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We're in the process of building a new house and would love to get a dog when we have to room. I have posted questions on dog forums about which dogs are the most tolerant of cats. Now I'm sending the question to the cat people. Do any of you have dogs in your household along with your cats? Have you added a dog to the family after the cats have been around for a while? (In our case 5 years). If you do have a dog, what kind of breed is it? Any suggestions about which dog breeds do the best with cats? Thanks in advance for you help. I'll check back soon! - Kate
 

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I have an American Eskimo. She tends to bully the cats around. She'll lay on them(she loves doing that..) and with kittens, she picks them up by their HEAD. Another 'Eskie' I've met just completely ignored cats. I'd say your best bet is with a dog that you KNOW grew up around kitties. The cats may not like the new arrival for a while though...
 

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Don't get any breeds that were bred to hunt, especially not whippets or lurchers, and avoid herding dogs too...

I am currently dog (a sheepdog) sitting for my parents while they're on holiday, and my cat is traumatised, it's only been 4 days and know it isn't going to work...I recommend that whatever you do, you try the dog out with your cats first to make sure you don't create a war in your home :)
 

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Sure it's not the case with all german shephards, but my family got one from a friend when I was younger and he killed all of my kittens! He was trying to play with them, picking them up in his mouth, etc. I found them lying all across the yard!

And my parents wouldn't blame the dog! :cry:
 

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I have a springer spaniel that loves cats, and gets along very well with them. I had a old terrier mix mutt that we rescued from the shelter that got along really really well with cats, in fact the cat often slept with him and followed him everywhere. I've also seen a number of greyhounds that have done really well with indoor cats-Kristi posted a picture of her greyhound, Willow, with her cat just a couple days ago. It depends more on the dog then the breed IMO. You'd be much better off getting an older dog from a rescue or from a family that has to rehome thier dog that has lived with cats before so you know for sure that you have a dog that won't bother the cats.
 

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Any puppy will get along with the cats just fine, in my opinion. I tend to believe that a cat and dog get along better than two cats.

If it's an adult dog, you might want to make sure that it's been around cats. Even the nicest of dogs could injure a cat.. whether or not the dog intends to.
 

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If your family is so happy, why would you want to get a darned ol' dog? (Okay, just kidding!) :lol:

Terriers and huskies can also be dangerous around cats. Terriers are bred to hunt small furry animals, and huskies are just plain unpredictable.

In my experience, some herding breeds (collies, shelties, Aussies, Old English) may actually be the safest. However, not the military ones like German Shepherd dogs, Belgians, Turvurens, or heelers/cattle dogs, because they are bred to nip and bite.

If you get a puppy, the cats will be able to train it up right, no matter what kind of dog it is. But it is best to avoid breeds with a strong prey drive or those that tend to be excitable.

Although if I got another dog (my Aussie was the best!), I think I'd get a German Shepherd dog.

Cheers,
Dr. Jean
 

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Greyhounds that have been trained to race are very dangerous around cats. They are naturally a very sweet and passive breed, but a dog that has been on the track has been trained to chase small, furry objects. If they've been used only for breeding or are too young to have been trained to race, then they're fine.

Cheers,
Dr. Jean
 

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I have a Terrier/Poodle mix and hes medium size and hes a VERY sweet dog, and hes great around my cat.. They do get into there play fights and theres rarely any biteing, just running around and chaseing each other..

If you do get a dog, find one that is very laid back and nice with other animals(pet shelters should do test with cats and other dogs to see who plays nice with each other)
 

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drjean said:
Greyhounds that have been trained to race are very dangerous around cats. They are naturally a very sweet and passive breed, but a dog that has been on the track has been trained to chase small, furry objects. If they've been used only for breeding or are too young to have been trained to race, then they're fine.

Cheers,
Dr. Jean
Actually, that is one of the biggest myths about greyhounds there is! I know alot of people that have retired greyhounds and cats living very peacefully in the same house together. Infact, alot of people that have adopted from the greyhound rescue I volunteer for DO have cats, and there's never been a problem with any of them, and ALL the greyhounds we adopt out come from the racetrack. Most greyhound adoption groups test the greyhounds before they're adopted out to see if they're cat safe. I even know one family that had greyhounds, ferrets, cats, guineapigs, and rabbits all leaving peacefully in the same house.
 

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I sponsored a rescued Greyhound (one of the blood donors at vet school), which meant that I could take him out for walks, and occasionally I took him home. He had to be leashed around the cats because he would go after them every time. He was a very sweet dog, but he had a high prey drive. He even went after a horse once, tried to hamstring it and did some damage. The horse kicked him pretty good and evidently knocked some sense into him, because he's now living happily on a ranch!

I guess I should have been more clear. Adult Greyhounds can easily be trained *not* to go after the cats, but a dog fresh off the track needs careful monitoring until you're sure they've gotten over their love of chasing small furry animals that run! :)

Cheers,
Dr. Jean
 

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Dr. Jean, it sounds like you really got a high-prey grey there! Good heavens!

I agree with Lydia; it's really about the individual grey. Our grey came into our house 3 days off the race track and never showed any interest in hurting our cats. They all get along wonderfully.

That said, Dr. Jean is correct that you must always be very very cautious with a greyhound. One thing that sets them apart is their incredible speed and strength. Therefore, you must be sure that the grey will get along with the cats. Almost all greyhound adoption groups do cat-testing, so only those greyhounds who are cat-safe or cat-workable go to cat homes. It's also important not to trust the grey too quickly; we kept Willow leashed to us the first two weeks, just to be sure she wouldn't suddenly want to chase a cat.

This is of course true with introducing any dog, especially a large dog that could really hurt a cat.
 

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I just recently got a Boston Terrier puppy...and Luxy hates her! But it's okay though, these things take time. I think as long as you get it as a puppy they will be okay together. I would however stay away from Jack Russles and Grey Hounds.
 

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Arg! :lol: One more time: Yes, some greyhounds are high-prey and can't be trusted around cats. However, many, many, many ex-racing greyhounds do just fine. Like my own:
 

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GO for it!

But like the others have said, if you're going to get an adult dog get it from somewhere that fosters the dogs out so you know what kind of temperment it has.

I have a bichon/shih-tzu mix and he is fabulous with our kitty Zoe. They wrestle, play tag, drink from the same water bowl, and sleep together. The most important thing is to give the cat access to it's own space while the dog is learning the ropes. A baby gate in front of a room with kitty's litter box and food (far away from eachother) is perfect. And I would keep the dog, whether pup or grown, on a leash for the first few days. Teach the dog 'off' so that whenever they get too close for kitty's comfort you can get the dog to back off.

If after a month or two the kitty is still staying away from the dog, find an irresistable treat (it can be an interactive toy, yogurt, or liver) and give it whenever they're in the same room. You might need a second person to hold the dog still. Use the treat whenever they're near eachother. Eventually the cat will come closer and closer to the dog to get their treat.

I think, given a month or so, they'll start hanging out and enjoying eachother's company. Here are my two laying next to eachother.



Kristi I LOVE that picture!
 

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Prey Drive is something very important to consider, but obviously exceptions to every rule. Training is also very important.

If you're going for a puppy, I would say that you should avoid terriers firstly. I'm sure there are plenty of terriers that can and do live peacefully with cats (I've seen cats and Pit Bulls cuddled up just like that greyhound :)), but in general, terriers are extremely high in prey drive because they were all bred to hunt something.

I'd be iffy about herding breeds because they too are bred for their high prey drive, although it's utilized in a different fashion from the hunting terriers.

If you do get a puppy, make sure you go through a good reputable breeder who does all the proper testing on their dogs to make sure they're physically and mentally healthy before they breed them. Well bred dogs (of any breed) are more likely to be stable than a brother and sister penned in the back yard for the purpose of producing puppies.

My dog is a mutt with chow-chow, german shepherd, and collie in her (and probably more)... None of which I would recommend for keeping with kitties, but my dog does great with the five cats. It doesn't mean she likes them, but they sure do love her. They rub on her, lick her feet, lick her ears (all of which they happily do while she growls at them), and she tolerates all of it. Very rarely, she'll even play with them for a short period of time. This is a dog who used to roam free and kill squirrels and rabbits. High prey drive indeed, but she knows what belongs to us and what doesn't (though she's still not allowed to chase wild animals).

If you're willing to consider gettng and adult dog, My personal suggestion is that you go on to http://www.petfinder.org and select DOG, type in your zip code, and go through the results. Many of the rescues and shelters there work through a "foster" system where they have the animals in homes, so they're able to tell you if the animals are good with other cats or dogs, and kids, and any other issues they may have. You may even be able to arrange for the dog to visit your home! Adults dogs are good because you're already aware of their personality, so you don't have to worry about what they're going to be like "when they grow up." Also, there's no potty training involved ;)
 

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I found my first cat through the petfinder site and I have to say foster shelters are the way to go to get a good match for your household. I now have two from the same group and they helped me pick the pets that would fit me and my lifestyle.
 
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