When introducing your new cat to resident dogs in your household, please try to remember that they’re in a new environment, with new smells and people, so they may be scared at first. Follow our tips for a successful Dog to Cat introduction.
Find a quiet room in your house (a bedroom or bathroom) where you can keep your cat safely separated from the resident dog for a few days and it can be easily accessed by all human family members for social interactions and playtime, and that it is set up with food, water, litter, toys and soft beds.
Across a few days, rotate which animal has freedom and which is confined to allow each animal plenty of time to investigate the other one’s scent.
The dog should be confined to a crate or another room to allow the cat time to roam free and investigate the smell of the dog.
If the dog obsessively digs at the separation barrier or barks at the cat for more than a day or two, the interaction likely won’t work without proper training. You may need the help of a professional.
When no one is home, the dog or cat must always be securely confined so unsupervised interactions are not possible.
Once the dog is calm (or at least not obsessed with the cat) and the cat is calm, eating and using the litter box normally, you can allow both animals to be in the same room at the same time, but keep the dog securely leashed.
Continue with this type of introduction until the dog is calm and ignores the cat, and the cat is calm, eating and using the litter box normally.
If there is any fear or aggression displayed on either animal’s part, go back to confinement and repeat.
Continue indefinitely until both the dog and cat seem happy and relaxed around each other.
When no one is home, the dog or cat must be securely confined so unsupervised interactions aren’t possible.
Unsupervised time together can occur after the cat and dog have been supervised around each other for a significant period of time (a month or so) and you are positive they will not hurt each other.
If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us.