How to Tell If Your Dog Will Like Cats
If you’re planning on bringing a new cat into your home, you had better be sure your dog will be okay with it. Some dogs love cats – as in, they love to chase them – while other dogs don’t seem to care much about them at all. How do you know if your dog will like a cat before you actually bring it home?
Though you can’t make exact predictions about how your dog will react to anything, there are certain signs you can look for that suggest your dog might be cat-friendly. Keep reading to learn more about how to tell if a dog is cat-friendly and to receive tips for introducing a dog to cats.
How to Tell if a Dog is Cat-Friendly
You’ve probably been asked at least once in your life whether you’re a dog person or a cat person, but have you ever asked your dog? Some dogs are friendly with everyone, regardless of species, while other dogs just can’t seem to get along. If your dog is going to be interacting with a cat anytime soon, you should think about how you think the interaction will go so you can prepare for it.
So, how do you know if your dog is going to be cat-friendly?
One thing to think about is your dog’s breed. Certain breed groups like toy breeds and companion pets tend to get along with just about everyone, including cats. Hunting breeds and terriers, on the other hand, are often trained to chase down small animals so, while they may not actually want to hurt the cat, they can become overly excited and react by chasing after it.
In addition to your dog’s breed, think about his individual personality and how he reacts in different situations. When the doorbells rings, does your dog immediately run to the door and jump on whoever’s behind it? Or does he approach new situations calmly and with restraint? Some dogs may even have a fearful reaction if they have never encountered a cat or cat sounds before.
Tips for Introducing a Dog to Cats
There is a right way and a wrong way to introduce your dog to cats for the first time. The wrong way is to simply bring the cat into the room and see how your dog reacts. The right way is a more controlled approach that ensures both the cat and the dog are less likely to feel threatened and to respond in a negative way. It’s best to do a quick test with one animal in a crate or behind a glass door.
The first stage of introduction is to let your dog see the cat. If your dog has a calm personality, you might be able to bring the cat into the room in a crate and let your dog sniff around. As long as your dog (and the cat) respond well to this test, you can open the crate and let the cat out. It’s a good idea to keep your dog on a leash, however, so you can restrain him if needed. If your dog responds calmly without lunging or becoming overly excited, you can let the two of them interact freely.
When it comes to animals, you always have to expect the unexpected. There is no way to know what is really going through your dog’s head, and you need to be prepared to step in if something goes wrong. Take what you’ve learned here to properly introduce your dog to cats for the best result.
Kate Barrington is the loving owner of two cats (Bagel and Munchkin) and a noisy herd of guinea pigs. Having grown up with golden retrievers, Kate has a great deal of experience with dogs but labels herself a lover of all pets. Having received a Bachelor's degree in English, Kate has combined her love for pets and her passion for writing to create her own freelance writing business, specializing in the pet niche.
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