Dog/cat relations.

I come today not with a topic, but with a question. Which I’m expecting may not have an answer… but I thought I’d ask anyways.

How do you make a dog and cat not hate each other?

It seems like most people have dogs or cats. We had both growing up, but they hated each other. Which was fine at the time. I guess we were really more dog people and the cats just kind of lived there, mostly in the basement where the dogs weren’t allowed. They’d come up and we’d pet them but then the dogs would chase them back downstairs and thats just how it was.

Well, when B and I moved in together I had a dog, and he had two cats. We have employed several methods to give the cats a safe place to hide from Stew so they get a break from him whenever they want (cat door and baby gates). At first the cats were just completely terrified of Stew. They didn’t come out of the basement hardly at all for months and I felt terrible.

Over the course of the last two years, however, it has definitely gotten better. Change has happened slowly, but Stew and Milo’s relationship has definitely progressed from where it was to begin with. (Which looked something like this).

They’re not friends exactly, but they basically leave each other alone. Milo can go anywhere in the house, including our laps, without raising much of an eyebrow from Stew. This basically happened through a series of smack-downs Milo handed out to Stew. We tend to let confrontation happen because we hoped that getting his nose scratched might encourage Stew to leave the cats alone. And it did, for Milo.

But see… Cali is a wimp. She just runs and almost never fights back. Which means any time she ventures into Stew’s eye-sight, she is a target. And she certainly can’t ever be near us without his chasing her away. This has been the situation for at least the last 8 months or so. It just seems as though her progress has stalled.

Do we just accept that we’ll never be able to have all three pets peacefully coexisting in the same room?

Do we try to force confrontation so that Cali smacks Stew and he learns to give her a bit of respect?

Do we try some other method of getting Stew to just leave her the hell alone?

I’m running out of patience for their nightly game of cat/mouse (or dog/cat… I guess).

Any thoughts for solution appreciated!

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2 thoughts on “Dog/cat relations.

  1. Aww, I don’t have any good advice, but I’m sad for your scaredy cat!

    My husband won’t let us get a dog, since he says it won’t be fair to our cats. Which is true. We already have turf wars as it is, where two of our cats don’t really get along, so the more dominant one gets the main floor of our house, and the scaredy cat gets the basement. He only comes upstairs to go to the kitchen for food, but always runs away when my husband is walking around, or the other cat makes him.

    So, no good advice. Animals are just weird, and I’m not sure there’s any good way to force them to get along. Maybe just make time everyday to give Cali some undivided attention/kitty loving, away from Stew, and make her feel like part of the family that way?

  2. Thanks for the comment, Morgan. I think I just get so frustrated because he gets alone fine(ish) with Milo now so I know it is POSSIBLE for them to get along, they just choose not to. Although he got in Cali’s face last night and she gave him a few good shots to the schnoz so maybe she will teach him some respect yet haha.

    And yea, we do keep the pets separated on a daily basis. We have a man cave/second living room on the lower level of our house that we keep separated by a baby gate at all times. The cats hang out down there all day and Stew is upstairs. I usually spend a few hours working down in the man cave during the day so the cats can hang out with me without Stew interfering. Then at night we usually have at least an hour or so down here hanging out before we let Stew down, so they do get to spend time with us alone. I just wish it wasn’t so much work and separation all the time!

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