1st October 2011, 04:14 AM
Puppies and cats
I know I have posted about this before, but does anyone have any ideas on how to make a puppy behave with a 4 year old cat. I had this fantasy idea in my head when we got Sonny that he and Nico would be best friends and just snuggle and run around together. For the most part they are doing okay together. I KNOW that Sonny is just playing and not trying to be mean, but he bites Nico really hard and I feel bad for Nico. Sonny constantly has clumps of Nico's hair in his mouth. Nico can't lie on the floor next to the fire anymore or use his scratch post which has resulted in him using a chair because of fear that Sonny will attack. We tried the tactic of letting them work it out for themselves, but Nico lets him Sonny get away with a lot and then will let out a cry. Letting them work it out has worked to an extent because they will wrestle around during the day and I can see them both kind of testing boundaries and learning how far they can go. HOWEVER when Sonny is going through his crazy time of the day he gets too rough and I am scared of letting them go and Nico getting really upset or scared and scratching Sonny's eye. Do people who have had similar experience suggest I let them work it out on their own or should I separate them (we have been putting Nico in our bedroom, but that makes me sad because Nico is a very social cat) or put Sonny on a time out or spray Sonny's mouth with Tabasco or Bianca..... I'm just stumped... ANy help is appreciated.
1st October 2011, 04:44 AM
My pup (who is now 1 1/2 years) still wants to terrorize everyone. Not that he is mean. He is just SO full of energy. He is constantly bouncing off the walls playing.
I have found the more time we spend outside "working/playing" the better he is inside. I try to have him outside for 2+ hours. (broken up morning and evenings). He likes to play fetch and frisbee. In my opinion some Cavaliers REALLY need a lot of exercise! My friends Cavalier who is the same age as mine would be happy never leaving the couch. Not mine! He is constantly needing something to do.
I would try and take your pup outside to play before letting him interact with the kitty. Also make sure the cats nails are TRIMMED! Once puppy has had a nice long play I'm sure you will notice he is calmer with the kitty. You may need to keep them separated and supervise play time for a while. Make sure your kitty has plenty of high places he can go to avoid the puppy. I would highly discourage rough play right now. If puppy gets to rough separate them. Or even better that may be a good time take puppy outside (away from the situation) for a game of fetch? Just make sure not to reward the puppy for being too rough. Instead distract him away from the kitty 1st and then once he leaves the kitty alone head outside to play. Once puppy has burned off some energy give them time together again.
Give puppy LOTS of fun and interactive toys as well. Interactive toys will help distract puppy from the kitty when the puppy is feeling extra playful.
1st October 2011, 04:54 AM
I don't remember, how long have you had Sonny? I brought Jack home at ~3 months old and Penny was around 4 years old. I remember at first she would just hiss at him. I practiced sitting on the floor and petting them both ( I read somewhere that helps, although not sure if it did). Anyhow, I used to get so annoyed at Jack because being a puppy he would constantly chase her; the poor girl couldn't go anywhere without him trying to jump on her. My main concern was his eyes as I was afraid she would scratch them. I made sure she had plenty of high places to escape the wrath of Jack so this helped somewhat. I also began training Jack with the command "leave it" and with lots of practice in multiple settings I began to use it when he started bugging her. It really did work at least to distract him from the initial spur he got when he would see her walking across his path.
Then somewhere along the way, Jack grew up, grew on Penny and now they are best buds. I started to notice the change around when Jack was 7 months. I never thought it would happen. I still can't believe it when I see them sleeping together and licking/cleaning one another. Jack still has his moments and things can get rough sometimes when they play but Penny never ever uses her claws instead she nips at him which makes their fighting fair bc he nips right back. Some may say you can never trust a cat with a dog but I have no doubts leaving these two home alone.
I think until Sonny matures, just keep an eye on them to make sure nothing gets out of hand and have plenty of high places for the kitty to escape to if needed.
I know I didn't really offer much advice on what to do but wanted to let you know that I remember being in your shoes and thinking to myself will there ever be peace?. Thankfully it really did happen. I wish you luck and hope it happens for you too.
Penny's Mom, NYC
1st October 2011, 04:02 PM
1st October 2011, 04:12 PM
3rd October 2011, 11:28 PM
I would reward the dog (with treats) for being calm around the cat. And when you're not training him I would suggest you put a leash on the dog. (If the cat and the dog are in the same room). Your dog get's a BIG kick our out of chasing the cat and therefore you should never let him get away with it - you have to break the bad habbit as soon as possible.
Does the cat have some places where the dog can't reach it? (On the top of a cupboard, some shelfs at the wall, a large cat three.?). And maybe a children saftety door gate is an idea?
This is how you can train it. (If you ever want to see them snuggle together (and like eachother) the dog must respect the cat and the only way is to train him. The sooner the better..)
4th October 2011, 01:45 AM
4th October 2011, 04:16 PM
Very interesting all. My Bobby is 11 weeks and is living with my 2 persian cats who are 6 years old. At first they hissed at him, now they just stand their ground and give him a tap on the head if he corners them. If he chases them gently, I use 'leave it' and call him to play which works, but when he gets really crazy, I put him on his lead or, separate them or take him out. I haven't tried the treat idea yet, I think I will give that a go too. So far so good for me, I am worried that he may take a play bite at their long fur or tail one day and they may properly claw him for it so I think constant supervision is key to read the situation so you can step in if necessary and check that the cats have escape routes.
4th October 2011, 04:33 PM
Originally Posted by LJW
It is funny because my in-laws have a Siamese cat who doesn't really care for other animals and Sonny doesn't bother her at all. I think she hissed a couple of times at him and now he completely leaves her alone when we go over to their house to visit. It is like he knows she doesn't want to play with him. However Nico, our cat, always has loved playing with dogs. It is funny how animals know which animals they can play with and which they can not. Now Sonny just needs to know when play time is over and Nico doesn't want to play any more. I am hoping that slowly Sonny will learn that play time is over when Nico jumps to one of his high places. I think one of our biggest problems is that Nico likes to play and we just never know what is too rough, because they really romp around together and wrestle, but I guess most of it is just normal play. Nico has never hissed at Sonny, so I am assuming he hasn't ever felt truly threatened.
Keep me updated on your progress. We have similar ages of pets and it sounds like similar situations. Sonny is 15 weeks and my cat is 4 years old.