(Closed) Cat adjusting to my new puppy help!

posted 5 years ago in Pets
Post # 3
Member
242 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

Cats are picky animals. It’s going to be a while before she starts to warm up to you again. Don’t worry she will eventually she’ll get used to the puppy! You can try a Product called feel away. Basically it releases cat pheromones that only they can smell and helps calm and relax them it’s like a glade plug-in.

Post # 4
Member
2961 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: May 2014

Cats are extremely territorial and puppy is intruding on kitty’s territory. It is very important to restrict the puppy’s territory at the beginning and gradually expand it as the kitty gets used to the puppy.

 

 

 

As far as the kitty is concerned, you have betrayed the trust she has placed in you. It is also important NOT to gush over the puppy and let the kitty feel left out!  Give the kitty LOTS of attention and treats! Does the kitty favor one of you? Then let the other person care for the puppy as much as possible.

 

 

The introduction of new animals to a fail is always tricky. I am constantly amazed at how people simply dump new animals into the home and expect them to get along!

Eventually the kitty will come around.

 

 

 

Post # 5
Member
9074 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: December 2012

I’m going to be the advice you don’t want to hear.

 

Some cats will never adjust. We adopted a cat from a family friend a few years back. We had other cats & dogs, and she never adjusted. To this day (she’s 4 or 5 now, we got her when she was a smidgen less than a year) and she still growls and hisses at the dogs. The cats she doesn’t mind too much, but the dogs she has never liked.

As long as your cat has somewhere “safe” to go to away from the dog (Where the dog can’t reach/bother her) she should be okay.

Post # 6
Member
1177 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: June 2013

You should give her at least 6 months to adjust, and yes, it can easily take that long. Just putting them together isn’t really the best way to introduce new animals, but what’s done is done.

I’d suggest putting softcaps on her claws so if there are any spats, the puppy doesn’t get hurt.

Also, be sure to give her plenty of extra attention and treats.

Post # 7
Member
9142 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 2013 - St. Augustine Beach, FL

@LittleRedOwl:  It’s generally a better idea to get a puppy then a kitten.  Cats are not big fans of puppies.  I raised 3 kittens with my 2 year old dog and he was a little mother to them; it was so cute!

Make sure your cat is able to escape from the puppy and do not encourage the puppy to pester the cat.  Otherwise, it’s a crapshoot as to whether the cat will ever warm up to the puppy.  It may take 6 months to a year for them to find a happy medium.

Post # 8
Member
145 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: January 2015

I have to disagree with putting soft caps on her nails because she will feel much safer if she thiks she can protect herself. If she is attacking your dog and causeing a lot of harm you can think about it, but at that point I would consider her quality of life (she would have to be very unhappy to be attacking him). 

Try to give her private snuggle time with you or the both of you so that she feels like she is still important. Have SO take the pup in another room for a few hours or snuggle her when he is out for a walk. 

Make sure she is still eating, and if she isn’t make sure you give her a private spot to eat in. This is very important because cats can starve themselves when they are upset.

Good luck! Take things causiosly and follow your instincts, Things will probably get better, just show your kitty lots of love!

Post # 11
Member
2607 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: May 2009

How long has it been?  Time is going to be the most important factor here.  Your cat’s world has just been changed in a big way, and now you have to give her time to adjust.

Make sure you have at least one large cat tower for your cat.  She needs to have a place she can get to that the dog can’t get near her, and generally they feel more secure when they can be high up and surveying things from above as opposed to hiding behind the couch or under a bed.  The more places you can give her to get up off the floor, the better.  

Baby gates with the small little opening that can block the dog out of an area but still allow the cat to pass through are also helpful.  Babygates are also nice because they allow the cat and dog to see and smell each other, but keep them physically separate.  

MOST cats will adjust given time and good pet management, but a few never adjust.  Although the chances are small, you need to be prepared that this may not work out.  What will you do then?  You had the cat first, so your first priority needs to be to her.  So if she never accepts the puppy, (and GSDs are BIG dogs, especially when you are a small cat), are you prepared to keep the two separate for the rest of their lives?  Are you willing to rehome the puppy if it comes to that?  It probably won’t come to that, but you do need to keep the thought in the back of your mind.

Your dog and your cat may never be best friends, but you do want them to at least tolerate/ignore each other.  Our cat was a foster failure.  We already had an adopted large-breed dog when we brought her into the home as a foster.  Our dog, even though he’s about 70 pounds to her 10, is actually somewhat afraid of the cats, (like, he’s a little curious, mostly ignores them, but if they hiss, he immediately backs off!  lol!).  Despite this, she was afraid of him.  She’d been a stray, so she wasn’t comfortable with dogs, sudden movements, loud noises, etc.  

It’s been a slow process, but she’s accepted that he is part of the family, too.  I’d say it took a few good months before she was comfortable enough not to bolt if he got too close.   Now, she’ll still sit on my lap while he comes to the edge of the couch and puts his head right next to her for me to pet him.  She’ll even sniff him, and walk near him.  She still runs when he comes thundering up the stairs after beind outside, but other than that, (he has never tried to chase her, mind you), she is no longer afraid of him.  I doubt they will ever snuggle up with each other; I think I would faint if they did!  But if she hadn’t been able to get over her fear/hesitation around him, we would never have adopted her, because it would not have been fair to her to force her to live with an animal that made her so uncomfortable.

Hang in there, though, and give your cat some time to adjust before you panic.  Watch some episodes of “My Cat From Hell” with Jackson Galaxy so you can learn a little bit about cat behavior and how to make your home the kind of environment that will help her feel safe and secure.  Good luck! 

Post # 13
Member
11394 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: December 2010

My husband and I have three cats and two dogs. Before we got our dogs we had our three cats who were the kings of the palace so to say. When we got our first dog our three cats were cold shouldered, hardly ever came out of hiding, hissed anytime they saw the dog, the works. We got a doggy gate and placed it in the hallway. That let the cats feel safe, have their own space, and get to know the dog their own way through the gate.  This worked out great for us! After a few weeks everything went back to normal. We left the gate up so anytime the dog got on the cats nerves they could go to their own space and she couldn’t reach them. No gate now, two years and two dogs later. 🙂 When we moved we just decided to nick the gate and I’m glad we did. The cats are fine, the dogs are fine, and fur momma is happy! Good luck!

Post # 14
Member
242 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

@LittleRedOwl:  your welcome! I work in a vet office. I get asked questions like that all day long lol

Post # 15
Member
64 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: December 2014

@LittleRedOwl:  Awww..lol!  It will be fine.  Kitty will come around.  I give it 6 months or less.  The reason I say that is that I have acclimated dogs to dogs, cats to cats and dogs to cats and the longest it took was 6 months.  The older the animal the more set in their ways.  I had a 12 year old cat that took 6 months to adjust to a new kitten, but they became the best of friends.  I have 4 cats and the youngest two are 4 or 5 years old.  I just got a new dog in November who is between 2 and 4 and all of the cats are now adjusted and they just ignore him lol.    Since the puppy is  just a lil baby, the cat will probably learn to accept him more quickly and tolerate him. 

Post # 16
Member
2409 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: August 2015

I just watched a “My Cat From Hell” episode about this! I agree that you should get a tall cat tree or make a ledge somewhere so that cat can be out in the house (instead of hiding under a bed) but still feel safe. Cats generally like being up high where they can keep tabs on predators. Little kitty doors is also a great idea for having a dog-free room for your cat. And make sure puppy can’t get into the litter box 😉

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