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NO SUCH THING AS IMPOSSIBLE
Integrating Your
Dog With A Cat
Alana Stevenson
Often when a person brings a new
dog or cat into the family, if they
already have other animals, mayhem
ensues. Introducing dogs and cats to
each other can take time, but they
can coexist happily together. Many
dogs are quite gentle with cats.
Other dogs need some training, and
still others, need more management.
Unfortunately, when people
introduce dogs to cats, and vice
versa, the usual scenario is the dog
chases the cat, and the poor cat
ends up hiding, and subsequently
living in the bedroom, spare room or
basement. This is unnecessary and
not fair to either animal, especially
your cat. Your cat should not be and
does not have to be relegated to a
basement. Below are some helpful
tips to follow when introducing a dog
and a cat to each other.
If you have a dog who is shy, fearful or
timid and a cat who is aggressive, territorial
or confident, reverse some of the below
instructions. Modify them so your dog gets
some preferential treatment. Interrupt and
prevent your cat from becoming aggressive
to your dog, and reward your cat for being
friendly to your dog.
Designate a room or location in the house
that is entirely your cat’s territory or
domain. Your dog is not allowed in this If you frequently wear a certain perfume, dog. Make sure your cat gets top notch
area. cologne or lotion, rub it on your hands. spaces, places and your attention.
Then pet your animals. You can spray your
Your dog should not have access to litter perfume or cologne on a cloth and wipe Exercise your dog before introducing your
boxes or to your cat’s food. In addition, your dog and cat with it. This way you can dog to your cat! If your dog has just run
your cat should not be forced to dodge create a “communal” scent. Odor is very four or five miles or has been on a long
your dog or pass your dog to get to his or important to animals. If they smell similar to hike, your dog will probably be less
her food bowl or litter tray. each other, they may bond to each more energetic and hopefully a bit calmer when
quickly. meeting your cat. Do not introduce your
Make sure your cat has extra hiding spots dog to your cat when your dog is too
and places to climb to escape from your Let your dog and cat get used to each energetic or has not been exercised.
dog. Invest in a few good cat trees or cat others' smells and sounds through a closed
condos. Cats love them. door. Reward your dog for showing calm Use a front-clip body harness when
behaviour. Also, treat and feed your cat introducing your dog to your cat and make
Perhaps investigate using a synthetic when your dog is nearby. When your dog is sure to have your dog on a lead. This will
pheromone to calm and soothe your cat. calmer and more mild-mannered around give you more control over your dog. It will
your cat, your cat will relax around your prevent your dog from chasing your cat
14 K9MAGAZINE
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