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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I have a 3 year old Burmese male (neutered) and a buddy of mine is looking at moving into my apartment with me which is a moderate sized apartment. He has a 50-60lb 1.5 year old Husky male (not neutered) that I'm feeling may be an issue.

The rundown on my cat:
3 y/o male
Neutered
Moved in when my St. Bernard was 1 y/o and lived together for over 2 years (St. Bernard currently living with parents)
He plays with the St. Bernard and generally doesn't seem to mind her, the cat will run up to her and smack her with a paw, then run away; or walk up and head butt the dog. Still has no issue when we visit back home

The rundown on the Husky:
1.5 y/o male
Not Neutered (I can't talk him into it)
He gets played with a couple of hours a day outside and gets walked at least once or twice a day
Grew up around an older cat (now 15 y/o) and generally doesn't bother the cat unless the cat starts trying to play
Kennel trained and will be kept in a kennel when nobody is home
Doesn't jump, bite, and is half decently trained when it comes to being calm indoors.

Previous experience introducing new dog:
A 9 week old male Welsh Corgi was introduced into my home at one point for about 8 days. My cat would hiss, hide, and fur would stand on end the first couple days. The Corgi mostly ignored the cat, let the cat walk up to him and didn't pay any attention and after the 8 days my cat didn't seem to have an issue (actually started head butting/rubbing against the Corgi). However the Corgi was a very calm puppy, the Husky loves to run around and play and needs to every day or that energy will transfer to inside the home.


Are there any tips anybody can give me? Any advice? I'm hoping this isn't just a flat out bad idea because my cat is very relaxed most of the time. When you come home he runs up to you, lays on his back and stretches until you rub his belly. He goes to sleep on me while sitting on his back and is very comfortable with his surroundings. I know that will be gone for awhile but I don't want it to be gone forever. I just want to make sure my cat is ok with this whole thing and make the transfer as easy as possible.

Thanks!
 

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I have been looking into this issue too thanks to having to work out possible future roommate issues. The good news is that the dog in your equation has lived with a cat before with no issues, and is a husky which although are not the BEST dogs to have with cats, are not the WORST. On Dogbreedinfo.com they rank a 3 out of 5, with 5 being 'do not trust with cats at all'.

This one since it has been socialized with cats will be a little easier, but I would still install a lot of back-up plans and do a slow introduction.

One, keep your cats in a safe-room for a bit. Do the towel trick (rubbing it all over the dog, then the cats, then back to the dog, etc.) to mix scents, and alternate rooms for the animals so they get used to smelling the other everywhere, etc.

I would definitely set up some baby gates that would allow your cat to slip into a safe room and keep the dog out.

Also, I would NOT leave them unattended together until awhile has passed and you feel you can correctly guess how they will be together (and there have been no signs of problems for awhile).

This is all just what I have read when researching introductions between hounds and cats, so it should work fairly well. But someone else here probably has more hands on info, so I will defer to them.
 

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Huskies have a very, very high prey drive. They have been known to live with cats well, but you're going to need to be extremely diligent about protecting your cat until you are 100% sure of the relationship...and even then, still be cautious.

Are you planning for this to be a long term situation? If not, I'm not sure I'd want to go through (and put my cat through) the process....
 

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When i had to move in with my mom to help when she was going into cancer treatments. i had 6 cats at the time and she had a husky. Never had an issue with them and that dog had never lived with cats. Depends on how they are introduced really I guess.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Rebbie - I'll take your advice to heart here. Seems like a lot of good ideas, thanks!

Doodlebug - I plan for this to last probably about 3 years, otherwise I'd drop my cat off with my parents for a little while. It's always a possibility anyway but I'd rather avoid that seeing as when I'm at their place and I leave, he sits around and waits by the door for me to come back. But like I said, the dog will be in a kennel when nobody else is home and I've been thinking about setting up a 'cat-walk' around the apartment about 7 feet up so he can get around a few places without having to be on the ground.

Botany - How old was the Husky and was it male or female? Good to hear you had good luck with the relationship.
 

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The cat issue aside, I would not agree to live with an intact male dog. Even if the dog doesn't have behavioral issues now, there's no guarantee he won't develope them in the next three years!
 

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I would be very leery of having an intact Husky whose hormones may contribute to aggressiveness as he matures even more. Even a neutered Husky would be an iffy situation if I were in your shoes, as they do have a high prey drive. If you go ahead with it, probably be a good idea to have a leash on the Husky indoors when he's out of the crate. This dog is going to need a lot hard-running exercise every day, not just a walk around the block. Train him to run beside a bike on a leash and take some looong rides. As it's said, "a good dog, is a tired dog".
 

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Botany - How old was the Husky and was it male or female? Good to hear you had good luck with the relationship.
neutered male about 2 years old. my youngest cat at the time was 6 years. This was their actual first time with a dog full time, and they all just ignored him after the initial sniff fest. they (my cats) had already been used to foster kitties coming and going though.

You do have to understand though that my grandparents bred/ raised/ showed huskies when I was a kid. So even though we do not know where this one came from (he was found on the side of a busy highway), he was well trained and polite.
 

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I would be very leery of having an intact Husky whose hormones may contribute to aggressiveness as he matures even more. Even a neutered Husky would be an iffy situation if I were in your shoes, as they do have a high prey drive. If you go ahead with it, probably be a good idea to have a leash on the Husky indoors when he's out of the crate. This dog is going to need a lot hard-running exercise every day, not just a walk around the block. Train him to run beside a bike on a leash and take some looong rides. As it's said, "a good dog, is a tired dog".
or if you skate.. get it a good harness. all our huskies LOVED to pull and would run forever if you let them.
 
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