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Dogs and Cats can Coexist

Updated on December 20, 2017
Stacie L profile image

Stacie L has raised many pets and had some cats live into the twenties. She also ran a successful pet sitting service.

Pet friendships

Dogs can live with cats and cats can live with dogs. Some people think that these pets are natural enemies. The fact that Fido evolved from the ferocious gray wolf because early humans bred away their vicious nature.

The modern day kitty is believed to evolve from an African wild cat so it has some of its' vicious ancestral traits as well. The thought of having both living in the same home frightens those who are misinformed. They may be unfriendly outside of a home environment or in the wild, but living together is another story.

Myths

The media and movies have been responsible for the misinformation about pets. The cat is often described as being aloof, sneaky and cunning. They can't be trusted and will scratch your eyes out when you are asleep. Yes, those sentiments are still uttered by people in my community.

On the other hand, dogs are said to to be trustworthy, loyal, good hunters and will guard the house. The fact is, any cat has the same traits and characteristics. Although they cannot scratch out your eyes, they can be quiet, cunning and just as sneaky. Just ask anyone that left a sandwich on the coffee table.

My experience with both cats and dogs

I can tell anyone from my experience that dogs and cats can get along in the same home. They may behave like little children at times, with sibling rivalry, but it is doable.

I have made it known in previous hubs that I do prefer felines but I like and have lived with both. The way they are introduced to the each other are very important considerations.

The size of each, the ages of both canine and feline, their previous owners, health issues, children in the home, time spent with them and etc.

One other consideration to take into effect is your present living situation.If you are renting or own a home. If you are transferred every so many months for your job or if you are in the military, will have some definite results. I've moved many times as a child and some pets do not handle this very well.

in other words, there are many variables to take into consideration before placing these pets in the same home. My pets were haphazardly placed into our home of four children and two parents. They were usually found on the street and some stayed a few weeks but most for many years. Introducing a new cat to a group of established cats takes a lot of patience. Add a dog or two to the mix and it will feel like Wrestle mania every hour.

cat and dog living on boat
cat and dog living on boat

Introduce pets carefully

There are definite ways to introduce a new pet to a home with older or established pets. It will take more time so don't rush the process.

The established pet will have dominance issues and first try to run off the new pet. Dogs will try to bite and chase the cat, or a cat will scratch a nosy dog.

My home had 4 cats and two dogs when we adopted another one. The poor newcomer had to endure sniffing , and snarling when he ventured too close to their food bowls. The other felines screamed and spit when he walked into a room. And, they chased him out of the yard whenever they all went outside. It's a wonder he stayed at all!.

Points to Remember

Here are some useful points to keep in mind when introducing a new cat or dog.

  • Spread some blankets and other items around the house with the new pet's scent on it.

  • Watch the reactions of the established pets when they smell the new scent

  • bring the new pet in gradually,in short 5-15 minute increments

  • let the newcomer smell the other pets scents from their belongings

  • bring the newcomer into the home such as one room,at a time

  • introduce a new pet such as a dog to the cat or the other way around for 5 minutes

  • gradually increase the time the two pets are together. Only do this with one at a time

  • depending on the reactions of the other pets, bring the cat into the dogs space and sit to watch

  • or bring the dog into the cats space and watch the interaction

  • don't make a fuss over the new pet

true love!cat and dog love each other
true love!cat and dog love each other | Source

Summary

The thought of these vastly different species co-habitating peacefully together is unthinkable to some. Dogs and cats are thought to be natural enemies. I don't think this is true and only in extreme cases, such they be taken out of the home.

Dogs and cats can be friends and live in the same home. As stated before, the variables such as the number of other pets and types, ages, health issues, number of children in the home and time for the pets are all important considerations.

I don't recommend introducing a young kitten to an old cat or dog. This only upsets them as they think you are no longer want them.

With much patience and understanding, dogs and cats can be friends.

Dogs and Cats in Same House

Do you or did you raise dogs and cats together?

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© 2012 Stacie L

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