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A specific question about dog and kitty introductions

January 18th, 2010, 05:05 PM
Please forgive me if this question has been asked in previous posts, but I'm new here and haven't read all of the posts on the board (you are all busy lil` posters, I see!:))

I have a small dog, aged 6, and am seriously thinking about adopting a Birman cat or kitten. I've done alot of research about how to do the intros, so that's not my particular question (I've got a good breeder who's also very supportive).

The question I have is this: how many of you with cats and dogs have had problems with their dogs getting cat scratches/injuries? Is this common, or uncommon? Is a cat scratch the same or worse than a dog scratch?

Just wondering what your experiences have been.


Kay and Buddy :pawprint:

January 18th, 2010, 05:27 PM
Unless you have a VERY persistant dog - generally one scratch is enough to teach a dog a lesson.

Just ensure that your dog is getting a lot of mental stimulation/excercise and you shouldn't have too much trouble with your dog attempting to make a play-thing out of the cat.

A cat scratch can potentially be worse than a dog scratch, simply because the claws on a cat is the cats first defense - while a dogs teeth are it's first defense.

My dogs have gotten a few swipes from our cats, but like I say - dogs generally learn fast. A hiss after one or two swipes seems to be enough to warn the dog that they need to respect the cats space.

January 18th, 2010, 06:41 PM
When I brought my newest cat home, my dog got a pretty good bomp on the nose, there was blood...just put some pressure on it and the bleeding stopped. Just make sure kitty has a safe place to go if things get to much. I know my dog, even though she already lives with two older cats, was bonkers about the new one. She didn't want to stop, even with the bloody nose. I had to make sure that new kitty had a place to go and unwind the the dog could not get to. Now they are bestest friends, and there has been no problems since.

January 18th, 2010, 07:03 PM
Oh and I just want to add to ensure that kittys nails are clipped before you bring them home! This will help reduce the chances of your pup getting hurt.

January 18th, 2010, 08:36 PM
I found this article a while back and found it interesting enough to save it.

It had some helpful hints. Good luck! :thumbs up


January 19th, 2010, 03:40 PM
thanks guys :)

I am so afraid that I'll end up with a situation where I'll have an unhappy dog (where I previously had a happy one) and an unhappy cat. I don't want them miserable, fearful, uneasy with their lives--I want them happy (even if they ignore each other).

I'm also afraid I'll traumatize both in the process.

Grrrrh. :wall:

January 19th, 2010, 05:56 PM
Kay, don't worry. If you have done your research it should be no problem. Make sure they both have their space. If you are really uncomfortable, take it really slow, keep one behind a closed door and let the other one sniff, alternate who gets to sniff who behind a closed door. One thing that really calmed my nerves was that I had total control of my dog. If I said "NO" she knew I meant NO. Be confident over what control you have of your dog, we all know that cats do as they please:D.. Never allow no is easy if you have confidence with your dog.

I know my dog Zoe knows not to bother my one cat Amos. She just knows better. Phoebe is on and off....sometimes she is willing some times not, then with Dexter (he is the new edition) well the two of them are peas in a pod right from day one. Zoe backs off when Dex doesn't want to play, and the same goes for Dexter knowing when to back off of the dog. After they get to know each other it is amazing how they pick up each others body language .....just give it time.

January 19th, 2010, 06:00 PM
There will be an adjustment period for sure; however when done slowly - dogs and cats generally come around on their own time and some become the best of friends.

Just make sure you don't get discouraged if it seems to take longer than you've expected, and always give your cat escape routes through your house. (Srategically placed baby gates, or high cat trees.)

Keep us posted!

January 20th, 2010, 05:19 PM
thanks everyone :)