Thursday, October 21, 2010

Cats and Greyhounds

My greyhounds have always lived with cats. Some have been harder than others to learn that cats have rights too. Cats are not to be chased, displaced from where they are sleeping or harassed. In fact they often learn that the quickest way to please me is to ignore the cats. Bacchus my new black cat obviously had never lived with dogs when I adopted him. He didn't want to be on the dogs level. His running away behavior was him causing to be chased. However with time he has learned to be more bold, less fearful. Now he sleeps on the dogs bed whenever he choses-and the dogs will not try to push him off.

However a dog on their bed is not be haressed either.Dogs and cats generally stay in their own bed/spaces.

Many years ago I had a greyhound Merlin who rid my farm of all living small creatures-skunks,feral cats and would try for coyotes, deer you name it. He was the ultimate hunter. I adopted an awesome dogwise adult cat-Sherman. It took Sherman a little while to establish the rules of the house with Merlin and my other greyhounds. However establish them he did. As much as they tried to run him he would sit still, hold his ground and stare at them. If the dogs were eating and he wanted to see what they were eating he would smack them away from the food bowl-and they listened.If they were laying on a bed that he wanted-he climbed up and laid with them-and they learned to accept it.

Many dogs learn to live with cats in the house but outside is a different matter.
Since my cats are generally inside/outside if they choose it is necessary for the dogs to learn to leave them alone outside as well. Odd but the dogs do know their own cats. Mine will still attempt to chase neighborhood cats but are learning to leave their/mine alone.

Sherman and my greyhounds would go for walks with me around the farm, sometimes upwards of a mile. Although the dogs didn't wait for him to catch up to them they knew he was there and didn't attempt to chase him. A tolerate nonreactive adult cat like Sherman makes training the greyhounds to live with cats easy.


jet said...

One of my cats is quite territorial and so while she is a bit over-the-top with the dogs she has never been chased. They do say it makes a huge difference if you have one of those dominant/no nonsense cats first. When I was talking to people about 'cat safe hounds' they said often their cats will tell them if the dog is safe by walking in front of them, sitting on their beds etc.

Barbie will sometimes focus on a cat outside if she sees it run across the road on our walks, but she doesn't even notice when ours run right past her in the house, or even in the yard. It only took her a couple of weeks to be completely comfortable with the cats in our household.

houndstooth said...

We don't have cats anymore, but I had one who probably cured about a dozen Greyhounds of EVER looking at a cat again. We called him The Enforcer when he went into attack mode. I didn't have much trouble with my own hounds and cats for the most part.

Greyhounds CAN Sit said...

I haven't got a cat but Beryl is supposedly cat friendly and Frankie would be cat trainable with the right cat! I like things how they are though so won't be getting a cat:-) They both keep the neighbours cats out of our yard.

Sandy ~~~ said...

Our latest Greyhound, Creel, was adopted a year ago this weekend. He was classified "not cat safe" but we saw good intentions in him and knew we had to slooooooowly wean him into our cat family. We crated him during the day (with his frozen Kong) while we were at work and allowed the cats to be loose in the house. After a good 9 months of them interacting with a crate inbetween we started having them loose together in the evening while we watched TV, Creel on lead and muzzled. It was obvious he was SO used to the cats being around the lead and muzzle came off in a few nights and they have been buddies since then. He is still funny to watch when the cats headbump him and tickle his tummy as they walk under him. The outdoor feral cats who live in the barn are another story though...and they are more clever and faster than he so it's pretty fair!

Never Say Never Greyhounds said...

We just found a kitten last night :-(. We have it in an ex pen in our basement and are trying to find a home for it. Great story about Sherman.