couple fights like cats and dogs!
Is there really a centuries old
undeclared war between these two
species? Why is it that some
"mixed species couples" get along
famously, while others seem to
verify the stereotype?
and cats might not get along with
each other for a few reasons. Most
likely, one or both were not
socialized to the other species
during their critical learning
Dogs end their primary
socialization period at about 16
weeks of age. Cats mature out of
their sensitive learning period at
about 10 to 12 weeks.
When puppies and kittens are
introduced to a different species
during these early weeks, the brain
is most ready to accept new
individuals into the social circle.
In later weeks, there is a tendency
to treat new individuals as
"outsiders" to be distrusted.
Without early introductions, dogs
and cats tend to treat new
individuals as "outsiders" that
can't be trusted.
You can help your cat overcome
social disabilities from lack of
early kitten socialization but count
on a lot of time, patience, and
Learning can overcome this bias over
enough time and with a good
You need to prevent the dog
from chasing the cat and
teach the dog new ways
to greet a cat.
The second most common reason
that dogs and cats don't get
along is because pet parents do
not prevent the dog from chasing
the cat. In some breeds, chasing
the cat triggers the canine
predatory instinct which can be
dangerous to the cat!
When presented with a charging dog,
most cats will run. This triggers
the chase instinct in the canine
brain, and flashes a, "Chase
prey!" signal. Cats are not
natural prey of dogs, but in the
heat of the moment, all is forgotten
except the thrill of the chase.
In most cases, if the cat stops
running, the chase is over and the
dog loses interest. The real problem
comes when a cycle starts and the
dog becomes constantly on alert for
an opportunity to play the
chase-the-cat game. The chased cat
responds fearfully by hiding or
aggressively by attacking. Rarely
does the cat respond friendly.
For dogs with a strong
predatory instinct, the dog may not
be able to lower his arousal that
quickly and may pursue the cat.
Once the dog gets into a vicious cycle of chasing the cat
and getting a thrill, changing this
pattern is much harder.
dogs with a tendency toward
predatory aggression, and if
the cat is caught by the
dog, the dog may try to kill
and even begin to eat the
naturally fear and will avoid dogs
who chase them,
cats may turn aggressive towards
dogs. There are a few exceptions
with individual cats who do see this
as play because the dog never harms