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poochiemama

Dog following cat everywhere

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Hi guys. I have a 10 year old golden retriever Hannah and chocolate lab Charlie. We recently got 2 new Burmese kittens. When we first got them, we got a dog trainer in to help us with introductions. Hannah was very stiff, licking lips etc, so the dog trainer suggested muzzling her and doing regular training sessions until she is more comfortable. Well things have improved a lot. Over the last few weeks, her body language has softened totally. She approaches them tail wagging, relaxed, loose mouth. It helps they are not skittish and very self assured cats. She has stated pawing at them every now and then playfully. We have got rid of the muzzle and leash and she only has a collar now. 

The only issue is that she is constantly following them around. Like constantly. Always at a respectful distance (she matches her pace to theirs and doesn’t chase). She sometimes sniffs their bum. If they turn around, sometimes they touch noses. The cats are very bold around her now, for instance rolling around on her bed right in front of her and she lets them, tail wagging still. Occasionally if they suddlenly appear out of nowhere she may stiffen up again for a short while but then relaxes.

 

My question is - are we right to be more comfortable with letting her around the cats? Is her following them around normal ? I even wondered if it was a maternal thing, like she wants to guard them or something.

 She never attempts to lunge, never growls, but we are

still so anxious as when the dog trainer first came, he thought she had a high prey drive because of how she would stiffen up and stare at them, and once she tried to chase them. But we have been working very hard since then with regular exposure to the cats so I feel things have shifted.

 

 

 

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it is always an idea to have baby gates and some cleared cupboard tops etc that the cats know about  so they can have a dog free space .  :) Sometimes communication problems can lead to  a chase if no-one's around !

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Rebanne   

I think you are pretty good. Though the disclaimer is I have read of dogs killing cats they have lived with for years. My dogs have always had free roam in the house with the cats, both German Shepherds and more recently Greyhounds. The stiffening when a cat suddenly appears could really just be because she was startled, the fact she relaxes quickly suggests to me, the cats interest her but that's about it. At 10 Hannah's hearing and sight could be less then perfect as well, hence the startle/stiffness. Just make sure the cats have a couple of bolt holes to get to.

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In answer to some of your questions, yes the cats have plenty of hiding spaces and scratching posts they can climb etc :) 

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When you say kittens, how old? Like, 12 weeks ect or older, more 6 months or so? 

 

Little kittens can be unpredictable and suddenly bounce about, which can trigger chasing.  Bum sniffing, well, it's pretty normal, lol. I have a newish kitten (9 months) and our older cat still follows her about and sniffs her butt...  

 

How is Charlie around the kittens? 

Edited by cannibalgoldfish

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Charlie is great, he pretty much ignores them or is very easily redirected.

 The kittens are around 5 months old now I think. I think they are trying to play with the dogs now,  darting in between their legs, playing peekaboo behind the curtain etc . 

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Tassie   
19 hours ago, poochiemama said:

Charlie is great, he pretty much ignores them or is very easily redirected.

 The kittens are around 5 months old now I think. I think they are trying to play with the dogs now,  darting in between their legs, playing peekaboo behind the curtain etc . 

My money is on the Burmese kittens.  They can be quite naughty, but usually able to look after themselves as long as they have escape routes.   It's good to be watchful,   and take precautions when you can't supervise to make sure that the kittens are safe (and/or that the dogs don't get monstered :rofl:.   A friend's Burmese kittens used to monster her BC … wait in ambush near the fridge at the edge of the door of the corridor leading from the rest of the house.)

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