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Any breeds that do well with very big dogs?

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 
I just wanted to know whether there were any specific breeds that do. The very big dog in question is a Neapolitan Mastiff but we'll be getting her as a puppy and the cat as a kitten so they can grow up together. However, someone mentioned to me that I should perhaps go for a large breed of cat, so does size really matter?..
We were thinking maybe a Ragdoll, could it be too defenceless?
maybe a Siamese, too small/ delicate?
maybe a Norwegian Forest cat or Maine Coon, I know they're big but what about tempermants? Are they suitable?

Any advice would be much appreciated,
post #2 of 16
I think if anything what is more important is energy levels. You might try to match the energy level of the dog and cat (mastiffs are lower energy, sort of in spurts right?). So a larger cat, with long hair (like the maine coon, siberian, etc) might be a good choice. A cat that is zipping around might be bothersome to the dog? I don't have a lot of personal experience wtih this though. I don't think it will matter size wise. Any cat raised from kittenhood with the dog should grow up in harmony. The dog is the bigger risk as you need to know how bad the prey drive is. I may never *fully* trust a shepard around a cat even if they grew up together (someday I intend on doing this combination but I don't think I would leave these 2 alone together). But dogs with a lesser prey drive would be well suited for feline companionship.

Good luck!
post #3 of 16

Our Ragdolls get along really well with our dogs, and my Mom also brings her Rott's over for a visit, and the Raggies also get along great with them. Ragdolls in general get along great with other animals. We have 2 Old English Sheepdogs, that feel like they are surrogate mothers to all the cats/kittens. I think it will depend on your dogs temperament. I would look closely at your puppies parents temperament as well, that can give you an idea of how your puppy will act. Any dog will need obedience training, but primarily bigger dogs, as you want to be able to control them, when they start to outweigh you.
Here is a few past pictures of our Ragdolls snuggling with the sheepdogs.
Good luck on your search for a kitten!!

post #4 of 16
OMG that is so cute!
post #5 of 16
Thread Starter 
That's great advice, thank you both very much!
post #6 of 16
i grew up with a 40lb heinz 57 and a 125 lb german shepard both did well with the elderly siamese( he was 15 when the german was a pup) , every dog I have owned has lived with Kandie ( she is a mixed breed large kitty) ... so I too would check the kitty activity leval .... my aunts mastiff lived for years with a siamese look alike ...

Mastiffs are gaurd dog s aka they will likely protect kitty no matter what breed kitty is
post #7 of 16
I would go with cats that can "handle themselves". Maine Coons are one breed. Persians or Ragdolls would be too docile (IMO). A Bengal would hold their own too.

Or just go to a local shelter and pick out a nice size neutered male - about 13/14 lbs. Personally I'd also not get a kitten but a 1/2 grown or full grown cat.

The dog is a "big" puppy to begin with and if the cats have been raised around dogs, they would have more of an advantage against the puppy. That size puppy and a kitten of any breed may not be a good combo.
post #8 of 16
Yah that is a good idea. Even if you want a purebreed, getting the kitten first and letting them become comfortable with their new surroundings would be good. Dogs (especially one so big even as a pup) will easily dominate a kitten that isn't to sure of himself. Let the cat gain confidance, grow a little and such then introduce the pup. I'd also make sure the cat is comfortable to get off teh ground and away from the pup if need be (a nice cat tree will do the trick).

My friend just got a ferret. The ferret is young and playful and the cats do not yet know what to make of her. Eveidently as soon as the ferret is out they are off the floor where the ferret can't reach them. Cats really like to observe for a while without confrontation.
post #9 of 16
We haven't raised puppies and kittens together, but I have a medium size dog and the best cat for him to get along with was a 13 pound male that was very active and playful that we got from the pound. I think the activity level and playfulness was key.

I have heard of certain breeds "fetching" and acting more dog-like - ones that come to mind are Norwegian Forest Cats, Maine Coon, and Havana Brown. The first 2 are large-breed cats...let us know what you do!
post #10 of 16
We got our puppy first, trained him for 2 months then added a kitten. It really helped having him sit/stay while indroducing the kitten.
post #11 of 16
My smallest dog was 45 pounds and my largest about 95 pounds. All of my cats have gotten along with them, but will admit that I have never had a specific breed of cat (most of my cats were born feral). It depends more on how the dog was raised and its temperament than the cat.
post #12 of 16
I think everyone has given great advice. I also wanted to stress, it may be difficult to raise the puppy and kitten at the "same" time. I am a stay at home Mom, that had a little bit of advantage to potty training, obedience training, and teaching a puppy that chasing kittens or mouthing kittens/cat is a big No No.
I had adult cats when we added Jack and Annabelle, our 2 Sheepdogs. They were almost a year old, before introduced to kittens. Training your puppy is going to be the most important, there is a wonderful book called "The Dog Whisperer", that helps with doing some of the training and commands at home.
The pictures you saw up above are not a clear picture of our animals, and for that I apologize. That was more or less just a "cute" picture, our kittens were not old enough to be left alone for any amount of time with the dogs, no matter how much they are trusted. However, our cats and older kittens can often be found snuggled up together, but there was obvious hard work in training the dogs to know certain commands.
We also have cat doors placed in certain rooms, so if they do get fed up with dog baths, they can go and have some peace and quiet, and the dogs can't follow them.
IMO, it might be best to either get the puppy first, to train him/her, and then get a kitten, or get a kitten and allow it to get older before bringing home a puppy.
I am not sure about the other breeds mentioned, but IMO Ragdolls are very trusting around other animals, a kitten may not see danger in a puppy until it was too late. The puppy is going to be a large puppy, and unaware of his size and strength, it certainly won't mean to hurt anything, but it is always better to be safe.
I do wish you the best raising your fur family. I just should have stated the negative side as well as the positive, when raising kittens and puppies together.
There is a forum that I would recommend, it is for Old English Sheepdogs, but the members there have added many years of advice and training with their dogs, and of course you don't have to own a sheepdog to become a member. The site is, and then go to the communtiy forum. If you need any help, I am moderator of the forums, and would be happy to help, just PM me.
Sorry for such a long post, I can ramble on sometimes.
post #13 of 16
Thread Starter 
Thank you everyone for all the excellent advice!

We have actually found a wonderful Maine Coon breeder and we hope to adopt one of her kittens with the next litter. But we'll see there's time yet.

The activity level in both and also the age is definitely something we'll be looking out for. If I'm not mistaken the kitty will be with us first and the puppy later. That's due to when they're due...

We actually already have a Pug (a whole other story) so I'm hoping we can settle the kitty down, then introduce him to the Pug, then have the Mastiff in and later gradually introduce everyone to each other. By the time the Neo comes I hope to make the kitty feel at ease and at home and as comfortable as possible with our Pug.

Thank you all once more and be sure to post or pm me if you think of anything more.

post #14 of 16
My friend had two Mastiffs (one recently died) and 6 cats, and he also fosters for the humane society. Mastiffs are pretty easygoing and usually not overly bright, so they shouldn't pose a threat to the cats.

I would, however, recommend a pair of kittens. Any breed will do and your local shelter really ought to be your first stop.
post #15 of 16
My DSH Shelter rescues all did fine with my boyfriend's German shepherd dog, and all of them have very different temperments
post #16 of 16
Thread Starter 
I guess at the end of the day it all depends on the personality of the particular dog and particular cat. Not so much about the breed.

I hope it's all good for our guys

Thank you for all your comments!
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