Posted 6th Apr 2018
The thought of getting cats and dogs living together can be enough to put you off wanting to bring the two together
However, Cats Protection have compiled a list of handy tips to make to help you make the process that bit easier.
She said: "Cats and dogs both make wonderful pets, and it’s no wonder why so many people find it difficult to choose which one they’d like to own. The truth is that many people can enjoy all the fun of owning both, as cats and dogs often make great companions."
"We have plenty of cats available for rehoming who have lived with dogs in the past and would be happy to live with a canine friend again. It’s important to take a slow and careful approach when helping any new pets get to know each other, but by following a few steps there’s every chance of ensuring a successful introduction."
1 Keep your dog calm and on the lead. It could help to take your dog on a vigorous walk before starting to introduce them to a cat.
2 Train your dog to show off relaxed and non-threatening behaviour around the cat, including 'down' and 'stay', and to ensure you stay in control throughout.
3 Make sure your cat doesn't feel cornered. They should feel relaxed and have a safe escape route, ideally with a high ledge where the dog can't reach them. Ensure external doors and windows are kept closed to avoid the cat bolting.
4 Never restrain your cat or force them to approach the dog. If your cat wants to leave the room, don't keep them in there.
5 Don't let your dog chase after the cat if it runs away - instead, praise and treat the dog if they remain calm.
6 Repeat short introductions until the dogs show little or no interest and the cat is not fearful of the dog. Next, let the dog go on a long lead, which can be picked up if necessary.
7 Give your cat treats so they associate the dog with something more positive.
Cats Protection will be at this year's DogFest (23-24 June), where the charity will highlight exactly how dogs and cats can live together.
Recipe courtesy of Cats Protection