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Tips on indroducing new dog to cats

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last week we adopted a neglected but not abused 35 kilo 2 year old pit bull mix dog. He is very friendly with people and has shown zero sign of aggression when being washed or picked up to get into the car ( he now jumps into the car without hesitation ) He comes when called is  very submissive to commands.

We also have a four month old kitten which has no fear and will try to play with the dogs tail !. So far the dog has not made any aggressive actions  towards the kitten however he does seem to want to follow her, but he  ignores our adult cat. We feel 99 % sure he won't hurt the kitten but the 1% chance has us on edge. The dog seems to fixate on the kitten which is very energetic of course and plays with anything.

What tips do you all have to ensure a safe environment for the kitten. We always snap him out of the fixation, but this gets tiresome. Should we get a shock collar and  allow him to get close and then give him a shock he will associate with moving towards the kitten ? How about a muzzle and see what he does without any risk ?

When walking him he also want to run up to other dogs and the few times he was loose nothing really happened. One time while on leash two small dogs came up behind him and tried to bite him. His response was surprise but no retaliation.

We have an appointment on Monday to have him neutered.

Thanks for any advice

 

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I would not leave the two together until the cat is older. It's just not safe.  Kittens are just too innocent as they have no fear or boundaries.  A more mature cat would have learned to be more careful around a dog. That combined with the size difference and abilities, etc., it's all just too risky.

I have successfully obedience trained three dogs, however, I have not had to face the challenge you have.  I don't know if my comment will be of help to you, but I would not combine the two for quite a while.

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Unfortunately you are dealing with a breed that has been bred for generations to be aggressive toward small animals. In all honesty you can try training but it may or may not work. I have know of Pit Bulls who got along fine with their cats. I have also know of pitties who snapped at something the cat did and killed it.

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We don't leave them alone together. This morning he went right up to the kitten and they touched noses, nothing more. The kitten did hiss but wasn't overly alarmed.

After further review we think he may more boxer than Pitbull. His head is wider than most breeds but not as wide as a Pitbull's and he has the tan with a little white coloration.

Hopefully once the cat grows up he will ignore it like he does with our adult cat who gives the dog a wide berth.

He does have a problem with other dominant male dogs though. There is purebred Pitbull close by behind a fence and they probably would have gotten into a fight if they we loose together

How is Ajijic dog school for socializing him and will neutering help with this situation ?

 

 

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If you have the slightest doubt about him having ANY Pit Bull in him, I would NEVER trust him with either cat.... but especially the kitten.

Neutering is a necessity, not an option.... but understand it will take about 8 weeks for male hormones to subside.  And his mindset will not be altered in any case.

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Your best bet is to do obedience training with him. Recall, sit, stay, down, STOP (or whatever word or sound you use for ceasing any activity). The more solid he is with obeying your voice commands the less likely there is to be an issue. I adopted a four-year-old dog from a shelter and had three cats. The dog thought cats were for chasing. I had a two-hour in home session with a trainer. Two weeks of intensely working with my dog and there was no more problem. Have had the dog six years now and all is well. May be good to assess the dog’s prey drive. My dog’s is moderate. Her desire to please and be part of the pack is stronger. Best of luck.

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10 hours ago, camillenparadise said:

PLEASE don't use a shock collar! Or try it on yourself first...…

I gather from this that a shock collar is either cruel or causes permanent psychological damage to the dog ? I've never used one. I thought it was just a mild shock...

good idea to try it on oneself to get a true feeling of what they do.

 

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Yes the prey instinct is more important than the breed, if your dog has a high prey instinct be careful with small animals, do not assume they will eventually be ok. They maybe and then they may not.. If he is an alpha dog be careful with other animals and train him well..Fix him first chance you get as well.

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9 hours ago, ea93105 said:

I gather from this that a shock collar is either cruel or causes permanent psychological damage to the dog ? I've never used one. I thought it was just a mild shock...

good idea to try it on oneself to get a true feeling of what they do.

 

It depends on the collar.  I have one that we used to train an eighty lb. AmStaff.  It can be dialed back to just a tone to get the dogs attention when he's out of sight.  They use these to train hunting dogs and other disciplines that require the dog to be away from the handler.

Back to your problem.....I have 2 pitties and wouldn't trust either of them with a cat for 30 seconds.  "Lily" might even get off the couch if a cat walked through. Prey drive is something that can't be trained out.

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Happy to report that our new dog seems completely comfortable with our cats. The kitten laid belly up on the floor and allowed him to smell her thoroughly.  She gave a little bit of pawing but nothing at all from the dog in the way of preying or wanting to do anything harmful. Then he smelled our adult cat for a while it calmly walked away. No aggressive moves whatsoever and the cats are not reading anything dangerous either. We were close by to make sure nothing happened btw.

Now we have to work on his dominant behavior towards other dogs..

We think he is mostly boxer now

Getting neutered on Monday

Thanks again

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Lessons or walks for socialization with Art Hess would be my next step. Art is the local dog whisperer and I always do an occasional check with him if having anything questionable with my dogs. Here is his email address artthedogguy@yahoo.com.

You might also try Jorge Rivera's dog school. I am not sure what his school name is but he is another dog whisperer. He has a daycare program at which the dogs get to play but there is also an obedience component as he makes sure all the dogs are well behaved. I contact him by Facebook but will get a phone number for you if you wish.

If it were me, I would start with Art and progress to Jorge.

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42 minutes ago, nothernewbie said:

Lessons or walks for socialization with Art Hess would be my next step. Art is the local dog whisperer and I always do an occasional check with him if having anything questionable with my dogs. Here is his email address artthedogguy@yahoo.com.

You might also try Jorge Rivera's dog school. I am not sure what his school name is but he is another dog whisperer. He has a daycare program at which the dogs get to play but there is also an obedience component as he makes sure all the dogs are well behaved. I contact him by Facebook but will get a phone number for you if you wish.

If it were me, I would start with Art and progress to Jorge.

Thanks for the contact info

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20 hours ago, ea93105 said:

We think he is mostly boxer now

This is what a Boxer dog's head looks like. Note the nose shape. Anything else is probably Pitbull whose heads vary a great deal.

boxer.jpg

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Our boy

He doesn't have the drooping skin around his mouth and the nose is not as stubby.

A Mexican said he was a Mexican boxer..

BOTAS.JPG

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Well, they are both beauties, and so glad to hear there is kittie-love~ my boy just loves kitties and chewing their cheeks, and having his chewed in return. Then the round-the-yard tail chases, and goes on until all are exhausted.....I have taken care   of houses and dogs and cats and gardens for the last twelve years, many references.

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6 minutes ago, ea93105 said:

So do you all think he is mostly boxer or pittbull ?

He is probably not "mostly" anything but dog. As my grandfather would have said he is a Heinz 57. So many of the dog her are the offspring of many generations of mixed breeds that is is unrealistic to try to pin a breed to them. There are a lot of pitties (mixed) and Boxers here (both pure and mixed) that it is likely that there is some in there. The important thing for any dog

is training .

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Yes, we are making sure we are the pack leaders, he has dominant traits but responds well to commands.

He has a very very strong musty smell, we think it is a skin fungus called "melazazia" but we will confirm on Monday.  We shampooed him with some special soap. He has a lot of dandruff 

 

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Used to have a very large Great Dane many years ago and a scruffy kitty that was a stray. Ryah had her own chair and her tail hung down to almost the floor when she was curled up in it. We'd say "Thump your tail Ryah" and she'd start beating a tattoo against the chair. The kitty would fly out and start attacking the "snake" sitting on her hind legs and batting at it with both paws. Too funny! They were good buds.

Neutering and training and close observation. Art Hess is WONDERFUL... my Cora would have turned herself inside out for him.

 

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