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Am i doing things right with my cat and new puppy?

Discussion in 'Dog Training and Behaviour' started by Rylee, Nov 5, 2012.


  1. Rylee

    Rylee PetForums Member

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    I'm after some advise. I have had my puppy maxi 5 weeks now and she chases my cat. The cat initially ran straight away every time which resulted in a chase, now she has learnt to hold her ground a bit but this results in maxi jumping on top of her and pinning her to the ground. This is all playful on maxi's part, not at all aggressive however she does like to use her teeth a bit too much with people and i don't want her to hurt my cat Rylee.

    I am working on keeping maxi under control when rylee is around, i will keep her calm and hold her gently so she can't get to rylee or i will tell her sit and give her treats to reward her being well behaved around rylee. If she does get too much she gets told no and gets a time out for a couple of minutes to calm down. Is this the right thing to do? does anyone have any other advice?

    I know Rylee would love her if only she didn't get too rough with her, rylee sits up high on a platform on top of her stratching post and will bat maxi on the nose playfully (never with claws out). She has hissed at her a couple of times but most of the time she doesn't put maxi in her place and i don't know why. When maxi visited my mums cats, one of which is scared of dogs, they both hissed at maxi and maxi then had a healthy respect for them and stayed away. I just wish she would respect rylee a bit more.

    I have been reading cesar millan's book about being a pack leader, i don't agree with his methods and i'm not reading it for that i'm more interested in the psychology of being a pack leader so if anyone has any other books on this subject to recommend that would be good.

    I have also read somewhere that by maxi jumping on top of rylee she is trying to dominate her, is this true? because i obviously don't want that.
     
  2. Sled dog hotel

    Sled dog hotel PetForums VIP

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    The problem could have started with the first initital meet. As soon as a cat runs away, it piques the dogs interest and makes the chasing and the game so much more fun and rewarding. The reason he is OK and learned respect with your Mums cats is they didnt run away and were not rewarding in fact the opposite Maxi got told in no uncertain terms, to get lost and its not going to be tolerated, so probably why the two differences because of the two initital meetings with both and the circumstances how the two cats dealt with it. Rylees efforts now are probably a case of too little too late, and the more he rough houses with Rylee the more its rewarding and a really good game.
    So he just carries on regardless of her efforts.

    Deffinately carry on with what you are doing keeping control when they are together, praising and treating for non chasing calm behaviour and for alternative behaviour you do want. Certainly teaching things like a good leave it command and getting her to leave and come to you instead and ignore the cat is a good move too.

    Often the most common way to introduce cats and dogs is to prior crate train the dog so they are happy and relaxed in the crate, and then introduce the cat for short sessions building them up in time, that way they get used to sharing space and ignoring each other more, and as the cat feels safe and the dog cant chase you dont get into the fleeing, chase rewarding for the dog cycle.

    Usually from there you progress to having the dog on lead and letting the cat in for short sessions and building them up, so again the cat doesnt feel the need to flee and the dog cant chase and is under control, rewarding and prasing the dog for calm behaviour and get them used to sharing the same space that way.

    The best book you can get is a good training book, and then do regular daily training sessions a few times a day mixed with a bit of play teaching the basics,
    that way you can keep a lot of control by using various commands and getting the dog to comply with them. Joining a good structured training class is a good idea too for socialisation and doing training with distractions. If you want to consider this Welcome to APDT - Association of Pet Dog Trainers UK is one organisation that should find a trainer and classes in your area. Also you do need to control the situation as although the cat may be swiping without claws out if she starts too a few pups have ended up with damaged eyes that way too.
     
    #2 Sled dog hotel, Nov 5, 2012
    Last edited: Nov 5, 2012
  3. Rylee

    Rylee PetForums Member

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    I think the problem started before i go maxi. At the breeders there were kittens and when there i saw some of her litter mates playing with them which was the puppies and kittens rolling around on the floor which seems like what she is trying to do to rylee but rylee is not used to dogs so doesn't want this.

    If it is just play and not aggressive will it calm down as she gets older?
     
  4. ouesi

    ouesi Guest

    What size dog is Maxi?

    I'm pretty strict with my danes and the cats because the danes are well, huge. But the cats are dog savvy and perfectly able to hold their own with smaller dogs. In fact our older cat would bully and push around a lab we used to dog sit. It was pretty funny...

    What you're doing sounds fine, reward what you like, manage and prevent what you don't.

    As for books, instead of Millan, try Patricia McConnell's "The Other End of the Leash" for how to be a leader to your dog. I also love Suzanne Clothier's "Bones Would Rain from the Sky". Those two are my vote for must haves for dog owners :)
    Jean Donaldson's "The Culture Clash" is another great book but its a bit off putting for some folks, Donaldson can be kind of obnoxious even if she is right :D
     
  5. Sled dog hotel

    Sled dog hotel PetForums VIP

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    Probably he sees Rylee then just as another playmate, however if Rylee is not liking it then its not really fair to her, especially if its her first real dog experience. If she isnt up to the job of giving him boudaries like your mums cats, then its going to be down to you to teach him through training and commands Im afraid. If he gets over excited and starts getting rougher and biting harder and also depending on what breed he is too and what size he will get too, then he could inadvertently hurt her, or if she does get her claws out he could end up with an injured eye. Even when Ive brought pups in to an exsiting adult pack they are not left alone, and only supervised play for a very short time, as even with dogs because of the size ratio difference to an adult and a pup and rough play even a pup could get hurt by accident with a much larger hearvier powerful dog even if it is all just play. Some breeds too play a lot roughter then others do.
     
  6. Rylee

    Rylee PetForums Member

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    Thanks for the book recommendations i will look into getting them.

    Maxi is a jack russell cross with long legs and is now about as tall as Rylee, i think i am just going to need to make sure i supervise them together constantly, no being lazy on the sofa when rylee walks into the room!
     
  7. Luz

    Luz PetForums VIP

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    Good Luck with it all. We got our first pup in July and second in October. They too want to play with the cat but he is twice their size. Wally mainly lives in the conservatory and we have kept them apart a lot apart from supervised visits. We are now making a concerted effort to bring Wally into the main house more as otherwise he will always be a 'novelty' to the pups. He seems fairly tolerant but definitely doesn't want to play!
     
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