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Moving house with a cat to where there is a dog

craig46
January 19th, 2008, 10:50 AM
OOPS! 'That was supposed to say 'dog Hi all. I am new to this forum and need some advice. I am moving in with my girlfiend in the next few weeks (lucky me) and of course my cat, BJ, is coming along also.The problem is that she has a dog! He is a nice small dog who, from what I have seen, is kinda neutral towards cats. He does not chase them (outside) and just ignores them, really.

My cat BJ, came from a rescue centre 9 months ago and is a very affectionate neutered tom of about 6 years old. He was a stray for about 2 years and then was taken in by a family who emigrated after 3 years and put him in the home, where I got him from.

Any advice on the best way to handle the move/introduction would be very much appreciated!

SARAH
January 19th, 2008, 11:53 AM
Hi there, and welcome!

Is there a way you could introduce the two pets to eachother on neutral ground (i.e. not her place and not your place, a friend's would be good)

Otherwise, try keeping the cat in a carrier while they sniff eachother through the grill-door and if there is no sign of any animosity on either part, open the carrier and stay close to intervene should you need to.

If they seem to freak out, keep the cat in a separate room (with a baby-gate) for a few days (weeks) till they get used to seeing and smelling eachother.

Mainly, be calm. Pets pick up on your stress and other moods, if you are calm and confident, they won't be as likely to think there is a (potential) problem in the making.

Good luck with the move, and please post pics as soon as you are allowed to do so.

krdahmer
January 19th, 2008, 11:57 AM
I've always used introduction through a closed door for the first few days, then switched them out so in your case after a few days of the cat being sequestered, you switch them and let the dog go in the room and sniff the cat smells and let the cat out to investigate the new house and the dog smells. This way when they come face to face the smells are more familiar. And don't worry there will be hissing and barking no doubt, but that will be them communicating about who will be boss (I have no doubt the cat will win that arguement, they usually do! ;) ).

Best of luck and congrats on the big move!

sugarcatmom
January 19th, 2008, 12:07 PM
Hi craig46,

First of all, since moving is very stressful for cats, you'll want to set up a "safe room" for BJ in his new home. Is there a bedroom or bathroom where you can keep the dog out for a little while until BJ becomes more comfortable? Set it up all cozy with litter box, food/water and a box or carrier that BJ can sleep in. Spend lots of time with him in there and when you think he's ready to see the rest of the house (could be days, maybe even weeks if he's really freaked out), let him explore without the dog around at first. Then slow introductions with the dog confined (leash or carrier) until neither seem too excited about the situation. Make sure BJ can get back to his safe room if needed. Cats also like to be able to escape to high places, so if you have a tall scratching post/condo or somewhere else he can jump up to, that would be ideal. There's a good article here about introducing dogs and cats: http://www.labadoption.org/linkpages/DogBehave/Articles/Cats.pdf

Good luck! I hope things go smoothly for all of you.

sugarcatmom
January 19th, 2008, 12:15 PM
Is there a way you could introduce the two pets to eachother on neutral ground (i.e. not her place and not your place, a friend's would be good)

That works for dogs but I don't recommend it when there's a cat involved. It's important for the cat to feel comfortable and confident and that's not going to be the case in a new environment.


Otherwise, try keeping the cat in a carrier while they sniff eachother through the grill-door and if there is no sign of any animosity on either part, open the carrier and stay close to intervene should you need to.

I prefer the reverse: keep the dog confined at first so that the cat feels it can escape if needed. Providing toys or catnip or something to help the cat associate the dog with a positive experience would also help.

tonkamcd
January 19th, 2008, 02:01 PM
That works for dogs but I don't recommend it when there's a cat involved. It's important for the cat to feel comfortable and confident and that's not going to be the case in a new environment.




I prefer the reverse: keep the dog confined at first so that the cat feels it can escape if needed. Providing toys or catnip or something to help the cat associate the dog with a positive experience would also help.



I would agree with sugarcatmom, as of the two the cat is more likely to become spooked if he feels as though he is trapped with no escape from the dog. I especially like the baby gate way, (having a room for the cat with the baby gate up, because the cat knows he always has somewhere to go that's away from the dog instead of running around the place like a maniac looking for an escape. I have used the baby gate method, plus the method of keeping the cat in a seperate room for a few days and then letting them out while the dog has been on a leash and made the dog sit still and just stay calm, either way it can take a while for them to get used to each other. We used the baby gate method when we got two of our cats as kittens, and the seperate rooms when we got our other cat as an adult.