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Bonding a cat and a puppy.

July 7th, 2009, 12:39 AM
My fiance and I have an 11 year old cat. It is actually my sister's cat but we will probably be looking after it for the rest of it's life. Anyways, we are looking at getting a puppy within the next couple months. In the past the cat has been around both dogs and cats without much problem. My main issue, though, is a few months ago my fiance's parents dog came over and the cat went crazy!!!! The dog is a cockapoo and was being a little hyper but in no way mean. Well I was holding the cat and the cat went crazy on me and put a bunch of gashes on me. I have no idea why he behaved this way!!! Could it be he just got grumpy and old in the past couple years without no other animal contact? Or did he just feel threatened at the time? It was mine and the cat's first day living in the new house so maybe he didn't feel safe? Anwyas, I am a little worried about getting a puppy. What do you think? Oh, I do have a pet rabbit and the cat doesn't mind him. They walk around eachother all the time so it's not like the cat attacks anything that moves. Is it possible to bond them by slowly introducing them? Probably by using a crate.

July 7th, 2009, 08:12 AM
Because the cat is older, it probably won't appreciate a young, hyper, rambunctious puppy in the house. But yes, I'm sure you can introduce a puppy to your home. They may not "bond", but with proper training you should be able to get the cat to at least tolerate your puppy. You definitely will have to take the time to properly and slowly introduce them. What breed of dog are you thinking of getting?

It just sounds like your cat was startled by the cockapoo - probably because the introduction wasn't slow. If the cockapoo ran up to the cat or was trying to get at it while you were holding it (to sniff it or whatever), then it's not really a big surprise that your cat freaked! If introducing a new dog - perhaps to test if your cat could tolerate a puppy - make sure the dog is leashed, for sure. You should restrain the dog initially, not the cat.

Could you maybe consider adopting a slightly older dog? Maybe just a couple years old, which is past the super-energetic puppy stage and is used to being around cats? It could be easier to get your cat used to a calmer adult dog.

We were able to get our 3 year old cat used to our Pug when he came to us at 6 months - but your cat is approaching old age so it's kind of a different situation.

July 7th, 2009, 08:29 AM
I agree with Endoffashion, a hyper pup may be too much for a senior cat. An older, calm dog who has been around cats may be a better way to go.

July 7th, 2009, 10:21 AM
At the moment we are thinking about a Golden Doodle. I am always keeping my eye out at shelters and stuff as well for older dogs. Is it possible that a cat might never bond to a dog?

July 7th, 2009, 10:29 AM
I have had a heck of alot of foster dogs and cats over the years. Everyone thus far is guiding you in the right direction. Please consider a dog that is already grown and has lived with a feline. If you consult with rescue groups, they will be able to introduce you to the right dog based on your home life and your feline companion. This is the responsible and best course of action.

Some cats adjust very well and others may not - no one can predict this here. What you do not want to do however is tramatize your cat with a rambunctious pup. This is setting the cat and puppy up for failure - there is no disputing this.

July 7th, 2009, 10:42 AM
Why the Goldendoodle? Are you looking specifically for a non-shedding breed?

You could definitely try There are a lot of poodle mixes and other non-shedding breeds listed, but without knowing where you're located I can't tell what's in your area.

It is possible for a cat to never get along with dogs - Frenchy (on this site) is having this problem with an adopted cat. With enough training, most will at least tolerate dogs, but for some it may be too stressful - and senior animals in general are not always tolerant of rambunctious puppies/kittens. I didn't think this would be likely for your cat because you said it had been around other dogs before without problem, but an older dog may be the way to go. :thumbs up

July 8th, 2009, 11:38 AM
It really depends on the animals involved. Our family has three cats, and we introduced a puppy. One cat(2 yrs old) grew up with a dog. He lets, and encourages, the puppy to play with him, letting her chew on him until we rescue him. Our female cat (don't know age or history with dogs) swatted the puppy on first meeting, continued to swat for the first few weeks, and now contents herself with a warning meow if the puppy gets too close. the kitten had no experience with dogs, he was scared stiff and has decided to spend the majority of his time in the basement where the puppy doesn't go, and avoids her when he does come up.