the time, just sniffing the cat, and even licked his face a couple times. But she still whined a lot. I also did see her try to nip at my cat's legs once or twice, which of course led my cat to hiss at her.

So, when I bring him out again, should I hold him again or should I just him go, and then yell at the dog when she chases him, and just let my cat hide for as long as he needs and keep the dog away from him? I also left the carrier in the living room to keep my cat's scent there, and let the dog sniff it and investigate it thoroughly.

Anymore suggestions?

mesaana
January 30th, 2006, 06:49 AM
Yell at the dog when she chases him???

No. No yelling. Do NOT let the dog chase the cat. Period. Put the dog on leash. Keep the leash attached to yourself. Correct if the dog tries to chase the cat. Don't yell. Yelling just excites the dog and stresses the cat. A quiet and firm "No!" is enough. And praise quietly if the dog behaves well when the cat is around. And as stated earlier, make sure your cat has a place to go where the dog has no access.

Good luck!

mbeth426
January 30th, 2006, 04:51 PM
Yell at the dog when she chases him???

No. No yelling. Do NOT let the dog chase the cat. Period. Put the dog on leash. Keep the leash attached to yourself. Correct if the dog tries to chase the cat. Don't yell. Yelling just excites the dog and stresses the cat. A quiet and firm "No!" is enough. And praise quietly if the dog behaves well when the cat is around. And as stated earlier, make sure your cat has a place to go where the dog has no access.

Good luck!

Erm...well how can I do this if I'm the only one here, I have to retrieve the cat from the locked room and keep the dog on the leash away from the cat? That's going to be difficult.....

And if I leave the door open and let the cat come out on his own, well, he may never come out. He'll just run and hide....and I'll be sitting here for hours holding the dog on the leash. :yuck:

I'll give it a shot though. At this point, I'll try anything.

Lucky Rescue
January 30th, 2006, 05:01 PM
Just holding the dog on leash isn't enough. He needs to be trained as well.

Here's how I taught foster dogs to leave my cats alone:

Dog on leash sees cat. Dog lunges. I correct, saying "NO CAT". Dog turns briefly to look at me. "GOOD DOG!!!" Treats, praise.

Dog learns: Leaving cat alone gets me good things. Lunging at cat gets me corrections. I think I'll leave cat alone.

The cat is now very frightened, after being caged with a dog sniffing and crying around him, so this could take quite some time for him to learn the dog won't be allowed to chase him.

mbeth426
January 31st, 2006, 05:36 AM
Just holding the dog on leash isn't enough. He needs to be trained as well.

Here's how I taught foster dogs to leave my cats alone:

Dog on leash sees cat. Dog lunges. I correct, saying "NO CAT". Dog turns briefly to look at me. "GOOD DOG!!!" Treats, praise.

Dog learns: Leaving cat alone gets me good things. Lunging at cat gets me corrections. I think I'll leave cat alone.

The cat is now very frightened, after being caged with a dog sniffing and crying around him, so this could take quite some time for him to learn the dog won't be allowed to chase him.

Her dog isn't very obedient, unfortunately. I have to tell her to sit so many times before she actually does it. I tried to bring the cat out last night with the dog on the leash. The cat kinda just stood there, and I let the dog slowly approach the cat, and then when the cat ran away, I didn't let the dog chase him and I said sternly "No." (but did not yell like you said). The cat ended up hiding under the bed for the next couple of hours with the kitten. They didn't fight under the bed, but they definitely kept their distance. I did not let the dog go into the room where the cat was hiding under the bed though. But she was very antsy about that. She kept pacing and whining every so often. I woke up this moring and the dog was laying right outside the room where my cat was locked up. My cat definitely doesn't seem nervous while in that room though. I heard him playing this morning. I guess that's a good thing?

CyberKitten
February 2nd, 2006, 09:44 PM
I hope I don;t sond blunt but why don't you just do it the proper way? There are many many seb sites with info on how to intropduce cats to dogs and vice versa. I am not sure how you will fix the situation now- your poor kitty must be terrified and traumatized. I know yoiu did not realuze you would lead to this but there is so much info out there - cats need to feel safe, especially when they are not in their home enviornment. Poor little girl was my first thought - put yourself in her place, She leaves her home (whoch cats HATE to do) and is brought to a place by the person she loves who lets (from her perspective) this large beast chase her and then she gets placed in her carrier which to her is the thing she goes in when she travels or goes ti the vet - not her safe place but one where she may be associate with scary place. You would be so scared now and not know what is coming next. And cats stress so easily and can become ill - I woudldalmsot say you need to get her out of there ASAP!!!! She may be playing but she is scared still - could you fiond a room where the cat can stay by herself.

Here is one page that suggests how to intridce cats and dogs but since this is just for a short period, I don't know - I have to say if it were my cat, I would have cared for the dog (esp one that is not very obedient - God knows what he may do to the cat if you are not watching 24/7) without bringing the cat -she would be just fine in her safe place - home where she is comfortable and not stressed!!! She is still not home and she will be stressed for some time now no matter what you do.

If you do want to try this - after you have given your kitty lots of care and time and maybe some time at her own home (or better still leave her there - this dog sounds like he should not be around her to be honest) - here is one site with some instructions but you need at least two weeks to do it properly! NEVER EVER introduce cats and dogs quickly like that - I know it occasionally works but that is atypical.

http://www.cuhumane.org/topics/catdog.html

Do you also know if this dog's vaccinations are up to date?

Another site says this and this may be what you might try - "Cats are very territorial and do not appreciate any change in their environment. Therefore, no matter what, this will be a stressful situation for your cat. Be sure your cat is mentally and physically healthy before introducing her to a dog. Ask a friend to bring the dog to your home. Be sure the dog is on a leash and under control at the time of arrival. Your friend can then turn the dog and leash over to you. If your cat does not run and hide, let her make the first advances toward the new dog. If the dog displays any inappropriate aggressive behavior toward the cat, he should be quickly and firmly corrected with a slight jerk on the leash and a verbal "NO." "

This dog has to think you are the leader as well and that needs to be established first BEFORE a cat enters the picture. My best advice is to bring your cat home - she will be so greatful to you - and much healthier for it! Even if she seems fine, this will traumaitize her!!

mbeth426
February 4th, 2006, 09:27 AM
I hope I don;t sond blunt but why don't you just do it the proper way? There are many many seb sites with info on how to intropduce cats to dogs and vice versa. I am not sure how you will fix the situation now- your poor kitty must be terrified and traumatized. I know yoiu did not realuze you would lead to this but there is so much info out there - cats need to feel safe, especially when they are not in their home enviornment. Poor little girl was my first thought - put yourself in her place, She leaves her home (whoch cats HATE to do) and is brought to a place by the person she loves who lets (from her perspective) this large beast chase her and then she gets placed in her carrier which to her is the thing she goes in when she travels or goes ti the vet - not her safe place but one where she may be associate with scary place. You would be so scared now and not know what is coming next. And cats stress so easily and can become ill - I woudldalmsot say you need to get her out of there ASAP!!!! She may be playing but she is scared still - could you fiond a room where the cat can stay by herself.

Here is one page that suggests how to intridce cats and dogs but since this is just for a short period, I don't know - I have to say if it were my cat, I would have cared for the dog (esp one that is not very obedient - God knows what he may do to the cat if you are not watching 24/7) without bringing the cat -she would be just fine in her safe place - home where she is comfortable and not stressed!!! She is still not home and she will be stressed for some time now no matter what you do.

If you do want to try this - after you have given your kitty lots of care and time and maybe some time at her own home (or better still leave her there - this dog sounds like he should not be around her to be honest) - here is one site with some instructions but you need at least two weeks to do it properly! NEVER EVER introduce cats and dogs quickly like that - I know it occasionally works but that is atypical.

http://www.cuhumane.org/topics/catdog.html

Do you also know if this dog's vaccinations are up to date?

Another site says this and this may be what you might try - "Cats are very territorial and do not appreciate any change in their environment. Therefore, no matter what, this will be a stressful situation for your cat. Be sure your cat is mentally and physically healthy before introducing her to a dog. Ask a friend to bring the dog to your home. Be sure the dog is on a leash and under control at the time of arrival. Your friend can then turn the dog and leash over to you. If your cat does not run and hide, let her make the first advances toward the new dog. If the dog displays any inappropriate aggressive behavior toward the cat, he should be quickly and firmly corrected with a slight jerk on the leash and a verbal "NO." "

This dog has to think you are the leader as well and that needs to be established first BEFORE a cat enters the picture. My best advice is to bring your cat home - she will be so greatful to you - and much healthier for it! Even if she seems fine, this will traumaitize her!!


1. Your comments toward me personally were really unnecessary and very rude. And I do NOT appreciate them. I came here for some friendly advice, not ridicule. So, back the hell off. Some of you seem to think you're high and mighty and pet experts, but not all of us are. But just because we make a mistake or follow something someone else suggested that YOU don't agree with, does not mean you should ridicule what we did.

2. I stated several times I keep the cat in a room locked up. In fact, he's been there pretty much the entire time. I only take him out for an hour or so at a time. I NEVER leave him outside that room when I am not at the condo or able to watch them.

3. He's still acting like himself and is very loving when I go into the room. He purrs and is happy. And when I open the door, he will actually peer out at the dog now, and be curious, and does not run away right away.

4. The kitten snuck in once when I went in, and they actually played together for a bit. My cat even licked her. There was no hissing or growling whatsoever. So he seems to be completely fine with the kitten at least.

5. I did read several sites about what to do, and I followed what they said. One site (which I said earlier told me to do this, I didn't just think of it on my own) said to put the cat in a pen so it would feel secure but can still see what's going, and if a pen wasn't available to use a carrier. So that's what I did.

6. The other night major progress was made. I had the dog tied up on her leash, and let her sniff the cat while I was holding him. The cat did not growl or hiss hardly at all. He probably moaned once or twice for the hour I had him out. At first I was standing and held him in my arms. After the dog calmed down a little, I crouched, and then eventually I was sitting on the floor with the cat in my lap. The dog sniffed the cat, and licked him all over. A couple times she tried to nip him trying to play, but once I said "NO." she stopped. The dog even layed down, and put her head on my knee next to the cat. Eventually I stopped holding the cat, and even with the dog right there, he stayed in my lap. But once I put him on the floor, he did run away. But the big progess made was that the dog took 2 steps forward, and stopped. She did not try to chase after the cat at full force like she normally does (even with the leash). She was very good. So I definitely consider there was a lot of progress made. They may not become best friends before I leave the condo on Tuesday, but now I see that eventually they may get along. The dog and kitten play rough together, but last time I was teaching her that she has to be "nice" with my cat, and I think she's beginning to learn.

And that's all I have to say. Thanks to everyone for their suggestions and advice who weren't rude and condenscending about it.

rainbow
February 5th, 2006, 04:40 PM
Congratulations on your success!! I did things pretty much the same way you did. I`ve always had dogs and cats that I had to introduce to one another and they`ve always ended up being best of friends. The cats I have now love to be chased and if they want to play they will tease the dogs until they chase them. The other day the Siamese jumped up in the air and landed on the Siberian Husky and then ran like hell. Good luck!!:)