How should I introduce my new dog or puppy to the family cat? – RSPCA Knowledgebase
When a new canine member is welcomed into the family, it is a joyous and exciting moment, but it can also be a bit daunting for everyone involved. This, however, may be addressed with advance planning, ensuring that everyone feels protected and that tension is kept to a minimum. It is critical that you carefully handle the introduction of your new dog or puppy to your household and that your new cat and dog are constantly under your supervision until you are confident that everyone is comfortable and safe.
Taking the time to locate a thorough book about the breed/crossbred you are purchasing well before bringing them home will ensure that you are well prepared for their arrival, according to RSPCA Australia.
Choosing the right dog
Some dogs will fit in better with a household that already has pets, while others will struggle to adjust. Young pups are tend to be more lively than older dogs; if you already have older pets, you may want to consider adopting a calm adult dog who is cat friendly. Make an RSPCA-affiliated shelter your first choice if you want to adopt a dog or puppy since they have been temperament assessed and the staff will be able to give you an idea of how the dog or puppy will react to other animals. In order to pick a dog or puppy who will get along better with your cat, you should consider the following factors.
Once you’ve settled on a dog or puppy, you’ll need to consider how to introduce them to your other pets in order to ensure that everything goes as smoothly as possible for everyone involved. As a result, all of the animals may be stressed at this time, and it is critical that you remain patient and prepared for the introduction to take place over the course of at least a week, if not many weeks. If you have more than one cat, you should follow the same procedure as described above. Prepare your household and current pets for your new dog or puppy’s arrival by spending some time with them before bringing them home with you.
Additionally, if your cat regularly has its food, water, litter tray, and other necessities in an area where the dog will now be, it is a good idea to plan ahead and relocate these items to a location that only the cat has access to, and to get the cat adjusted to the change before the dog or puppy comes.
When you first bring your new dog or puppy home
Secure your cat in their favorite room, complete with a bed and bedding, drink, food, and litter, on the day you bring your dog home from the groomer. Allow your dog to explore the house before confining him or her to a separate room with comfortable bedding, drink, and a favorite reward. While waiting for your dog to settle down, allow your cat to roam about the home and become acquainted with your dog’s scent. Continually repeat this process over the following few days, allowing each animal its opportunity to have access to the entire house without ever coming into contact with the other animals.
Prepare your dog or puppy for introduction to your cat by working on basic training with them in the interim. This will give you more control over them when the time comes to introduce them.
Introducing your new dog or puppy to your cat
Ideally, your dog or puppy should be crate trained; there are several advantages to doing so, but it will be especially beneficial in this circumstance since it will make the introductions easier and more secure. If feasible, the crate (or your dog’s typical location if he or she does not have a crate) should be placed away from your cat’s normal eating, drinking, toileting, and sleeping places, as well as their access to their enclosure or the outside (e.g., through their cat flap). When you are ready to meet your dog and cat, choose a time when your dog is at his or her most relaxed.
Make use of a room in which your cat may easily escape to a safe location if they so want for the first introduction (for example, a room with some familiar and well used high elevated platforms such as a multi-tiered cat scratching post tower near the area so the cat can escape from the situation and gain vertical height as cats often like to be above the scene looking down and can feel safer that way).
- In case your dog or puppy is in a kennel, you may distract him or her with a toy before bringing your cat into the room.
- Allow the cat to become used to the dog’s presence, and the same goes for the dog.
- In the event that you are unable to make use of a crate for the introductions, begin with this step.
- In order for each animal to be complimented and rewarded at the same time, it is important to have another person present during this process if at all feasible.
- Carry out this procedure numerous times a day, keeping the encounters brief so that tension is reduced to an absolute minimum.
- However, if there is no forced engagement, they are unlikely to advance and, if this does occur, you will have the opportunity to defend your dog or puppy from any aggressive advances.
- Be patient; it will most likely take a few weeks of walking your dog or puppy on a leash while the cat is there before everyone feels comfortable enough to try walking the dog or puppy off-leash for the first time.
- There may be some hissing and tail swishing during the first few days, but this should subside after a few days or so.
- Ensure that your cat has an easy escape path when you are ready to let go of the leash – once again, select a space with elevated platforms such as a multi-tiered scratching post tower, high window sills, or bookcases.
In order to ensure that your cat receives a high level of personalized attention from you during the period of time during which you are introducing the dog/puppy Wait until you are completely satisfied that your animals tolerate one other, that the dog/puppy has been educated not to chase the cat, and that they are all secure before you leave them alone with each other.
However, even when you feel comfortable leaving the two unsupervised together, the cat should ALWAYS have a safe haven where they may escape (somewhere that the dog cannot get, such as elevated platforms).
Obviously, this is a source of great anxiety, and it is critical that you take every precaution to ensure that the introductions are carried out as gently and slowly as possible, and that the cat always has safe and secure areas in the house where they can feel safe and secure away from the dog.
Hopefully, they will at the very least learn to tolerate one another and eventually learn to live peacefully together in the same house.
Pets are generally able to strike a balance and share their territory with their owners.
Additionally, making sure your cat has a private space to go to the bathroom as well as a safe sleeping spot may be beneficial. If your attempts at introduction are failing, or if either animal appears nervous or disturbed, it may be necessary to seek expert assistance from a skilled behaviorist.
Introducing a New Puppy To a Household With a Cat
This week is National Puppy Day, which is observed on the first Saturday in September. This is why I’d like to spend some time today to discuss how to safely bring a new puppy into your household with your existing cat. Many people believe that dogs and cats cannot live together in the same house. However, introducing a puppy into a family with a cat (or cats) requires some forethought and patience in order to ensure that the transition is as easy as possible for everyone concerned. Introduce the subject carefully and methodically, in a step-by-step approach.
- You may achieve this by placing them in neighboring rooms that are divided by a door.
- In this way, both your new puppy and your cat will be able to grow acclimated to hearing and smelling one another without the chance of direct contacts occurring during this critical period of adjustment.
- You may also put a blanket or towel with the aroma of your cat in the area where your puppy will be sleeping.
- Make a point of spending quality time with each pet separately during this period.
- Once both pets appear to be comfortable with the existing scenario, it is time to alter their positions.
- During the introductory period, you will be able to move rooms as many times as you like.
- Maintain a physical barrier between them at first.
During the early encounters, keep the puppy on a leash so that you may oversee and guide his actions until you are confident that both pets will accept one another’s company.
Don’t allow your puppy to run after your cat, annoy him, or otherwise irritate him.
It is important that bad conduct is not promoted or permitted to occur, but it is also important that it is not penalized if lapses do occur accidently, since this may cause undesirable responses and conflicts between your puppy and your cat.
Each circumstance, however, is unique, and you should carefully observe the behaviors of both animals before allowing them to remain together unattended at any point.
Additionally, your cat should have a private location where the puppy cannot follow him when he feels the need to be by himself.
And don’t forget to spend lots of alone time with your cat, cuddling or playing with him (without your puppy around). Dr. Lorie Huston is a medical doctor that practices in the United States.
How to Introduce a Dog to a Cat
Some dogs get along perfectly with cats, while others are unable to coexist in a safe environment with felines. Certain cats (depending on their age, temperament, and activity level) can sometimes coexist peacefully with dogs, but not all of them. Even if your dog has previously lived happily with cats, it is vital to remember that each dog and each cat is an individual, and as a result, each introduction will be different.
Body language of dogs and cats
Consider the body language of both animals when you are introducing your dog to a cat for the first time. If the cat’s ears are pinned back or his tail is swishing back and forth, he is likely to be unhappy. You should pay close attention to the body language of your dog, since this might indicate a possible danger. If your dog has a strong prey drive (the desire to seek out, hunt, and perhaps capture creatures perceived as prey — mainly smaller animals such as cats or rabbits), she may become very concentrated on the cat throughout the training session.
- If you notice any of these indicators, do not allow her to get close the cat.
- Even if she is paying attention to the cat, you do not want her to get focused on him.
- If your dog is OK with your cat within the house, it does not necessarily follow that she will behave in the same manner outside.
- As a result, pay attention to her body language while she is around the cat in each new circumstance until you figure out how she will respond to him.
Methods for introducing a dog and a cat
There are numerous approaches that can be used to introduce a dog to a cat. You should try a different approach if the first method of introduction you try doesn’t work or you don’t feel comfortable with it. It is important to proceed with caution during the introduction, even if the dog has previous experience with cats and the cat has previously lived with a dog. It’s best to have two people present — one to supervise the animals and the other to intervene if necessary. If you have more than one dog, you should introduce each dog to the cat one at a time.
Option 1: Slow and steady desensitization
Alternatively, if your dog has become overly obsessed on the cat, you can attempt desensitization, which has the purpose of decreasing your dog’s sensitivity to the cat by progressively increasing her exposure to him. Set up a room (such as a bedroom, bathroom or spare room) with a tall baby gate over the entrance to keep the cat out of trouble. The room you pick should be one that the dog will not be able to reach and will not be required to access. For example, if your dog sleeps in your bedroom with you at night, don’t put the cat in the same room as him.
- Provide the cat with all of the necessary items in his room, including a litter box, toys, food, and water.
- As a result, be certain that your cat cannot go past the gate you have installed.
- To begin desensitization, allow the dog to see the cat through the gate for a small period of time, and then redirect the dog’s attention to something else, such as playing with a toy or practicing commands.
- Praise and reward the dog for being able to divert his or her attention elsewhere.
- Even seeing the cat for the first time might be too thrilling for the dog at times.
- For example, In his chamber, just next to the door, the cat eats his supper, while the dog eats her meal on the opposite side of the door.
- It’s also possible to change out the blankets and bedding of each animal, giving them to the other.
- Hopefully, by gradually exposing the dog to the cat and allowing the dog to grow used to the cat’s presence, the dog will finally become desensitized to the cat and lose interest in the feline companion.
- Individuality distinguishes each dog (and each cat), and each will progress at his or her own rate.
- If you don’t feel comfortable leaving your dog alone with your cat, you should separate the two of them.
Many dogs are capable of injuring or killing a cat in a short period of time, and your dog may also be wounded by the cat. Your top priority should be ensuring that everyone’s well-being is protected.
Option 2: Face-to-face introduction
This is a more brisk introduction to the subject matter. One person should be in charge of keeping the dog on a loose leash and observing the dog’s body language. Somebody else should be keeping an eye on the cat’s body language. If the cat is not hissing or rising his back in the vicinity of the dog, he can be permitted to walk around without restriction. When it comes to dogs, a cat is rarely a threat, although some cats may go on the attack when they encounter them. If the dog is calm in the presence of the cat, you can ask the dog to sit or lie down and remain, if she has been given such cues, while the cat goes around freely, smelling the dog if he so desires, while you supervise.
Option 1 and Option 3 should be tried if the dog is very focused on the cat (e.g., gazing at the cat, rigid body language, refusing to respond when you call her name), or if she lunges and attempts to chase the cat.
Option 3: Look at That
Alternatively, if the short introduction did not work and your dog is still not becoming acclimated to the cat, you may need to attempt some more formal training methods. By engaging in Look at That (LAT) with your dog, you can assist her in learning not to become preoccupied with the cat. In order to receive a reward, you’ll need to train her to gaze at the cat and then back at you. Essentially, she will learn that it is more rewarding to ignore the cat than it is to pay attention to it. Take a look at that training schedule.
- That is her breaking point.
- One dog’s threshold may be five feet away from the cat, while another dog’s threshold may be 25 feet away from the cat.
- The cat may also show signs of distress if she begins to move more slowly, stares, and stiffens her body as a result of your proximity to her.
- Once you’ve determined the dog’s comfort level, arm yourself with a clicker and some extremely tasty pea-sized goodies.
- Put 10 goodies in your palm and keep the bag near by in case you want to consume them later.
- You may have to place the reward directly in front of her nose the first few times, but after a few repetitions, she should begin to look eagerly at you as soon as she hears the marking.
- Spend the 10 treats by clicking every time she stares at the cat until she has used them all up.
- If she does that, either click or use the verbal signal when she looks at you, and then give her a reward, she will learn to behave better.
- Mark her for staring at the cat a further ten times and then try it one more.
- If the dog becomes transfixed on the cat as you go closer, you’ve over the line and need to back away from the cat.
- Continue to work on LAT with your dog until she is comfortable being right near to the cat without being bothered.
The amount of practice you put in and the sorts of goodies you use will determine how quickly your dog’s threshold falls. It will also rely on your dog (since every dog learns at a different speed) and your cat’s comfort level.
Introducing kittens and puppies
It is important to remember that kittens may not be afraid of dogs, therefore you must keep a close eye on the dog while meeting the two of them. Because kittens are little and have a great desire to run and play, dogs with a high prey drive may become extremely stimulated by the movement of a kitten. Even if your dog gets along with your adult cats, it’s crucial to keep a watchful eye on her while she’s around a young kitten. Your dog, especially if she is young and energetic, has the potential to injure or kill the kitten just by attempting to play with it.
- Adult cats and puppies can occasionally get along well together because a highly-socialized adult cat may be comfortable with a puppy acting like a puppy in particular situations.
- For the time being, you will need to supervise their interactions until the puppy is old enough to exert greater self-control and has received some training.
- Baby gates may be used to keep the animals secure and comfortable while yet allowing them to interact.
- If she starts chasing the cat, you will be able to simply redirect her away from the undesirable behavior.
Seeking help from a professional
It is common for animals who have had a positive previous experience to adjust easily and quickly to a new pet in the family. However, if the introductions do not go smoothly, you should seek assistance from a professional dog trainer or behavior expert. Never resort to corporal punishment since it will not assist and may even make the situation worse. Find a professional dog trainer.
Pet Owner Tricks: Introducing A New Puppy to Your Cat
Getting a puppy may be a life-changing event for both the owner and the animal. Getting a puppy while already owning a cat, on the other hand, can be a difficult proposition. A puppy can be a very difficult animal to integrate into a cat’s family; but, doing so is not impossible. It is simpler to introduce puppies than older dogs to cats since puppies are still learning and can adjust their behavior more quickly than adult dogs. Here’s what you should know in order to ensure that your first meeting goes as well as possible:
Start With Separation
When obtaining a puppy for the first time, it’s important to think about how they’ll conduct among other animals, especially cats. Puppies are extremely gregarious creatures, but cats are extremely territorial animals that may be wary of a newcomer in their territory. As a result, it is necessary to start with very basic steps while making introductions. The first step is to keep them fully segregated from one another, with all of their feeding and playing necessities kept in different rooms.
Begin by arranging blankets and towels scented with each other’s odors in each other’s respective rooms.
Following a period of time during which they grow acquainted with one other’s odours, you may begin moving their chambers.
This will help them become more acclimated to being in close proximity to one another. It is then possible to start thinking about how to introduce your new puppy to your cat after exchanging their rooms a few times with each other.
How to Introduce a Puppy to Your Cat
After they have spent some time getting to know one another’s odors, it is time to introduce them to one another. Beginning the process with alternate confinement is a terrific method to get things moving. Begin by restricting your puppy for the time being. Cats are naturally cautious creatures, and as a result, they will not pursue the puppy immediately. They will keep a close eye on him in order to better comprehend their new visitor. You should alter confinement after your cat has began to recognize that a puppy will be in their space.
- It will be easier to avoid and correct aggressive behavior if you keep your puppy on a leash inside the house.
- It is possible that your puppy may begin to smell and paw at the entrance through which your cat is kept caged.
- Setting up boundaries around the house is another approach of exposing your dog and cat to one another.
- This will provide your cat with the comfort of being able to have some alone time away from your puppy.
Contrary to common opinion, cats and puppies may coexist peacefully in the same home. A great deal of discipline and awareness of your pet’s demands are required when introducing your puppy to your existing cat. Cats enjoy being alone and watching, but dogs enjoy mingling and chasing after their prey. Thus, high perches and escapes are essential for cats to feel safe and comfortable in their homes, especially when they share their space with dogs. It is possible that you may want to confine both of your pets while you are away from the house to protect them from getting into trouble while they are learning to get along with each other.
Make sure to praise and treat them whenever they exhibit excellent behavior around the feline.
It is critical not to discipline your puppy right away, since this might be counterproductive and result in a more stressful living environment.
Then, as soon as he leaves your cat alone, give him a treat to say thanks.
Living with cats and puppies might seem like a very difficult proposition at first. The correct discipline, skill, and understanding may help pups and cats become best friends, resulting in a healthy and pleasurable living environment for both the pets and their owners.
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How to Introduce a New Puppy To a Cat
If you have a cat and have been thinking about getting a puppy, it’s likely that you’ve been thinking about how to introduce your canine to your feline. Here’s what you need know. It is possible, and it can be done pretty well, but it will need time and patience. Many cat owners set aside a day for their cats to get to know one another; it may take less time than that, but the key is that the process does not need to be rushed in any way. There are many dogs and cats who get along really well…after the initial time of adjustment.
Here are some tips to assist you successfully integrate your new puppy into a family that already has a cat.
Step One: Separation
Before you bring your new baby home, prepare a room for the cat, furnishing it with a litter box, food, water, toys, his bed or favorite blanket, and whatever else he requires for his own personal comfort. If you wish to, and if you’ve already visited the puppy, you may place a blanket with his fragrance on it in the cat’s enclosure. Then close the door behind you. This may appear to be too severe, yet it is vital to ensure the safety of the animals involved. Both pets will be able to hear and smell each other when you first bring the puppy home, even if the door will be closed between them.
This stage is all about making the transition from one environment to another as smooth as possible for each animal.
The use of a pheromone spray, which is a natural technique to provide your cat with a sense of security during stressful times, can help alleviate some of the tension your cat may be experiencing.
Step Two: Bond and Switch Rooms
Spend quality time with each animal in their respective room, playing with them, caressing them, and conversing with them. Ensure that both of them are comfortable. You will have to switch animals back and forth, or if you have a companion, the two of you may alternate taking turns with each animal. After that, keep the animals contained (but not together) and move rooms. Allow the animal to go around and investigate (and sniff!) the area where the other animal was. This procedure should be repeated multiple times.
Does the cat appear to be agitated?
Or is he just curiously sniffing about without apprehension?
Due to the fact that he is the newcomer to the household, the puppy may appear to be content and only want to play. The idea is for each animal to feel comfortable in its own environment, which may take some time in each area. Throughout this period, patience will be required on your part.
Step Three: The Introduction
The moment has come for the two animals to meet face to face, after you are satisfied that they are both comfortable with the odors of each other. Keep something between them at first, such as a baby gate or a kennel with a closed door for the cat, and keep the puppy on a leash until the situation is resolved. Despite the fact that they have finally met face to face, it is critical to maintain control of the situation so that neither animal panics or becomes overly enthusiastic, which might cause the other animal to become scared.
In all likelihood, the puppy will hop, romp, and bark.
This is quite natural, and you may have second thoughts about your decision to bring the puppy into the house for a short second.
Don’t be concerned, though.
Step Four: The “Real” Meeting
If you choose, you may allow both pets to get to know each other without putting any restrictions on them. This decision is entirely up to you, and you do have alternatives because only you are familiar with your pet. Although you may allow both animals to roam freely, you should not allow the puppy to run after the cat. If you believe he will, keep the puppy on a leash while you let the cat out to roam free in the yard. What occurs next is unpredictable, and the cat may decide to flee and seek refuge elsewhere.
- ), so just let it happen.
- In any case, you are confident that you have correctly transitioned them, and you only need to give it some time.
- If the cat escapes into the closet, you may be confident that he will not remain there indefinitely!
- A weary and comfortable dog is a happy dog, and one who is less inclined to run after the cat.
- The ability of dogs and cats to get along is not in doubt; it simply takes time for them to become acquainted with one another.
All that is required is a gradual introduction and plenty of patience from that point on, and the rest is up to the individual. You will discover that you made the correct option throughout your transition… and that you are proud of your new family member!
How to Introduce a New Puppy to the Resident Cat
Documentation Download Documentation Download Documentation Introducing your new puppy to your current cat is likely to be a traumatic event for both animals; but, if it is done correctly, both pets may be kept secure and relatively calm while a healthy bond is developed between the two of them. Make careful to separate the animals as soon as possible. After that, make brief, leash-assisted introductions. Permitting the animals to interact unattended should only be done when they are entirely comfortable in each other’s company.
- 1 Create a secure area for your cat or dog to roam around in. Both your puppy and your cat require a space where they can acclimate to their new surroundings. You don’t want to impose a meeting on someone straight immediately. Make sure to give your dogs special attention and care throughout the first few days.
- Generally speaking, you should restrict your new pet at first, which means you should keep your puppy in a separate room before allowing her to walk about the home
- Make sure the area is well-stocked with food, water, and toys before allowing her to roam around the house. Make sure to spend lots of time with your new dog while she is getting used to her new surroundings.
- 2 Change the animal that is being held captive. You should rotate which animal is kept in confinement.. This will allow them each an opportunity to look about the house. They can also acquire accustomed to the odours of one another and become progressively comfortable with the idea that a new animal has entered the scene.
- Every several hours, turn the animals around. Even while it is vital for the puppy to be able to get out of the room and explore a little, you should not give her free reign of the home just yet, since this may cause problems with potty training later on. If you have a large dog, divide the space in which she is confined into two or three rooms and keep an eye out for evidence of toileting. When the animals are not confined, they can interact through the front door. Depending on the situation, your dog may sniff or paw at the door. In most cases, this is OK
- But, if your puppy is pawing at the door excessively, you should address the habit. This might generate tension in your cat, which can result in a messed-up introduction.
- s3 Smells are exchanged. It is critical that the dog and the cat become acquainted to one other’s scent as soon as possible. Small pieces of bedding, such as pillows or blankets, can be swapped out. You may also trade in your toys. Rub one animal’s back with a towel while putting the towel beneath the other animal’s food dish
- 4 When no one is home, keep the animals in a restricted space. Before making numerous effective face-to-face introductions with your dogs, you should never leave them unattended
- When no one is home, be certain that both the dog and the cat are safely confined to different places
- And Alternatively, you may choose to crate train your puppy and keep her safely contained while you are away, while leaving the cat free freedom of the house (since he is presumably already at ease in the home)
- If you confine the cat to a single room while you are away, make certain that he has access to a litter box.
- 1 Select an appropriate place for the first meeting. After a few days, you may begin introducing the animals to the group. This should be done in the comfort of your own residence. When it comes to dogs, it is common practice to introduce them in a neutral setting. Taking a cat outside the house, on the other hand, might generate stress in the cat.
- Select a room in your house where you will make the introduction. Make sure the space is large enough for both animals to be comfortable contained on opposite ends of the room at first.
- 2 Introduce yourself to the puppy while holding it by the leash. If you can, wait until your puppy has exhausted herself with play and exercise before doing this, as she will be less rowdy around the cat. Allow the cat to enter the room while still holding the leash. Allow the animals to exchange glances with one another.
- You may have feelings of dread or hostility. The animals will snarl at one another if you move too quickly, while the cat will bat at the puppy if you go too slowly. Repeat the process by returning to the separation phase for a few more days and trying again
- Have a favorite toy or reward on hand to divert the puppy’s attention if she is becoming overly interested in the cat. It is important that you keep your puppy on a leash for the whole first encounter. You have to take it slow when it comes to uncontrolled touch. A cat might be seriously injured by an overexcited puppy.
- 3 Maintain a schedule of regulated, brief meetings. Begin with brief interactions and progressively increase the length of time spent together. Remember to pay attention to each pet, show affection, and provide prizes for being calm.
- Make every effort to conclude meetings on a positive note. In the event that neither animal is acting aggressively and they have been in the same room for a few minutes, this is an appropriate time to conclude the meeting for the day. As time progresses, the cat should gain greater self-assurance, and the puppy should grow increasingly indifferent in the cat.
- 4 Continue to engage with the puppy while on a leash until he is relaxed. The length of time it will take will be determined largely on the temperament of both animals. The calmness of some dogs and cats may come fast, while others will take longer to settle down.
- When the puppy enters the room, your cat should remain calm. He should be unafraid to eat, drink, and use the litter box without hesitation
- Your puppy should be mainly unconcerned in the cat at this point. She should try to ignore the cat as much as possible and pay attention to other things. As soon as both animals have reached this stage, you may allow them to be in the same room without having to restrain the puppy.
- 1 Consistently recognize and reward positive conduct. Dogs who chase or disturb cats are sometimes subjected to harsh punishment or ridicule by their owners. While this may appear to be beneficial, it might really be counterproductive and result in a stressful scenario, prompting your puppy to grow aggressive towards the cat. Instead of penalizing your puppy’s poor behaviors, focus on reinforcing his or her positive actions
- Always give your puppy a treat when he or she is calm and obedient around the cat. When your puppy ignores the cat in the room, reward him with goodies and praise
- Have a small bag of snacks on available for such occasions. Recognize and encourage your puppy’s positive behavior whenever she demonstrates it.
- 2 If the puppy becomes obsessed on the cat, distract her with something else. If your puppy becomes a nuisance to the cat, it is preferable to divert her rather than punish her. Locate an appropriate diversion to divert your puppy’s attention away from her bothersome behavior toward the cat.
- Use food, a joyful voice, or a toy to divert your dog when she looks to be troubling the cat
- As soon as the dog leaves the cat alone, offer her a treat as a reward
- Take note of any hostile actions that may occur. You should use extreme caution when allowing your dog and cat to interact. A physical encounter between two animals can be dangerous, since both animals may suffer injuries as a result. If you observe indicators of aggressiveness, take action as soon as possible.
- It is a symptom of hostility when a puppy is excessively fixated on the cat to the point that she is unable to shift her gaze away from the cat. Whenever a cat starts growling or hissing, it is showing indications of hostility. If the animals are getting hostile toward each other, separate them immediately. You don’t want to be involved in a scuffle
- 4 For at least a month, do not allow unsupervised encounters to take place. You should only ever let your animals alone with one another when they have been completely used to one another. Always provide a method for each animal to get some alone time. Cat doors, doggy doors, high shelves, or a little recess are all possibilities for providing the animals with their own place. A minimum of one month will elapse before supervised contacts are deemed safe.
- Depending on the temperament of your animals, you may require a longer period of time than a month. Do not leave them alone unattended until they have become largely indifferent to one another.
- 1Check with a veterinarian to ensure that both pets are in good health. A medical condition might cause the introduction process to be slowed or made more difficult. Before trying an introduction, make sure both of your pets have been examined by a veterinarian to ensure they are in good health. 2 Make sure your cat has a safe haven where he or she may hide. Cats require their own area in order to be content. While welcoming a new puppy into the family, make sure your cat has somewhere to hide. a place to hide Hostility may become more pronounced if your cat believes he has no personal space
- Make an investment in something like a cat condo. A safe environment for your cat is likely to exist there
- You should also make certain that your cat has access to several perches throughout your home. Clear a shelf on your bookcase so that your cat may get access to it.
- 3Consider seeking expert assistance. If the introduction does not go smoothly, a professional animal trainer should be hired. Some pups or cats are more difficult to teach than others, and this is due to their personalities. A experienced trainer can assist you in smoothing over any behavioral issues you may be experiencing. Advertisement
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- Generally speaking, the more activity the puppy receives before to an interaction, the less likely she will be to try to play with your cat. Your puppy’s response time to basic commands will increase your chances of having a successful introduction. When your animals come into contact, you can place a huge laundry basket over a little puppy. In this way, the cat feels more secure in the presence of the dog. The cat can smell the dog, but it will not harm it.
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- Never leave your dogs alone together if you have any doubts about whether or not they are both ready to be left alone
- No matter how carefully you introduce your puppy to your cat, there is always a danger that your cat may not tolerate your puppy. The personalities of some dogs and cats are just a bad combination
About This Article
Summarized from the articleXTo introduce a new puppy to a resident cat, begin by wiping a towel over one animal and placing it beneath the other animal’s food bowl, and vice versa, so that both animals may become accustomed to the smell of the other. Afterwards, only introduce the animals when your puppy is exhausted from playing and keep it on a leash so that it doesn’t accidentally hurt the cat. Keep them in the same room for a few minutes at start, and then gradually increase the length of time they spend together.
Continue reading for advice from our Veterinary reviewer on how to determine whether it is safe to keep your dogs together alone.
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Introducing a new puppy or kitten to your current pets is a simple process.
It’s becoming more and more common these days for households to have more than one pet, often resulting in multiple cats and/or dogs living under one roof. Whilst cat and dogs can often become great friends, if they get off on the wrong foot then their relationship might end up being a little less ‘Homeward Bound’ and a little more ‘Tom and Jerry’! To help with this, we have put together some tips on how to introduce a new puppy or kitten to your existing pet(s).
During this section, we will discuss some of the tools you may require while introducing a new puppy or kitten to your existing animals.
- Litter trays: If you want to have numerous cats in your home, it is advisable to get multiple litter trays in order to avoid any potential territorial disputes. To be on the safe side, it’s best to have one litter tray for each cat, plus one extra. Feeding time: In the same vein, make sure that each pet has his or her own food bowl. For the sake of avoiding arguments, you should feed them separately (at least at first). A secure location: In order to create a private, safe location for both your existing pet and your new arrival, where they may hide if they get afraid, it will be necessary to set up a secure area. If you have a new kitten or puppy, a spare room is an excellent place to put them at first
- As they gain confidence, they may gradually explore the rest of the house. The same is true for your existing pet
- Relocate all of its necessary necessities (food, water, a bed, and a litter box) to a separate place that is exclusively for them to avoid confusion. Even the most confident pets may get upset by the introduction of a new puppy or kitten, so providing easy access to these essentials away from the new puppy or kitten may help to alleviate the stress associated with the transition. Making sure that your cat has access to a variety of high locations may also be a useful advice, as they will frequently feel safer when they are able to see the activity from a higher vantage point. The usage of stair gates is particularly useful for dividing spaces and keeping dogs upstairs or downstairs
- They are also useful for early face-to-face interactions since pets can see and smell each other without being able to approach each other. Given how little certain young kittens and puppies are, stair gates may not always be suited for face-to-face interactions with them since they may be able to slide between the bars of the gate. The use of dog cages in these situations is a terrific solution. Create an environment in which your kitten may become accustomed to the crate by placing it in a room that has been designated for them and providing it with a litter tray, a bed, a water dish, and some hiding spots. When you do this, the kitten will become accustomed to going in and out of the crate, and the crate itself will not be a source of further stress when it comes to introducing them to your other pets. When it comes to puppies, many people will be planning to crate train them anyhow, and if they aren’t, there is another excellent reason to consider it. Lines for the house: House lines are similar to short leads that are meant to stay on the puppy without the dog recognizing that they are there. For the most part, the lead will merely trail behind them, although it can be pulled up if the puppy becomes very enthusiastic. These are excellent teaching tools, and they may be particularly effective for introducing puppies to your current dog or cat population.
Getting started – the power of smell!
In addition to supplying information about their surroundings and any other animals in the vicinity, scent is a very crucial sense for cats and dogs, as many people are well aware. Most likely, your existing pet and your new addition will be aware of each other long before they ever meet for the first time. This implies that you may start to get them habituated to one other even before their first meeting by utilizing the power of smell to your advantage! Once they’ve arrived, we recommend that you keep your new puppy or kitten isolated from your old pet for the first several days to ensure a smooth transition.
During this moment, you can assist the process by engaging in a practice known as’scent exchanging. There are various options for accomplishing this:
- Stroke each pet one by one, without cleaning your hands between each one
- Change their bedding on a regular basis. Wipe the top of your new pet’s head with a soft cloth, and then use the cloth to disseminate their aroma around the house by rubbing it on furniture, carpets, and other surfaces. Provide opportunities for your new pet to explore the rest of the house during the first few days/weeks while your old pet is not there.
Your new and current pets will begin to learn more about one another as a result of this process, and they will not be complete strangers the first time they meet face to face!
Stop and think…
All right, so you’ve set up your safe zones, such as stair gates and dog cages; and you’ve been scent exchanging over the previous few days or weeks; and it’s almost time for your pets to meet for the first time! Be sure to think about how your existing pet will react to the new additions before introducing them to them. If you already have a cat, do you know if it has had any past interactions with other animals? Does the individual have a fear of dogs since they’ve been pursued by them before, or do they have a laid-back personality who is unlikely to blink an eyelid at the arrival of a new housemate?
You can plan out their introductions and determine how fast or slowly to move things forward if you give them some thought.
This is where things grow a bit more complicated depending on the kind of pet you are considering bringing into your home; we’ll go through each of these potential scenarios one by one.
Introducing a new kitten to a cat
Despite the fact that they are members of the same species, introducing a new kitten and an older cat may be a challenging procedure that must be done with care and consideration. In certain conditions, it is appropriate to:
- Ensure that both cats are in good health and that their vaccines are up to date. Keep the kitten in a kennel for the time being, and let the adult cat to approach at his or her convenience. Make no attempt to coerce the adult cat towards approaching
- Maintain a clear path back to the adult cat’s “safe spot,” and provide the kitten with places to hide in the crate in case they get afraid. Food can be used to divert the attention of both cats during the initial contacts. This will also aid in the creation of a favorable association in the minds of each animal. You should distract or separate the cats if any of them becomes violent
- This is an indication that you should proceed with caution and take things gently. It’s important not to let the cats fight since their claws and fangs can cause catastrophic injury to a young kitten (or an adult cat!). In our last discussion, we noted that each cat should have his or her own place in different sections of the house. Allow the kitten to explore more and more of the house as they grow more comfortable with one another, enabling their territories to overlap and eventually merge into one
- As they become more familiar with one another
Introducing a new puppy to a cat
This is the circumstance that has the potential to be the most challenging of all the ones we will discuss. When it comes to puppies, they are frequently exuberant and noisy; when it comes to cats, (at the risk of upsetting the cat-lovers out there), they can be uneasy and antisocial. If the issue is handled incorrectly, it has the potential to be quite stressful for your cat. Here are a few pointers to keep in mind:
- Consider taking your puppy for a lengthy walk (or a strenuous session of playing!) before the meeting in order to ensure that they will be more calm
- Begin with placing your puppy behind a stairgate and on a leash (it is critical that they are not allowed to pursue your cat! )
- Then, gradually increase the distance between you and your dog. Provide your cat with a clear path that will allow them to return to their “safe area.” Keep some snacks on hand to give to your dog when he exhibits good behavior. Make use of food to divert their interest at first so that your cat may have a good look without being distracted by too much unwanted attention Allow your cat to approach at his or her own pace
- Do not force your cat to get closer at any moment. Keep these contacts brief at initially, and terminate them if things get too stressful for either pet. Unless your cat is becoming hostile as they move closer to the puppy, refrain from allowing them to swipe at the puppy. However, while a fast smack on the nose might be an efficient learning technique, cats’ claws can do significant harm, particularly to the eyes. As your pets become more used to one other, gradually lengthen the duration of their encounters with one another. Hopefully, with each effort, your cat’s confidence will rise and your puppy’s calmness will increase.
Introducing a new puppy to a dog
Introducing a new puppy to an existing dog is frequently less difficult than introducing a new puppy to a cat; still, this procedure must be managed carefully to avoid any potential injury to either of the dogs. In this case, the following is true:
- Ensure that both dogs are in good health and that their vaccines are up to date. Make sure to put away your existing dog’s favorite toys and anything else that they could become overly attached to. Try to introduce your new dog in a ‘neutral location,’ or at the very least one that your old dog is unlikely to get very possessive about. Make certain that the meeting location offers both dogs with an escape route in the event that they become fearful. In most cases, keeping both pups on a leash and at a safe distance would be sufficient
- However, if you have any worries about the temperament of either dog, it would be prudent to utilize a crate or a stair gate to provide additional safety. Keep snacks on hand to divert the attention of both dogs if required, as well as to praise excellent behavior. They should be allowed to sniff each other and even play with each other if that is what they want to do. You should keep a tight watch on them and keep any encounters light, using the goodies to divert their attention if things get too violent. Maintain your composure. Dogs have the ability to detect when you are feeling uneasy, and this has the potential to make them feel anxious. Keep these interactions brief, and gradually expand their duration as both dogs get more comfortable with one another.
Introducing a new kitten to a dog
In most cases, the process of welcoming a new kitten into the family can be done in the same manner as welcoming a new puppy into the family may be done, with some minor differences:
- Take special precautions. When compared to puppies, kittens are frequently smaller and more delicate, and any bite (even an unintentional one) can be extremely hazardous and even deadly to them. It is recommended to keep the kitten in a crate for the first few months of its life. Keep the dog under strict supervision at all times, especially in the beginning
- They may be more prone to try to chase a kitten if they are not properly trained. To begin with, keep the dog at a safe distance because the kitten will have fewer escape routes and this might prove to be a terrifying experience for him. Allowing the dog and kitten to become closer and the interactions to become longer over time can eventually lead to removing the kennel when you believe the timing is right.
Becoming long term friends
In all of the scenarios listed above, it is critical to pay close attention to how things are progressing and to only allow things to develop at a pace that is comfortable for all animals involved. Watch every contact with your pets and never leave them alone until you are completely convinced that they will be safe. Even in such case, it is prudent to create escape routes and secure areas for each animal in case they decide to spend some time alone! This might include cat flaps and beds in high-traffic areas for cats, as well as dog beds or crates that are specifically allocated for dogs.
Never rush the procedure; instead, take your time and customize it to meet the specific needs of your dogs, keeping in mind their individual histories and personalities.
Are you preparing for the entrance of a new cat or puppy into the family? Look through this page for information on preparing for your new dog or kitten!
Meet the Author
James completed his studies at Cambridge University and immediately entered general practice as a small animal veterinarian. Throughout his life, James had a strong interest and love for nutrition, as well as its use in the treatment of sickness in small animals. Traveling, rugby, reading, and spending time with his cat are some of James’ favorite pastimes in his leisure time.