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Kcmarie September 6th, 2016 06:14 PM

Dog snapped at cat
Hi everyone, i have a 4 year old lab mix who i am currently introducing to my 2 adult cats
Everything has been going well. My dog (who is very prey driven) will ignore the cats, and has done very well around them...for the most part.
He has snapped and lunged at them twice.
The first time, my dog and i were both sitting on the couch, and one cat was creeping up on us. She got very close and maybe tried to swat at him or could have been just wanting to check him out. I was looking at my phone so i'm unsure. Anyway, my dog leaped off the couch, barked and chased her away (he only ran a couple of feet) that was the first worrying sign, and that was after about two weeks with no signs of aggresion at all.
The second time was today, when my dog was eating. The cat tried to get close to his food bowl, and the dog barked and lunged at the cat. The cat stood its ground and everyone was ok.
They are completely comfortable to the degree where they all hangout in the same room and will all sleep on the couch (all spread out..still no cuddling :(
Anyways other than those two cases, all has been great. Especially considering the fact that this is a new situation. Should i still leave them unattended? Have been for a month and all seems to be fine. Just want everyone to be safe.

Should i be overly concerned? Or is my dog just trying to assert some dominance? The cats have mostly asserted all the dominance at this point. Typical cats. Please any feedback would be greatly appreciated!

I should also add, that my dog has never shown any signs of food agression once in his life. Towards any human or any dog. This is first time it has happened in 4 years, so it has taken me off guard.

Barkingdog September 6th, 2016 06:52 PM


This tell how to introduce dogs and cats , it has to be done slowing . Your dog may not what to share you with the cats and snapped at them for this reason. Your dog will need some along time with you so it would be feeling left out or like it being replace . Animals will get jealous just like people do . My last dog wouldn't let me pat another dog he would block the dog from getting close to me.

hazelrunpack September 6th, 2016 08:28 PM

So this is after only a month of introduction? I'd call that pretty remarkable. :D We were adopted by a young, stray cat in mid-July and we're only up to 20 minutes under strict supervision with our 5 older (ages 10 to almost 15) English setters. Yes, we're being super cautious! :laughing:

I would have to see the dog in action to know for sure what his intent was when he lunged but it [I]sounds[/I] like he wasn't out for blood, but just warning them off in both cases. Do your cats have safe places to run to where the dog can't get to him? Will they defend themselves (do they have their claws?) if attacked?

I think to be on the safe side, I'd still be separating them when they're unattended, but you're off to a great start! You can always feed the dog behind a closed door if you're worried about that aspect of it. (We feed all of our dogs in separate areas and the cat is kept away at dinner time.) The thing that would concern me most would be the couch incident, if it turns out that the pooch was guarding you as a resource--in that case, a little behavioral modification might be necessary to discourage it. But if it's only been the one incident in a month, and you aren't certain what cat/dog interaction precipitated it, it's just something to keep in the back of your mind. Be watchful, but don't worry too much till you know what's going on.

Kcmarie September 6th, 2016 09:10 PM

Yes both cats have claws and have a safe place to run if necessary. The one cat was also a stray and also chose me haha. She also turned out to be pregnant, which is why i have two cats now lol. I do think they are doing great for the most part and will continue to closely monitor. Thanks for the feedback!

Longblades September 7th, 2016 07:31 AM

I would not worry but I would not leave them unattended for a while yet. Sounds to me your dog was remarkably restrained if all he did was lunge and snap. The cat may have swatted his tail, or even bitten it as happened when my own dog lunged and snapped at a wayward cat. That cat (of mine) deserved to be told off, no biting the dog's tail is allowed. Ditto around his food dish. My dog is very tolerant but not of cats muscling into his meal, they have been told, by him, to beat it in the same way your dog did. The cats have told the dog off too, when he has tried to eat some of their food while they are eating, and gotten some well deserved whacks on his nose. Otherwise they are all friends and will snuggle and purr and rub up against each other. Just food is off limits to the other. Yours may too, in time.

Honedge September 27th, 2016 10:46 PM


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