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Older cat and looking after a puppy. Help needed.(14 Posts)
We are looking after our relation's puppy whilst they go on holiday for a few weeks.
Pup will be 6 months old and hopefully fully toilet trained by the time comes.
As the puppy will be staying at our home, I am looking for advice on the best way to get the pup and our gentle old cat happily sharing our house.
Pup came over for a visit recently and our cat watched him from back of sofa watching him. Our cat hissed once when the puppy jumped near him but was fairly calm and laid back overall. We were sat with our cat and stroked him to keep him calm.
We accidently kept one of the pups toys, after the visit. But we have been moving it around downstairs and our cat has been sniffing at the toy getting use to the scent.
The pup is being crate trained and will bring his crate with him. Which I hope will help.
Plus we will be putting baby gate on the bottom of the stairs, so all of upstairs will be just for our cat (and kids) if they need break from the puppy.
All advice welcome.
In all honesty, I think I would focus on giving the cat plenty of space that is safely away from the puppy (as you are doing) and ensuring they have a clear exit route to the garden without having to go past the puppy. That might mean letting them in and out the front door, for example.
In short - allowing the cat to never see the puppy if they don't want to.
At six months old the puppy will be right at the end of the time during which 'getting used' to other species is easy. Much will depend on his experiences with cats and other species by that time. The best you can do is not make a big deal of the cat or make the cat seem exciting or fun and hope the puppy follows suit. I'd want the pup to think the cat is the DULLEST creature in the world .
I don't think the scent thing is important as I would imagine your wiley old cat knows full well what the puppy is all about and so it's how the puppy behaves that will determine how the cat reacts (not whether he knows the smell).
"I'd want the pup to think the cat is the DULLEST creature in the world."
That sounds perfect. Pup lives with his owners and no other animals but meets plenty of dogs.
I just don't want my cat upsetting, as he deserves some peace.
The pup is a little excitable when he visits but hopefully he will have calm moments too.
I am both really looking forward to the pup visting and dreading the amount of attention baby creatures need. It will be a fun challenge.
I would have an agreed back up plan if things don’t work out . I have friends who have had older cats move out when they’ve bought a puppy in .
There is no back up plan. The owners will be abroad and we don't have the money to put pup in kennels, which is the only other option.
Atm our cat sleeps 20 hours a day, waking for cuddles, litter trays, food and back to sleep. Worse case scenario, we would have to put litter trays and food upstairs too. But I am hoping it doesn't come to that.
Baby gate. Dcat needs an escape plan.
Yes. One baby gate on bottom of stairs for sure and maybe a second one on kitchen door if we need it.
Dpuppy will only get too close once remember!
Our dcats keep our ddogs well in check!
That doesn't surprise me. Cats are normally the boss of a household aren't they, where as dogs look to you.
As long as your cat has a nice quiet area he can go maybe high up somewhere? If the puppy is too full on can you put him in his crate with a toy for a 'time out'. And maybe keep you cat indoors in case he shoots out and doesn't come back!
Good point. I think keeping DCat inside will help. He doesn't go out much in this weather anyway.
Well, things are going ok, between temporary puppy and our cat.
We put puppy outside or in crate when he is trying to play with the cat. DCat ignores puppy in the main but will snack and hiss, if he is being too excited and bouncy.
We have assigned the puppy access to the non cat sofa (DCat sleeps most of the day on his sofa cushion on the cat sofa) but as you can see from the attached photo, the puppy really wants to be near the cat on the cat sofa !
We are also doing a couple of treat sessions a day, when we have them both sitting in front of us nicely earn a treat. They both love their treats and happily sit next to each other for treat food.
The treats really seem to work well, at getting them to tolerate each other.
DCat even meowed a greeting to DDog yesterday when he came in from the garden.
So I am very hopeful they will learn to tolerate each other and if puppy will be a little calmer, maybe be friends !
Either way they will never be left unsupervised, just in case.
Oh love the photo. My sister took in my Mums old cat when my Mum went into hospital and we were all surprised that the cat and the puppy got on really well.