Dogs and cats are said to be enemies but this is not true. A survey in 2002 said that over fifteen percent of every household in the United States had one dog or one cat at the very least. The survey also stated that almost fifty percent of each home that included a dog or cat actually had both a cat and a dog. That meant that half of all the dogs and cats in the world shared a home with the other species.
Behavior Issues Do Exist
Just because many families have a cat and a dog does not mean that there are no behavioral problems. Some family pets have fights that the owners have to break up and some even take their issues to a behavior consultant for assistance with these issues.
It is very rare that a dog will be scared of a cat because of its size compared to the cat, but many people allow their dog to bully their cat. There are some cases where the dog is smaller than the cat. In these cases the smaller pet may spend most of its time in fear. Often these pets spend the day hiding in the basement or under a bed. This can cause chronic illnesses and anxiety.
You should provide a safe, friendly introduction for the two species to keep their relationship friendly and healthy. If you have existing pets that are in fear of one another you should try to reintroduce them, if you are adding a new pet to your home you should start the relationship out on the right foot.
Things to Consider when Providing an Introduction
You need to decide which of the two pets are considered to be the main pet in your home. You then need to ask your self these kind of questions. What kind of past does this animal have with the other species? Have they ever been with the other species? How did they react when they were around the other species? This will help you to pick the right cat for your dog or the other way around.
The dog or cat you are thinking about bringing home, is it a friendly animal towards different types of animals? It is best to be on the cautious side when it comes to your cat. It's better to think your dog would injure the cat rather than the cat injuring the dog. You should take caution even if the new dog is said to be friendly with other cats. They are going to get a little bit territorial and we don't want anyone to get hurt.
When you introduce the animals to each other you need to have enough man power to keep both pets safe. You should keep your dog on a leash for the first introduction, and keep your cat under your control as well. Allow the pets to sniff each other, allow them to be near each other, but do not allow them to try to take over the situation. You need to make sure BOTH species knows you are the boss and they are guests in this situation. Do not allow either to be hurt. Let them know they are both there by choice but the choice is yours, not theirs. In the end spending some time with the two pets letting them get to know each other shouldn't take long and will save your family a lot of problems.
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