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Am I making the right decision?

post #1 of 17
Thread Starter 
Hello All,

I have been hoping to get a cat for months now, trying to figure out what type of cat etc. I have a 1 year old Pug and will be getting a Neapolitan Mastiff in September.

I have always had cats, all my life and my Pug, Fu, is an entirely new experience for me. He has not been to training school but will start at the end of the month. I wanted to get him trained at 6 months but was told by a trainer that since he was a Pug he needn't have formal training. This has left me with a wildchild and he has become a huge handful. He's just hyperactive and wants to play all the time. He's also very stubborn. I've been doing a lot of reading on dog training and dominance and they have really helped but he's still really difficult.

When he sees cats he just wants to play and chase. The cats, naturally, don't.

We decided that in our situation a Maine Coon was the answer since they are large and powerful (for the Neapolitan Mastiff) yet they are gentle and tolerante. For months now, I've been a woman possesed trying to find the right cat. Today, however, it hit me that Mr. Fu, a Neo and a cat might be too much to handle...

I really wanted a Maine Coon and now I don't think I can have one...

What do you all think? Can I handle all these guys? Can I make them live in peace together? What does one need to really do to make them live in peace together??

I could wait and see how Fu changes after the formal training and wait till the Mastiff has settles in but then I'm afraid that they'll be too old to adapt to each other.

I'm soooo upset please help me. Any words of advice will be so appreciated...

Sorry for the long post,
post #2 of 17
Any trainer that tells you a dog doesn't need formal training because of breed, is not a trainer I want to be giving money to.


As far as your descision goes, you have to do what feels right in your heart.
I know that doesn't help much, but usually our instincts are right on.
post #3 of 17
Yup, what Arlyn said about that trainer, sheesh! ANY dog, regardless of size, needs at least some basic obedience training.

Get your dog in some obedience classes, see how he does, and then think about the cat again.
post #4 of 17
Thread Starter 
You guys are so right about the trainer... I was stupid, now I know better.
At least Fu's going to get some training now. Also I'm doing much better with dominance control. Patricia McConnell's books helped me so much! He is a little better..
post #5 of 17
Personally, I think that you should slowly add one pet at a time and not get ahead of yourself. First, the pug needs training (and I agree that that trainer was an idiot to tell you that) and then the Mastiff will need training...Once this is accomplished, then think about the cat...Otherwise, its a recipe for disaster.
post #6 of 17
Yes, Training is good and I wouldn't worry about the age. I also was going to mention how big your house is and if they can have space from eachother. I have 5 dogs and 4 cats in a 1500sqft home but lots of land. I actually put a gate across my master bedroom entrance so the cats can jump in and get away from the dogs and have no stress. They still like the dogs and they even snuggle togehter sometimes but my cats get annoyed by them. Our bedroom is like the cat room with their food and the litter boxes in the bathroom. My set-up works great and my dogs have a dog door to go in and out and they love all the room.
post #7 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by thespring
You guys are so right about the trainer... I was stupid, now I know better.
At least Fu's going to get some training now. Also I'm doing much better with dominance control. Patricia McConnell's books helped me so much! He is a little better..

no no, the one who was stupid was the so called trainer who said that your dog didn't need training because he is SMALL.

How old is the Mastiff you plan on getting?
post #8 of 17
Classes, positive reinforcement, a tired dog is a good dog So lots of things to keep him busy, and if he is not neutered, that would likely help a lot too.
post #9 of 17
Thread Starter 
The Mastiff will be around 13 weeks when we get her.

Since we live in the city, we don't have any land but we do have a garden and our apartment has two floors we can easily seperate with a gate if need be. Also a cat door on the bedroom's door is another plan so the cat can use that room as a area away from the dogs.
post #10 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by thespring
The Mastiff will be around 13 weeks when we get her.

Since we live in the city, we don't have any land but we do have a garden and our apartment has two floors we can easily seperate with a gate if need be. Also a cat door on the bedroom's door is another plan so the cat can use that room as a area away from the dogs.
Sounds like you have a good set up to where the dogs and cats can have their space and if you get a new kitten the other cat will need some space away from the young one too till it gets to know the new member of the family. I don't see a problem in getting another kitty but just remember that you may need an extra litter box but my cats always share, it's just something that you won't know till it happens.
post #11 of 17
I would enroll the Mastiff in puppy classes as soon as you get him, our dog was trained by 3 months old and it made it much easier when we brought a cat in at 4 months.
post #12 of 17
Thread Starter 
Is a puppy trainable at 3 months?
I thought they were trained after 6 months because their neurological development wasn't enough till then.
post #13 of 17
No, puppies should be enrolled in puppy kindergarten as soon as their second round of shots are taken care of. This can be as young as 12 -16 weeks of age.
Training is much more than just learning commands. This first round of training generally consists of some gentle obedience but mainly deals with adequate socialization for your puppy which is extremely important.
Here is a snippet of information regarding puppy kindergarten:

"The Puppy Kindergarten classes are in fact, the most important training course you could ever take for your puppy. The two biggest mistakes people make with their new puppies is they shelter the dog from the outside world and also make the dog dependant on the owner resulting in separation anxiety later on.
The first 6 months of your dog's life is extremely important. His environment during this time will greatly affect his attitude about the world around for the rest of his life. You must use this critical period in your dog's development, to ensure your dog has a good confident attitude toward everything in his environment meaning, lots of positive exposure to everything he may encounter in his life so he is not fearful of anything.
The other mistake is, the owner does not give the dog time to himself and spends every minute with the dog including sleeping. The dog develops dependency and later cannot deal with the stress of being separated from the owner.
At puppy kindergarten, you will learn how to develop a proper relationship with your dog and also develop the proper attitudes in his furry little head so as to avoid those big mistakes people make with puppies. "
post #14 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by Loveysmummy
Personally, I think that you should slowly add one pet at a time and not get ahead of yourself. First, the pug needs training (and I agree that that trainer was an idiot to tell you that) and then the Mastiff will need training...Once this is accomplished, then think about the cat...Otherwise, its a recipe for disaster.
i agree! I would see to it that your little pug is trained first and then you can start to look into getting a kitty. I applaud you for asking our advice and opinions and not just rushing out to get a kitty- that took a lot of discipline on your side, and i am positive that when the time is right to add a kitty, you will know- you seem like a responisble owner for trying to address the issues with your current dogs before trying to add a kitty- also, if and when u do decide to get a kitty, be sure u properly keep the cat seperated from them the first few days then gradually allow them to sniff each other under the door....then through a cage...i suggest putting a gate up that the dogs cant get the cat through, but that the kitty can jump over if it feels threatened..and to go a step further, after your pug is trained, i sugguest looking into shelters that will let you foster an animal you're interested in a few days before you finalize your adoption. There are lots of maine coons at sheleters across the country- i adopted a maine coon for my sister after her maine coon of 12 yrs passed. She came from the shelter i worked at and i personally hand raisedher and fostered her in my home. Shelter cats make wonderful pets- and you would be saving a life...i suggest sites like www.petfinder.com they have a ton of maine coons on there that are in need of a home. I recently adopted a dog with my boyfriend and the shelter he came from let us foster him in my boyfriends home for 3 days to see how he blended into our lives and homes.( we live in different houses, so i visit frequently.) It was a great idea- we learned a lot about him and were so happy with him we went back and formally adopted him on the third day...a lot of shelters are doing that now....so if it doesn't work out, at least the animal got a lot of love and tlc for a few days, and you will know you tried...and if it does work out, you will know you're making the right decision...i really recommend fostering before you adopt to see how your dogs react. your first responsibility is to the pets you already own...so see how that handle a new pet in their environment...if they handle it well, go for it, but if not...then i wouldn't stress them out by adding the new animal into their home. Good luck!
post #15 of 17
Thread Starter 
Thank you.
Our Pug started his training yesterday . We're just going to wait to see how that works out and take everything step by step depending on how he changes afterward.
post #16 of 17
even if you get a Main coon, hes still a cat and no match for the size of a dog. All you have to do is make sure the dogs know the cat is the dominant one and dont leave them alone until you know for sure how the dogs react to certain things. My cats and dogs are separated right now because my new cat is a little to frisky with the dogs and the one dog does not like that and he will bite him, so be prepared to make some adjustments for awhile
post #17 of 17
One more thing to add to the above.......

Cats and dogs in a home setting usually just get along. A lot might depend on dog breed and how old the dog is. I have cats now and a dauchaund, a saint bernard mix and a lab mix. They all get along just fine.

But don't let someone else train your dog. You train your dog. Go to classes with him or do it at home. Don't take him somewhere and drop him off to be trained. You want him to respond to you and it is also a bonding experience and will draw you and your animal closer together.

Jenn
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