Dog Forum banner
1 - 6 of 6 Posts

· Registered
Joined
·
4 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
hi guys! i need help desperately!
so…. my girlfriend and i curently don’t live together, are moving in together in 2 weeks to a new place. she has a 8 year old 8 pound cat, and i have an 10 year old 8 pound yorkie.

i have brought my dog to her place a couple of times, but always on a leash, to avoid her from running towards the kitty. she has tried to run at her before but the leash has helped me stop her. also, the cat sometimes would jump on the table and when my dog would try to look and see, the cat has tried to slice her up! lol. nothing happened thankfully bc we bought soft nail covers for the kitty.

what we had thought of doing was just bringing them together to this new apartment and hopefully they could adjust together but now i don’t know anymore.

does anyone have any recommendations?

anything would be greatly appreciated!
 

· Registered
Joined
·
4 Posts
Discussion Starter · #2 ·
i should also mention that we bought a gate as well. another good thing to mention is that the cat (Rue) has lived with a dog before but has been living a cat free house for around 4 years.
and the dog (Bella) has never lived with any cats before. she however will bark and run up to cats if sees one in the yard.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
1,267 Posts
Use that gate and keep them separated for now. I do warn that despite Yorkies being considered lap dogs now, they did work. They were used to catch and kill rats and other vermin, so she does have prey drive, and the cat is trying to defend itself.
Anyway, introductions.
1. Keep Separated. Feliway is a cat pheromone that can help ease stress for the cat.
2. Keep door closed so dog doesn't fixate on cat. Wipe a cloth across the cat's body and allow dog to sniff. Vice versa with the dog, but give the cat more time to check it out. After about an hour, pull the cloth out. Repeat for a week or more.
3. Open door. One of you with cat and the other with dog, and make it busy so they are having something positive and more interesting than the other animal. For example, training and treats for dog and playing for cat. *do not have them right next to the gate
4. Close door when session is done and repeat for a few weeks.
5. Allow dinner to happen with the ability to see, but not bother. Step back if needed.
6. Allow cat to investigate dog while dog is on leash. Keep separated while no one is supervising.
7.If this goes well, you can slowly start fading the gate. But always keep perches and places of safety for the cat to have access to.
And more options
 

· Registered
Joined
·
4 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Use that gate and keep them separated for now. I do warn that despite Yorkies being considered lap dogs now, they did work. They were used to catch and kill rats and other vermin, so she does have prey drive, and the cat is trying to defend itself.
Anyway, introductions.
1. Keep Separated. Feliway is a cat pheromone that can help ease stress for the cat.
2. Keep door closed so dog doesn't fixate on cat. Wipe a cloth across the cat's body and allow dog to sniff. Vice versa with the dog, but give the cat more time to check it out. After about an hour, pull the cloth out. Repeat for a week or more.
3. Open door. One of you with cat and the other with dog, and make it busy so they are having something positive and more interesting than the other animal. For example, training and treats for dog and playing for cat. *do not have them right next to the gate
4. Close door when session is done and repeat for a few weeks.
5. Allow dinner to happen with the ability to see, but not bother. Step back if needed.
6. Allow cat to investigate dog while dog is on leash. Keep separated while no one is supervising.
7.If this goes well, you can slowly start fading the gate. But always keep perches and places of safety for the cat to have access to.
And more options
thank you!
 

· Registered
Joined
·
4 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Use that gate and keep them separated for now. I do warn that despite Yorkies being considered lap dogs now, they did work. They were used to catch and kill rats and other vermin, so she does have prey drive, and the cat is trying to defend itself.
Anyway, introductions.
1. Keep Separated. Feliway is a cat pheromone that can help ease stress for the cat.
2. Keep door closed so dog doesn't fixate on cat. Wipe a cloth across the cat's body and allow dog to sniff. Vice versa with the dog, but give the cat more time to check it out. After about an hour, pull the cloth out. Repeat for a week or more.
3. Open door. One of you with cat and the other with dog, and make it busy so they are having something positive and more interesting than the other animal. For example, training and treats for dog and playing for cat. *do not have them right next to the gate
4. Close door when session is done and repeat for a few weeks.
5. Allow dinner to happen with the ability to see, but not bother. Step back if needed.
6. Allow cat to investigate dog while dog is on leash. Keep separated while no one is supervising.
7.If this goes well, you can slowly start fading the gate. But always keep perches and places of safety for the cat to have access to.
And more options
i’m so worried about all of this. everything will be okay. i think i will start to bring toys from each other so they can smell it. even before we move.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
303 Posts
I just wanted to add a few things that worked for me - in addition to the suggestions above.

1. I find that with older dogs with little previous cat experience, it's wise to have a very clear set of rules. We have two dogs (and pet-sit a few others from time to time): the high prey drive one has a very strict no chasing, no playing, no butt sniffing, no following, staring, no fixating on the cat policy. We 've basically trained him to ignore the cat, and it works great. He is trustworthy around the cat indoors and outdoors (but I still supervise outdoor interactions, just in case). We mostly used redirection, positive reinforcement for focusing on us or relaxing when the cat was around, leave it cue. The older, low prey drive dog has a bit more freedom. Dogs we pet-sit always have strict no-engagement rules. Clear, consistent "rules of engagement" are very important, they help keep everyone safe.

2. There are many things you can do to help your dog be successful:
  • Brush up on her training - start now, before the move, particularly place/go to your spot, relax in your spot, stay, leave it cues and impulse control training. Teach them if she doesn't know them yet, or if she already knows them, make them as bomb proof as possible. These cues will be really helpful when you are ready for the cat to start moving around the apartment.
  • Make sure she is well exercised (ideally physically and mentally) before any cat encounters, pent up energy and boredom are your enemies. Let the cat explore the apartment while your dog is out on a walk. That's another way for them to get used to each other's scent prior to meeting.
  • In your new apartment, designate a day-spot for your dog (dog bed, crate). The spot should be a bit tucked away, not in the middle of the cat's natural path. I usually use a corner in the living room close to where I'm sitting. Teach your dog to love that spot and reward heavily for relaxing in it. Practice a strong stay in the designated place. Once you're ready for the cat to be in the same room, have the dog stay in place while the cat is moving around.

3. Design your new environment in a way that gives your cat safe spots (Shadowfox already mentioned that, but specifically):
  • high places to escape to,
  • comfortable high perches,
  • cat's food and water out of the dog's reach (we feed them in the same room, but the cat's food and water is on a comfortable, high shelf),
  • cat's litter box somewhere the dog does not have access to, so that she can't get ambushed,
  • cat's scratch posts in a safe spot, out of the dog's reach (scratching and playing triggers some dogs),
  • watch for stress signals in the cat. Many cats can hold their own when it comes to dogs, but I feel it's important to make sure neither animal is stressed out.

Lastly, I just wanted to encourage you: it can be done! It takes work, patience, diligence and consistent guidance, especially in the first few weeks, but most dogs can learn to live with cats. I never though my dog could live with a cat, until he had to :) But it's been a very enriching and safe experience for everybody.
 
1 - 6 of 6 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.
Top