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A dog with 3 cats

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
Hi, I have 3 cats aged between 3 + 6 years. The thing is my 10 year old son really wants a dog, he has been asking for months now. My cats really aren't used to dogs and I don't know how they would react, which is why I'm really thinking hard about this. I don't want to get a dog to find that it isn't working out so have to get rid of it again,that wouldn't be fair on the dog or my son. Any ideas of small breeds of dog that would get on well with cats and children?
post #2 of 13
I have Jello, a shih'tzu. He was adopted when he was 7 years old. He never knew cats. But I had no problem with him. I know two of my cats do not like dogs but they accepted Jello the moment he came.
I remember someone saying shih'tzus are good choices for homes with cats.
post #3 of 13
Thread Starter 
Funny you should mention shih tzus, iv'e always said if I got a dog I would like one of them , I just didn't know if they were any good with cats. Do you think a puppy would be better or a more mature dog?
post #4 of 13
Originally Posted by cobbybear View Post
Do you think a puppy would be better or a more mature dog?
I am not an expert and Jello is the only dog that has lived with my cats. But it's a good idea to know how your cats will react. Will they tolerate a playful puppy? Will an adult dog be more acceptable to them?
I am sure more experienced TCS members will give you better advise but I hope I helped.
post #5 of 13
I think you would be better off with a puppy. they will be closer to the size of the cat.

I cant say much for having a "small" dog with cats. I had my cats first, and then got my dog. I have a Rottweiler, hes now 4 years old. He LOVES the cats, and they play together!!

I trust the dog completely! He gives up his bed for the cats, and lets them drink out of his water bowl too!. They share the house when im at work or out doing things. i even find them sleeping together.

It was easier to get him as a puppy and do this, cause with puppy classes he was easy to train, and they cats let him know who's boss,lol. Just goes to show, its training, not dog breed that will tell you how they will act .Good Luck with the choice!
post #6 of 13
its a hard one as my german sheaperd was an adult when i got some of my cats they were wary at first but got used to him over time now they love him , i then got my jack russel cross as a puppy she was smaller than the cats and im sure the cats thought she was another cat they took to her straight away . my older cats lived with my bull mastiff so i dont think its the size of the dog . when i introduce new dogs or cats i sometimes put them in seperate rooms so they can sniff under the door it seems to get them used to each other
post #7 of 13
I've always had the best luck adopting older (young) dogs from shelters that temperment test for a variety of situations.
Bear was 9 months old when I got him, he'd been tested with cats, dogs, and children of all ages as well as tested for food/toy aggression issues.

He does great with everything.
He doesn't really interact with the cats, he mostly ignores them, which was great when introducing him to my older, established cats.

You might try fostering a few dogs until you find one that meshes well with your family.
post #8 of 13
I personally would go for an adult that has been around cats. You can't guarantee a puppy will be good with cats (or kids) & they often annoying the living daylights out of the cats.

You can find a lot of adults in shelters that the can assure you are good with kids and cats.
post #9 of 13
I agree on looking for a young adult dog that is TRAINED well. While puppies are cute, they need training and with the cats not used to dogs, it might not be the wisest thing to introduce.

Keno loves cats (she's a lab) and raised two litters of barn kittens, so she is calm enough for them. If she was a hyper puppy, I'd not introduce her to cats that didn't know about dogs.

Most of the terrier breeds would probably be more aggresive to the cats then you want. Exception would be a Boston Terrier. Do some long and hard research for the right breed to join the family.
post #10 of 13
You will find pluses and minuses with both puppies and adult dogs.

If a puppy was just taken away from his littermates, they will view the kittens as just another puppy and try to play with them as such. We tried this when we adopted Sam and within a month, we went back and adopted his brother so that he would leave the cats alone.

With an adult, unless you know its background, you won't know if it is cat friendly. Some dogs, regardless of their size, have a high prey drive and unless you know how to control them, it can be a disaster. If this is your first experience with dogs, be wary of an adult.

I just adopted a 9 month old puppy (mid sized dog). She's young enough to redirect any aggression, and old enough that she doesn't feel obliged to play hard with the cats. I was also able to housebreak her in about 2 weeks.
post #11 of 13
We adopted Jasper as a puppy, and our three cats were here before he arrived. He is a 2 year old Labrador and gets on well with them all.

It did take a few weeks for them to get used to each other, but they got along in the end. I think the cats knew that Jasper was going to be sticking around, and decided to not put up a fight about it.

It's now at the stage where they will share food from each other's bowls, sleep next to each other and sometimes play together!

Bringing a puppy into the house made things easier too, we trained Jasper to respect the cats and their things (such as beds) and over time he knew what to touch and what not to. The odd occasion he will do something to antagonize the cats, but he soon learns his lesson when they give him a quick swipe of the paw!
post #12 of 13
Thread Starter 
Thanks for all your advice. After much thought and searching the web for info, I have decided upon a King Charles Cavalier spaniel. I have also decided to get a puppy because that way it will be brought up around cats and i'm sure it will soon learn not to bother the cats too much. Who knows, my cats may even grow to love it.
post #13 of 13
I would recommend you look for a dog who has lived with cats and ignores them. I would not recommend a puppy if your cats have not been around dogs before, puppies can be VERY overwhelming!
I currently have 3 cats and 2 dogs and they all get along ok, except for one cat who dislikes both cats and dogs and she just growls and swipes at everyone. All the other animals have learned to steer clear of her.
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