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Old 05-23-2008, 06:01 PM
 
93 posts, read 329,653 times
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My boyfriend and I just adopted an 8 week old kitten. We already own a 7 month old mixed puppy. He has never been aggressive to any animals and hasn't been towards the kitten. He is about 30 pounds which is huge compared to the tiny kitten, and he just wants to play so badly he can't stand it. He runs up, licks the kitten, and eventually starts nibbling (he's a rough player thanks to my boyfriend and him playing everyday) and then gets in trouble and doesn't understand why. He's had to spend much longer in his cage since the kitten's been here and I feel sorry for him. We just got the kitten this morning, so I'm hoping once he gets over it being here, he'll leave it alone. Is there anything I can do to help the adjustment? The kitten doesn't seem to mind the gigantic dog pushing it around, but eventually he'll run which makes the dog chase after him. I'm just not sure how to go about this?
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Old 05-23-2008, 06:32 PM
 
Location: Fort Worth, Texas
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I should imagine the kitten will eventually sink a claw into the dogs nose and the dog will acquire a new found respect for all things feline.

I wouldn't leave them alone but in time they will adjust and probably become the best of friends.

I would try taking the puppy for a LONG walk and exhaust him, then allow the kitten access to him. That might even the score a little.

You should take plenty of pictures of them, I imagine they are so cute together.
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Old 05-23-2008, 06:46 PM
 
Location: The Great State of Arkansas
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And tell boyfriend to cool it on the rough play...at least until kitty crisis is over. A dog can't differentiate at that age between rough play with two-leggers or four-leggers. They probably will become best friends but just keep an eye out for prey drive. In the meantime, get a folded card table or a baby gate with mesh and put the dog and cat in separate rooms where they can see and smell but not get at one another...the kitten is a little young to be defending itself. They will most likely adjust just fine, but it's like putting a toddler and a 9 year old together, they're just playing at different levels. Give them time to get used to one another and the kitty time to find some hiding spots before putting them together...it's very early in the game!
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Old 05-23-2008, 09:01 PM
 
Location: Deep in the Heart of Texas
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Sam I Am has good advice. The kitten must have a safe place to play and you should supervise closely all interactions with your dog. While the dog may be deterred from rough play by a scratch on the nose, it is also possible that a scratch could incite the dog to attack the kitten. Your kitten is about a mouthful for your dog, and a terrorized kitten is not a good thing.

Please consider the age of your kitten. At 8 weeks, your kitten is at a critical age for socialization. From now until about 14 weeks old, what your kitten experiences will mold the cat he will become. He should have lots of human contact and gentle play. If your dog is allowed to scare him too often into hiding, the kitten may not develop into a confident well-adjusted cat. Keeping them separated may be a pain right now, but it will pay off in the end with a calm cat and dog that will respect each other's boundaries. So, take it easy and keep the interactions limited and fear and stress free for a few months.
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Old 05-23-2008, 09:07 PM
 
Location: Fort Worth, Texas
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Leo, you are so right. One of the best cats I ever had was one I got right after I was almost killed in a car accident. I was injured and staying close to home. He slept over my heart as I sat in a recliner, rode in the pocket of my robe from room too room because one of my hands had a cast on it. That first part of his life with me always being there for him, bonded us very closely.
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Old 05-23-2008, 09:27 PM
 
Location: Florida
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put up a baby gate so kitty can escape and puppy can't go into his domain.
Eventually kitty will jump the gate, slap your pup around and then train you to feed him on command.
Puppy should not get corrected for trying to play w/ the kitty ....its actually good behavior and positive.

You could use lots of treats and teach puppy to down when the kitty is in the room.
I have a friend who has a large dog that they taught to lay down when he plays w/ smaller animals.

distract him when kitty is around and then kitty won't be the best squeak toy around. It really does work out. ...it took about 6 months for our cat and dog to get along
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Old 05-23-2008, 09:44 PM
 
93 posts, read 329,653 times
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Thanks for the advice. I just feel so bad discipling my dog ever few minutes. He doesn't mean any harm, but he does get really excited when the kitten runs and wants to chase him, and the only way he knows how to catch is with his mouth or by pinning the kitten with his paw, which is not safe. So he gets in trouble. The problem is separating them. The dog's cage is in our room, and he sleeps with us at night. We were going to have the kitten do the same. Should we have him sleep out in the rest of the apartment and shut our door until he gets a little older and they adjust to each other? And kelly3120, how do I get the dog to understand he's being too rough without making playing with the kitten sound negative?
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Old 05-24-2008, 05:58 AM
 
Location: Florida
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Quote:
Originally Posted by laf10 View Post
Thanks for the advice. I just feel so bad discipling my dog ever few minutes. He doesn't mean any harm, but he does get really excited when the kitten runs and wants to chase him, and the only way he knows how to catch is with his mouth or by pinning the kitten with his paw, which is not safe. So he gets in trouble. The problem is separating them. The dog's cage is in our room, and he sleeps with us at night. We were going to have the kitten do the same. Should we have him sleep out in the rest of the apartment and shut our door until he gets a little older and they adjust to each other? And kelly3120, how do I get the dog to understand he's being too rough without making playing with the kitten sound negative?
when puppy gets to rough ...call him off and then ask for a trick.
Do NOT and I say this from experience call him off kitty and then give him a treat ...teaches him to go bug the kitty and then get a treat from you ....ask for tricks and then a treat. He's a puppy it will take a while.

ask for a down when the kitty is around and brib him w/ treats and let kitten gets closer. This might start w/ the kitten on the other side of the baby gate and progress from there. so the next day when kitty is closer ask for a down again ..then your puppy is learning that if he is calm around the kitten he gets treats. Expect little outburst HE's a puppy! He will slowly associate kitty w/ calm behavior and treats ....making kitty very positive in his brain!

as far as sleeping arrangements are concerned, I would keep the puppy in my room and let the cat roam. CAts don't usually stay in a room all night anyways and I don't know about you but kitty 4am zoomies get old.
My chidhood cat was locked in the laundry room at night.
Our cat was locked on the porch at night his last 6 months and he had a blast chasing lizards and spiders.

hope that helps
Don't expect it to happen overnight. One day you will come home to find them snuggling on your pillow, but the minute they see you the cats gonna hit the dog and walk away.
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Old 05-25-2008, 03:19 PM
 
93 posts, read 329,653 times
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Separating them with a few hours of controlled contact every day has helped these past few days. They're even starting to play together, although this has to be very monitored because the puppy gets hyper and rough, but I'm taking it as a good sign! The puppy is also getting to where he'll take a nap if the cat is in the room, which hasn't happened before, so we're hoping that soon we can let the cat in our room at night to sleep too! Thanks for all the advice!
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Old 05-25-2008, 07:36 PM
 
Location: Deep in the Heart of Texas
1,479 posts, read 7,031,596 times
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Excellent news! Thanks for the update, and I hope the situation continues to improve.
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