U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Pets > Cats
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Reply Start New Thread
 
Old 12-29-2013, 07:56 AM
 
Location: Wandering in the Dothraki sea
1,342 posts, read 1,211,431 times
Reputation: 3227

Advertisements

My boyfriend and I have been getting serious over the past couple months so we decided to move in together (or rather me into his place) The problem is he has three hyper chihuahuas and I have one 10 year old moody cat.

My beloved kitty Punkin has been at our place since Thanksgiving. She has the front room to herself, and my boyfriend built a workbench so she has a nice high perch to hang out on. Her food, towels, toys, and pet carrier are up on the work bench too. While I'm glad she has a comfortable, secure spot to herself, I'm really worried because she rarely leaves her carrier. She is eating and using the litterbox as normal. (in fact, I've been spoiling her extra with treats and tuna)

When I first brought her to the house, we introduced her slowly to the dogs. She would hang out on the kitchen table and look down at them. I was in the kitchen and literally turned my back for 5 seconds...the dogs took off chasing her into the laundry room. Needless to say, I crated the dogs and held her to comfort her as much as possible. Now, I can't get her to voluntarily leave the front room. She'll come out and hang out with me, but if I carry her to any other part of the house, she scurries back to her room.

I miss her badly and I'm desperate to get her back into the household. She's always slept in the bed with me

The problem is the alpha dog, Trixie, is VERY interested in her and will bark and chase her if given the chance. The other two dogs are a lot more cooperative and give her little attention, unless Trixie initiates it.

I don't know what to do from here. Friends say give it time, but I'm really worried this isn't going to fix itself. I'm so depressed over this I'm considering moving back out, it breaks my heart to see my girl so scared like this .Any ideas on what to do?
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 12-29-2013, 08:11 AM
 
1,699 posts, read 3,371,553 times
Reputation: 3902
It will likely take time so be patient and spend lots of special time with Punkin to help her through this transition. Work mainly with Trixie but also practice the following protocol with the other 2 dogs regularly:

Cat is provided a “safe zone” to which dog does not have access.

Exercise below is practiced daily until “safe zone” is no longer necessary.

1) Teach Dog Watch and Leave It. (See videos below).

2) With dog on-leash, release cat into dog area. (Hold end of leash, sit on it, or create a tether attached to a heavy piece of furniture.) Never ever yank on the leash!

3) Ignore “bad” behavior as much as possible. (Dog is restrained/confined and should not be able to do any real damage)

4) Reward with a treat for any steps in the right direction. Examples: Dog looks at cat and stays calm, Dog voluntarily sits or lays down in cat’s presence, Dog looks at you instead of cat, etc.

5) Begin to incorporate Watch and Leave It where appropriate.

6) When dog is generally relaxed in cat’s presence, begin to allow movement throughout the room with dog still on-leash. Reward appropriate behavior. Use Watch and Leave it to redirect unwanted behavior.

7) Final step would be leash attached and dragging behind dog – step on it if necessary. Continue to provide feedback – reward good behavior, redirect inappropriate behavior.

It can also be helpful to provide the cat with rewarding / pleasurable experiences in the dogs' presence. A baby gate can be used to provide safety while still keeping the dogs in view. Feed Punkin a favorite food or do a favorite activity with her in a location where she can see the dogs while your boyfriend feeds the dogs treats to distract them.

To teach Watch / Eye Contact:



How to train a dog to pay attention - eye contact - clicker dog training - YouTube

To teach Leave it:


Leave it 1- the most important things to train- clicker dog training - YouTube

Please read this article about integrating cats & dogs:

http://www.whole-dog-journal.com
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-29-2013, 09:38 AM
 
43,012 posts, read 88,958,716 times
Reputation: 30256
Bobbles was a feral kitten we found starving to death in the middle of the road when she was 4 weeks old. The Basset is a 12 year old hound who was always fascinated by cats but never actually met one because they all run away from him outside. The Basset was thrilled when Bobbles arrived. He adored Bobbles. He wanted to be everywhere Bobbles was. Bobbles was terrified of the Basset.

Bobbles spent the first two months in my son's room upstairs. When she had full run of the house, she stayed within a 10' diameter vicinity to her litter box and cat carrier, which we had moved to the living room. Slowly, she started exploring the rest of the house by expanding her diameter. It took her weeks before she left the living room. The Basset distrusted her because she hissed and growled at him. After a few months, Bobbles was interested in the Basset and he would turn his face away and shun her because he was afraid of her.

We've had Bobbles for almost 7 months now. She is comfortable in the whole house. She and the Basset get along but they're not friends. Bobbles sometimes tries to cuddle with the Basset and he slowly sneaks away. He doesn't trust her. It seems he never will. She harasses him. For the longest time, he acted like a victim and didn't do anything. He finally growled at her and chased her a few times so she's also respecting him more.

I'm sharing this so you understand that it can take a loooooong time. Cats take even longer than kittens. Your cat will eventually need to stand up for herself so the dogs back off. She will do it one day. I promise. Everyone here at the cat forum has great experience and advice. They were very supportive and helpful with advice on how to integrate Bobbles and the Basset.

Based on my experience, here's my idea. You want her to sleep with you. She's living in one room---the front room. We moved Bobbles out of my son's bedroom after two months and set her up in the living room. Try setting up another cat carrier and litter box in your bedroom. Relocate her to the bedroom. Don't let the dogs in the bedroom. Let the bedroom be your cat's main comfort zone. At night, while the dogs and everyone is sleeping, she'll eventually climb up on the bed to sleep with you. If she hates the bedroom and escapes down to the front you, that's progress because she is learning the new layout of the house. It took Bobbles months before she figured out how different rooms connect to one another.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-29-2013, 09:48 AM
 
35,121 posts, read 37,790,060 times
Reputation: 61840
No matter how many threads you start using different titles, if the issue is the same the answers are going to be the same.

Get yourself and your cat out of that environment.
Be mad at your boyfriend not the dogs who have never been taught and disciplined
OR
Stay in the environment and continue to post your woes on a public forum even though you have done nothing to change the situation.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-29-2013, 09:56 AM
 
Location: Wandering in the Dothraki sea
1,342 posts, read 1,211,431 times
Reputation: 3227
Quote:
Originally Posted by CSD610 View Post
No matter how many threads you start using different titles, if the issue is the same the answers are going to be the same.

Get yourself and your cat out of that environment.
Be mad at your boyfriend not the dogs who have never been taught and disciplined
OR
Stay in the environment and continue to post your woes on a public forum even though you have done nothing to change the situation.
I have gotten some different answers on this thread. What's your problem? If you don't like something you're welcome to...I don't know, ignore it?
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-29-2013, 10:19 AM
 
43,012 posts, read 88,958,716 times
Reputation: 30256
Quote:
Originally Posted by CSD610 View Post
No matter how many threads you start using different titles, if the issue is the same the answers are going to be the same.

Get yourself and your cat out of that environment.
Be mad at your boyfriend not the dogs who have never been taught and disciplined
OR
Stay in the environment and continue to post your woes on a public forum even though you have done nothing to change the situation.
Lighten up. I encouraged her to come to the cat forum.

Give her a break and a chance to hear more positive perspectives.

Last edited by Hopes; 12-29-2013 at 10:33 AM..
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-29-2013, 10:21 AM
 
Location: Wandering in the Dothraki sea
1,342 posts, read 1,211,431 times
Reputation: 3227
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hopes View Post
Lighten up. I encouraged her to come to the cat forum.

Give her a break and a chance to hear more positive perspectives.
Thank you Hopes. I appreciate you recognizing that I'm trying to figure how to resolve this to everyone's mutual agreement
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-29-2013, 10:31 AM
 
4,626 posts, read 7,197,499 times
Reputation: 4735
It takes time... even with 2 cats - no dogs.

The little yappers need training!!!! They need to learn that barking and chasing is unacceptable behavior in the house.

If Trixie got a cat claw to the face, she'd back off in a nano-second. And she'd give kitty a wide-berth from then on.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-29-2013, 10:41 AM
 
43,012 posts, read 88,958,716 times
Reputation: 30256
Quote:
Originally Posted by ocngypz View Post
If Trixie got a cat claw to the face, she'd back off in a nano-second. And she'd give kitty a wide-berth from then on.
I guarantee this is true. The Basset was never aggressive towards Bobbles, but he was enthusiastically in her space when she wasn't ready. Although all of her hissing and spitting and growling was enough, I know he has had an opportunity to feel her claws. Not severely. Enough that he gave her very wide berth and walked the parameter of a room for a while before he became more comfortable with her again.

Even today there is chasing sometimes. It's like a game for them. She'll stand up on her hind legs and start batting at his face like a boxer and he'll chase her through the house. It's dramatically different from when she would scurry away and hide under furniture or in her box. They did an about face, and I reached the point I was worried for the Basset because he was the one who wasn't standing up for himself.

It takes time. A lot of time.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-29-2013, 10:52 AM
 
Location: Wandering in the Dothraki sea
1,342 posts, read 1,211,431 times
Reputation: 3227
Quote:
Originally Posted by ocngypz View Post
It takes time... even with 2 cats - no dogs.

The little yappers need training!!!! They need to learn that barking and chasing is unacceptable behavior in the house.

If Trixie got a cat claw to the face, she'd back off in a nano-second. And she'd give kitty a wide-berth from then on.
Yes, long story behind the dogs but we are working on re-training them. Brian actually suggested a bark collar of some sort. I found some that use bitter spray instead of little zaps...I'm not wholly comfortable with that idea though, I need to see if theres any kind of alternative (I have ZERO experience with dog training )

Yes, I agree Punx needs to stand up for herself. She's gotten soft in her old age. I think she feels outnumbered. I wish I could give her some confidence, she is larger than Trixie, by a lot
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:

Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Pets > Cats
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

2005-2018, Advameg, Inc.

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top