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Puppy & Kitten: Are They a Good Match?

Puppies and kittens may look cute in photographs together, but you'll want to ensure they get along at home. Today, our Douglasville vets share tips on ensuring your puppy and kitten behave well together.

Raising a Puppy & Kitten Together

If you intend to raise a puppy and kitten together, there are several strategies for introducing your two pets to one another and getting them to coexist.

Introduce Them Slowly

It's important to introduce your puppy and kitten to each other early on to ensure a smooth transition into companionship. How you go about introducing them is also crucial. 

During their first meeting, ensure they have a visual connection and provide each of them with their designated space. Setting up connected rooms with a baby gate between them can be a great way to start. 

It's normal for there to be some excitement during their initial encounters. Your kitten might hiss and spit at your dog as it tries to establish boundaries with a new companion. 

The goal during these first encounters is to elicit positive reactions or, at the very least, indifference if your puppy and kitten are able to happily go about their own activities while in each other's sight, it's a promising sign that they can coexist safely and comfortably.

Training Your Puppy

Focusing on your puppy's obedience is paramount, particularly when raising them alongside a kitten!

Ensure your dog masters essential commands such as "sit," "stay," "no," and "leave it," especially if your puppy is becoming overly physical with your kitten. When your puppy exhibits excessive excitement or starts to stalk or chase the kitten, these commands become crucial in swiftly redirecting your puppy's behavior and instilling clear boundaries regarding interactions with your cat.

Best Dog Breeds to Raise with a Cat

To ensure a successful partnership between your puppy and kitten, it's important to proactively choose the right dog breed before bringing your adorable puppy into your home. The breed and temperament of your puppy are key factors that will determine the success of raising them together, especially in comparison to your kitten.

Dogs have a natural hunting instinct, which can manifest in their playtime activities, such as chasing a ball (which resembles small animals) or tugging on a rope (which mimics a catch). The intensity of this hunting instinct, also known as "prey drive," varies among dog breeds. Behavioral issues may arise from the intensity of your dog's prey drive.

As your dog grows larger than your cat, even if they initially seem to get along, breeds with a heightened hunting instinct may have their instincts take over, causing them to view your cat as prey. Breeds such as Terriers, Beagles, Shiba Inus, Huskies, Dobermans, Malamutes, and Cattle Dogs are examples of breeds with notably high prey drives. If your puppy belongs to or is a mix of these breeds, exercising caution regarding their prey drive is crucial when raising them alongside your kitten.

Can Puppy and Kitten sleep together?

Managing Your Pet's Time Together

It is important to watch your kittens and puppies when they are together. As you observe them, you can determine how their relationship is progressing. However, depending on the personalities of your pets, you may need to take some of the following steps:

  • Avoid leaving your dog and cat unsupervised together. Keep them separated in different rooms or use crates.
  • It's best to avoid having your puppy and kitten eat together at the same time or in the same place. Dogs can be very protective of their food and may become confrontational with your kitten, even if the kitten sniffs the food their sibling is eating.
  • It is recommended to create safe spaces in your home where each pet can stay alone if they want to. This can be achieved by teaching your pets to respect each other's boundaries, providing a crate for your puppy, or designating a separate area in the house for each pet. This will help ensure all pets feel comfortable and safe in their own space.

Note: The advice provided in this post is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute medical advice regarding pets. For an accurate diagnosis of your pet's condition, please make an appointment with your vet.

Are you looking to add a puppy and kitten to the family? Contact our Douglasville vets to have your companions cared for.

New Patients Welcome

Douglasville Veterinary Hospital is accepting new patients! Our experienced vets are passionate about the health of Douglasville companion animals. Get in touch today to book your pet's first appointment.

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