Sometimes it can be hard for cats and dogs to get along. You have to have realistic expectations when you decide to introduce the two. I have some useful tips below on how to introduce a cat to a dog for the first time. Of course, there are many factors that go into the success of the meeting.
If you introduce a kitten to a dog they probably will be ok and attach to the dog easily. They will most likely enjoy the companionship. Now if you have an older cat who hasn’t been around other animals, especially a dog, it might take a little work to get your cat okay with the idea of the new dog. Or your cat might surprise you and have instant success!
How to Introduce a Cat To A Dog
Say you are getting a new dog and you are planning on them coming a certain day. Consider swapping sleeping blankets so your cat and the new dog both have the smell of each other, so it isn’t as big of a shock at the first meeting.
Exercise Dog First
Whether it’s a puppy or full grown dog make sure to exercise and feed your dog beforehand. I say this so your dog isn’t as hyper when it meets your cat. This can help a lot, as dogs are more excitable while cats are generally mellow. This can turn your cat off.
From a Distance
Let the dog and cat be in the same room together but keep the distance. Just see how each of them reacts by being in close quarters. If they seem ok you can then move them closer to each other. Just make sure neither animal is displaying fear or aggressive behavior.
If they seem anxious, separate them into different rooms and repeat this a few times a day. In this way, they can begin to get used to each other.
Make sure your dog is on a leash so you can grab the dog if a problem arises. Also, make sure the cat has places he/she can run and hide if they feel scared or threatened. Being able to manage both animals is important, you might even have a family member or friend help while you get the two acquainted
Can Take Time
Just make sure not to rush things or force the two to be in close proximity. If you force it, any issues may be magnified. If they have a really bad first meeting they won’t forget it.
Doesn’t Always Work
Sadly not every single time you bring home a new pet will it work out. Keep in mind that you can only do so much. If you look for expert help and still find no success you might have to consider getting rid of one of your pets. I generally recommend if you are getting a new pet, ask for a trial period so if it doesn’t work you can take him/her back and they can rehome.
Do you have other tips on how to introduce a cat to a dog? We’d love to hear them!