Although there is a myth that cats and dogs are irreconcilable species, the truth is that both can perfectly coexist in our homes. In this article we are going to give advice to make coexistence satisfactory for everyone.
Index of contents
- 1 The relationship between cats and dogs
- 2 Preparing the home
- 3 The first contact
- 4 Getting to know each other
- 5 Warning signs
The relationship between cats and dogs
The first thing to keep in mind is that between kittens and puppies there is usually no problem And the most common is that, if we present them as children, they live together without having to apply any special measure.
In the same way we must know that there are cats that do not tolerate dogs and dogs that, by system, chase and attack dogs.
If we have verified that our pet acts in this way, it is not prudent that we introduce another pet and, if we have to, we must have the support of a professional directly.
These are extreme cases, in general it is possible to make dogs and cats coexist, as we will see.
Preparing the home
Although we may be lucky enough to find an especially sociable cat or dog that accepts other animals without having to make any special presentation, the truth is that, especially if we talk about cats, it will be more common for us to have to progressively adapt .
For this we can dip into pheromones, which are substances that we will find on the market in various presentations and that have a calming effect.
There are for dogs and cats. Before introducing a new animal we can start using them, especially if we have a cat at home since they tend to get stressed with changes.
We also have to prepare a room where the newcomer can be installed at first so that the meetings take place gradually.
The first contact
The most important advice when introducing a dog and a cat is that we are completely calm.
Both animals can you notice if we’re nervous, which will also alter them and that could lead to conflicts. Of course, we will always have to be present since, if the reaction is bad, the animals could get hurt.
In fact, until the relationship between the two is consolidated, we should not leave them together without supervision. It is also key that the first contact is not forced.
If we have a cat and we come home with a dog we can show him his space but not go find the cat, but wait for him to come. In general you will prefer to approach when the dog is still.
He will smell it and, very likely, will snort and leave. This can be a good start and we can conclude the first meeting. On the other hand, if we have a dog and introduce a cat, it is best to install it directly in its room, where we can include a blanket or towel used by the dog so that the cat adapts to its smell.
Then we can enter with the dog, better subject on the leash, with the cat raised to a certain height and with the possibility of running away, since they feel safer if they can observe from above.
As in the previous case, it is normal for both animals to smell each other and for the cat to buff, which does not usually have major consequences.
Getting to know each other
If the first contact has been satisfactory, we can repeat it. It is normal for the cat’s snorts to follow or for the dog to try to sniff the cat a little roughly. They also have to know and set their own limits.
We will always be close in case it is necessary to separate them. The encounters may become more frequent until we leave both animals free around the house.
At that time it is recommended that the cat has furniture through which to walk if it does not want to be within reach of the dog. We should also leave their food in a high place to prevent the dog from eating it.
Similarly, the dog cannot have access to the litter box to avoid coprophagy and make the cat uncomfortable, which could cause removal problems in unsuitable places.
If the cat was first these changes in its accessories must be gradual. At first, we should leave them apart again when we go out. Hopefully soon we will see them sleeping together, licking, rubbing and even playing.
We have said that a cat snort is expected but if we see that it adopts a threatening attitude, with its ears back, its mouth open and its hair standing on end, it’s time to get the dog out of your sight.
In the same way, a dog that stares at the cat while it remains still and begins to growl and show its teeth is warning us that it is about to attack.
They are extreme and minor cases, but if in each encounter we try we obtain this reaction, we should consult a professional specialized in animal behavior and, above all, never force contact or leave the animals together because the risk of attack is very high.