Introducing new puppy to my cats

Discussion in 'Labrador Puppies' started by Sally C, Jan 22, 2015.

  1. Sally C

    Sally C Registered Users

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    Hi again!

    So I was hoping some of you cat owners on the site would share with me how you introduced them to your new puppy?

    I will be crate training and have had put up a baby gate - the pup will have the utility/kitchen as his area until fully house trained (have moved cat food outside of here), and to give the cats some peace. Once house trained the upstairs will always be kitty territory only :)

    Is it wise to just let them suss each other out under close supervision? Should the cats be held and brought into meet the dog briefly first? What did you do for the first meeting?

    Also, the pup will have constant contact with me/boyfriend/mum for first month but when I start back to work and have to leave him for 2 hour stretches, is it wise to leave him unsupervised even if things have initially gone well? My problem is that the utility area has the back door with catflap so I was thinking I could maybe leave him in a large puppy pen? I would never crate him for 2 hours alone unless at night.

    I have seen Pippa's advice in another comment about rewarding the pup when he gives me attention and not the cats, and will do this regularly from the get go. But any other advice/experience greatly appreciated!

    Thanks again! (I love this site!)

    S
     
  2. LovelyBonny

    LovelyBonny Registered Users

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    Re: Introducing new puppy to my cats

    Hello!
    Don't know if this is the "official" advice but this is what I did with my cat (who is 4) and Bonny when she came home at 8 weeks.

    The car initially wouldn't go too close to the dog, but once she started to go sniffing for her and Bonny would bound up to the cat, coco would simply jump out of the way and up high. Now Bonny is 6 months they're he best of friends and when coco has had enough of Bonny she lets her know.

    Play it by ear (is that how you say it? Haha) and don't panic too much, animals are very clever and can read each others body languAge very well. It is a good idea to reward the puppy for attention to you rather than cats though.

    That being said - I'm still technically a puppy newbie so don't take my post too literally! Xx
     
  3. Sally C

    Sally C Registered Users

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    Re: Introducing new puppy to my cats

    Hey thanks, that's good to hear! So did you just let them hang out in the same room initially? Did you feel confident leaving them unsupervised when you went out? There's lots of space for the cats to get high/escape if necessary so I'm probably just worrying over nothing... I just don't want them to get croccapupped on day one and then hate him forever!!x
     
  4. Mollly

    Mollly Registered Users

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    Re: Introducing new puppy to my cats

    This is what I did with my last puppy when we still had a cat.

    Firstly, I nipped the very ends of the cats nails. Puppies eyes are so protuberant and I didn't want to risk my cat scratching the pups eyes. I left enough so she could climb the fence etc, I was lucky that she wasn't a scrapper

    I would stroke each animal in turn to transfer their smell from one another.

    The puppy was not allowed upstairs so the cat still had a safe warm haven upstairs.
     
  5. LovelyBonny

    LovelyBonny Registered Users

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    Re: Introducing new puppy to my cats

    Yep, basically just left them to it. Cats are very clever and if I remember correctly, coco just jump from
    Object to object for days without her feet ever touching the ground :p I wouldn't worry about it, they'll be best friends soon :) x
     
  6. Jane Martin

    Jane Martin Registered Users

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    Re: Introducing new puppy to my cats

    These two get along fine but my other cat has to be let in and out avoiding my pup still (after 9 months!)

    [​IMG][/url]Chepi and Dooley by jchambersmartin, on Flickr[/img]
     
  7. Sally C

    Sally C Registered Users

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    Re: Introducing new puppy to my cats

    Thanks everyone, some very good ideas there! He's here and they've met and I think the cats are horrified about the new family member but I'm sure they'll get used to it. I'm keeping pup in a pen for a few days and I think the cats are slowly sniffing him out... each time he looks at me instead of the cat I give him a kibble or toy. He is such a cutie, will post pics soon!
     
  8. MontysMum

    MontysMum Registered Users

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    Re: Introducing new puppy to my cats

    I'm having a nightmare with ours.

    Brought our pup home when he was 12 weeks, baby gate is on th stairs, with a gap big enough on one side or the cat to get through. Our 16 year old cat freaked out and has moved upstairs. He messed once when he was stressed about getting past the dog to the cat flap.
    Our pup is now 7 months and the cat hates him, so much so I sadly have had to put a litter tray upstairs and now the poor cat never goes out. It's sad to see him meowing on the stairs for attention (he's a tabby, therefore very vocal), while the dog is in the living room with us.
    We are also moving soon and they'll have to be in the same car for 1 1/2 hours.

    Have decided that once the pup is a year old, we will remove the gate and let them work it out, I know it sounds cruel, but I'd rather they sorted it out between them and either they end up ignoring each other or getting along. I just don't know how else to deal with it now :-[
     
  9. Sally C

    Sally C Registered Users

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    Re: Introducing new puppy to my cats

    That's such a shame it didn't go more smoothly for you. I'm sure there's still hope...

    I have my pup in a pen in the utility and the cats are having to go past him to get in and out of cat flap. I'm finding that if the puppy is in a safe confined space the cats are becoming curious and slowly sniffing around the area. Whenever my pup gets a bit too lively I chuck a few kibbles on the ground, or hold them in my hand and give them to him when he looks at me.

    I'm going to keep this separation for a few days and make sure I fuss over the cats while in a separate room - I'm giving them poached fish tit bits morning and evening too. The next stage is: I will let the pup explore the utility/kitchen area when the cats are locked away, then will pop him back in his pen. Then I'll let the cats back in so they can get used to his scent being in the vicinity.

    Next stage: will let pup out of pen but on leash only and will supervise contact and any chasing will be instantly nipped in bud. And attention on me will be rewarded with extra plush treats and affection. My boyfriend will be on hand in case the cats want to run to him. I have plenty of high spaces for the cat to jump up on, and also have baby gate. When pup is fully housetrained and can be let into living room, the furniture will remain solely for cats use.

    Perhaps you could try something like this? Especially when you get into your new house as it might be easier to set up new restrictions/monitored contact?

    Good luck, I really feel for you as seeing my cats distressed at the new family member is upsetting but I'm hoping with the right guidance they'll get there. I'm sure there's a way for you too!
     
    BlackLabS20 likes this.
  10. nhighnote414

    nhighnote414 Registered Users

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    It's a bad things didn't go better for you. I'm confident there is yet hope...


    I keep my puppy in a pen in the utility room, and the cats have to walk around him to get in and out of the cat flap. I've discovered that if the puppy is in a safe contained location, the cats become intrigued and begin sniffing about the area. When my dog becomes overly excitable, I toss a few kibbles on the ground or keep them in my palm and give them to him when he looks at me.
    I'm going to retain this separation for a few days and make sure I care over the kitties when they're in their own room - I'm also offering them poached salmon tit pieces in the morning and evening. After that, I'll let the pup explore the utility/kitchen area while the cats are locked away, then put him back in his kennel. Then I'll allow the cats back in so they can become accustomed to his presence.

    Next stage: will allow pup out of pen but only on leash, will observe contact, and any chasing will be stopped immediately. And my undivided attention will be rewarded with extra plush goodies and tenderness. My partner will be nearby in case the cats come running to him. I have lots of high places for the cat to jump, as well as a baby gate. When the puppy is properly housetrained and can be allowed into the living room, the furnishings will be reserved exclusively for cat usage.
    Could you attempt anything like this? Especially when you move into a new home, when it may be simpler to implement additional restrictions/monitored contact?

    Good luck; I feel for you since watching my cats disturbed by the new family member is difficult, but I'm hopeful that with the correct direction, they'll get there. I'm sure there is a method for you as well!
     
  11. nhighnote414

    nhighnote414 Registered Users

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    That's Good
     

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