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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Ok I obtained a kitten back in October thanks to my curious daughters wondering in our wood pile in the back yard, he was abandoned by his mom, we took him in and have had him eversince, a few weeks later I adopted a cat from Animal Control, she was due to be PTS the next day, she is a very laid back timid cat just over a yr old, where as the kitten is your typical crazy cat.,. Well here comes my question and a comment I was told by a trainer I used once.

Ok My female has a very high prey drive, she has never liked cats even when we had one before her, she would pin her down and the cat had no claws to defend herself, I though had the situation under control and the cat was never harmed... My male is curious to the cats when he sees them but he doesnt try to lunge (well neither dog does) The cats have a 5ft tall 4 feet wide kitty condo with 3 perches and a cat bed inside it, at night they have free roam of the house (but the older one stays in the bedroom) and also since most cats sleep all day they stay in my daughters room, people know if the lock on the top of the door is locked the cats are out as well as the dogs.. I dont want my house tore apart with the chasing... Now I will be trying to slowly introduce them without cages in between (with muzzles)... But do does anyone think Im cruel for having my cats live that way? they are happy cats... I was told by a trainer I used once that I should NEVER get another dog until the 2 I have now like the cats, well that may never happen, but when I get my puppy he will be introduced to them ASAP... Please tell me what you think


Sorry so long.
 

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Ok, so if I understand right, your cats primarily live in your daughter's room? I don't feel this is cruel - there are countless people that have a specific room they regulate their cats too. Often cats will do this anyway, without an owner's help. My late cat Oreo was very much into having her 'area' and often stayed in a select few areas of the house. The fact that you give them time to roam around at night, randomly throughout the day also helps. Provided the room is of decent size, they have access to toys, water, etc. then I really don't see a problem with it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thank you, the trainer I used once after my original trainer moved told me it was not fair to get another dog because the 2 I have do not like the cats, now the dogs were here first and Gypsy never was a cat dog, and Cash was never introduced to them he was ok but eh- still his prey drive kicks in... the new pup will be introduced from the get go. Grace the adopted shelter cat is very scared, she likes all of us but she prefers to be left alone at least 90% of the time, Woody has toys of all sorts, his favorite is his Triangle bed, and then my daughter bought him this fishing kat nip pole... At times I move the kitty Condo infront of the window so they can watch the birds like they do in the mornings when the dogs are downstairs... Here are some pics, Woody is the kitten we saved at 3 weeks he is in the triangle.
 

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It is incumbent upon you to keep the cats safe from the dog. It is also incumbent on you to train your dogs to do things like Lie down and Stay when you ask them to, even if a cat walks withing 2 feet of them.

Keeping the cats as you are is keeping them safe. I would also crate train the dogs so that they can be crated some of the time to allow the cats more freedom.

IMO dogs should be crated or kenneled when you are not home or are not there to supervise them. I know a lot of people let the dog(s) loose in the house when they are not there, but there are a LOT of things dogs can get into (like electric wires) when they are loose and unsupervised in a house.

As to the dog with the Prey drive.. this dog CAN be trained to leave the cats alone when you are present (and the dogs and cats should always be separated when you are not present.. prevention of disaster is 9/10ths of the cure). Keep the dog on a leash and when he goes for the cat, step between him and the cat, lean over him (most dogs find this somewhat threatening) and move into his space doing a little cha cha like move. When you do it, say, MY cats! Saying this is not for the benefit of the dog, but so you remember why you are doing it.

Others here have used a can with some pennies in it.. when the dog goes for the cat, they shake the can with pennies which gets the dog's attention and redirects them from the cat. This works, but I don't like it as I would prefer to ask for an alternate behavior to cat chasing (like lie down and stay). With some dogs, the can shaking can get them sound reactive in a not good way.

I have had cats for years and German Shepherds as well as other dogs with the cats. My last dog was high prey drive but I trained her. She loved her cats. This dog loves her cats too and plays with them.. sometimes they start it too.

I am serious about trainng my dogs and I am VERY serious about training them to behave in the presence of the cats.. so that may be the underlying source of my success in this. I have had several dogs over my life and never had a dog chasing cats problem. Ever.
 

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The cats have a 5ft tall 4 feet wide kitty condo with 3 perches and a cat bed inside it, at night they have free roam of the house (but the older one stays in the bedroom) and also since most cats sleep all day they stay in my daughters room, people know if the lock on the top of the door is locked the cats are out as well as the dogs.. I dont want my house tore apart with the chasing... Now I will be trying to slowly introduce them without cages in between (with muzzles)... But do does anyone think Im cruel for having my cats live that way?
I don't think this is cruel. I used to live in a center city efficiency (that's a one-room apartment) with two cats and a dog and it was fine -- I just made lots of smaller, private areas for the cats to "get away from it all." Cats are territorial, though not in the way dogs are, so if they are confined in too small a space with each other they can get kind of irritable.

I agree with Elana55 that you have to be very careful and take extra measures to make sure your cats are safe. Even if your previous cat wasn't harmed, you should never, ever forget that your dogs can and might kill your cats. Never leave them alone together, ever. Always crate the dogs if they are going to be alone together. And when you are present and you are letting them interact, always keep the muzzles on until you've trained them to the point that you are sure they will listen to you and leave the cats alone. You may never reach this point. Not everyone is as good a trainer as Elana55 appears to be. It's hard work, and getting a third dog will make it harder.

One thing concerns me: you wrote, "My female has a very high prey drive, she has never liked cats even when we had one before her, she would pin her down and the cat had no claws to defend herself, I though had the situation under control and the cat was never harmed..."
This concerns me because if your dog was chasing and pinning the cat down, you were not in control, although you seem to think you were. In my opinion, you should never let it get to this point.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 · (Edited)
Oh my dogs are always crated, one day I left the dogs out in the basement while I slept (door closed to the upstairs) and when I woke up to check on them they both were asleep in their crate, I have always crated the dogs when I am gone or too busy to watch their every move.. So many of my family members think I am soooo mean for that.. I would NEVER put any of my animals in harms way, so that is why I will be training training training when it comes to the cats...


One thing concerns me: you wrote, "My female has a very high prey drive, she has never liked cats even when we had one before her, she would pin her down and the cat had no claws to defend herself, I though had the situation under control and the cat was never harmed..."
This concerns me because if your dog was chasing and pinning the cat down, you were not in control, although you seem to think you were. In my opinion, you should never let it get to this point.[/QUOTE]





She(the dog ) was a puppy and that started as play, but ended as not play, it did end and corrections were given, but after my son passed away and I moved for a few months I had to rehome all my animals but my rottweiler, so it was several years before we had another cat. I wont let anything happen to the kitties...I do wish I could get Grace to come out of her shell more often with us :( makes me sad. but I watch her and she seems happy.
 

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Never had a problem with my previous dogs and cats over the years. So, when I adopted a 3 yr old Shepherd mix last week ("Cleo"), I was startled when she leapt at the cats barking, barking at them. Scared the heck out of them, and they hid under the bed. Cleo immediately responded to me when I loudly and firmly said "NO" and "OUT", whereupon she left the room. A week later, the cats are now curious about Cleo. They get to see each other through the glass patio door. I am able to keep them all safe ... Cleo is extremely well-trained ... I guess my questions is: will Cleo ever get used to them?
 

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Yes. But I would never trust Cleo to just be with them w/o supervision.

Try to let Cleo know that the cats are YOURS by stepping into her space and facing her and cha cha-ing into her space to let her know the cats are yours. You can do this with a barrier between Cleo and the cats.

Keep in mind that IF the cats run, the dog is likely to chase. This can begin as a game and turn into prey drive and a dead cat or cats.

I spend a LOT of time with my dog on impulse control and Lie Down under very exciting chase games. I started with a toy on a rope and got her chasing and then told her LIE DOWN. We moved on to a few sheepherding lessons. I now use it with all kinds of things like those enticing bunny rabbits on the neighbor's lawn and the red squirrel that ran a foot under her nose the other day (I thought the squirrel was going to climb her leg.. LOL).

When the cats and dog are in the same room, have the dog on a leash and in a lie down. The object is to improve her impulse control to the point where 'Lie Down' is more important than 'lets see if the cats will run so I can chase them!'
 
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