How To Introduce A German Shepherd To A Cat


Are you trying to figure out how to introduce a German Shepherd to a cat? This article will walk you through the basic steps, as well as the methods for doing so.
German shepherds are intelligent and loyal dogs with a strong hunting instinct and inherent herding instincts. These traits may make them unsuitable feline companions because they may believe the feline is worth pursuing. However, if you adopt the shepherd puppy and carefully socialize him, you can achieve peace.

What Is The Best Way To Introduce A German Shepherd To A Cat?

A careful introduction process for your German Shepherd and cat will ensure their safety. even if you think your German Shepherd and cat are compatible. Because each dog is unique, there is no set schedule for the subsequent phases. When it’s time to move on to the next stage, trust your instincts.

1st step

Keep a separate room for your cat, complete with a litter box, food and water bowls, and a place to sleep. A safe way to interact with your cat and German shepherd dog is to feed them on the other side of the room door.Your dog will also enjoy eating outside the cat’s door, which will help him think of the kitten as something good.
The American Kennel Club says that during a German shepherd puppy’s first three months, when he is most open to learning and making friends, he should only be exposed to good things.

2nd Step

Start basic training with your German shepherd puppy the moment he arrives at your house. Some of the most common instructions are “sit,” “remain,” and “leave it.” You can direct your shepherd around the kitten with these commands; if you don’t, you’re wasting your time. German shepherds are intelligent dogs who respond well to positive reinforcement and tasty treats in training. Puppy kindergarten programs can also help you teach your puppy basic obedience skills.

3rd step

Encourage your German shepherd puppy to chase animals or things, and he’ll be less likely to chase your cat around the house. Because German shepherds have strong hunting and herding instincts, they regard cats as prey or livestock to be hunted or herded. Tell your shepherd “no” and immediately stop any joyful play with him if he attempts to pursue any live creature while on a leash. Encourage him to retrieve and return doggy toys to satisfy this desire.

4th step

Keep your new German shepherd in a spacious, comfortable box while you introduce him to your cat to ensure your feline companion’s safety. Saying “no” to shepherd dogs who growl or show signs of hostility toward cats will correct the problem. If that doesn’t work, keep him in the crate or remove your cat from the situation and try again later.
Allow the dog to be alone for a while so that he realizes he has lost something special as a result of his actions. The first meeting should only last a few minutes, but as your dog shows less or no aversion to the kitten, you can gradually lengthen the meeting. You can use delectable snacks to promote a cooperative atmosphere.

5th step

Introduce the pets without the kennel, and use a leash to control the German shepherd. Allow them to interact in person with one another. Command your dog to sit and remain during the first few encounters, then gradually allow him to approach the kitten. If he stays quiet, give him praise and rewards. Otherwise, use the command “leave it” to keep him in check. You should only let your dog off the leash after many encounters of constant pleasant engagement.

6th step

Set aside a space where your German shepherd dog will not be able to approach your kitten. Make a pet door that fits a cat. Provide a box or other enclosed space for your dog. Your German shepherd will require his own enclosure if he weighs more than 90 pounds.

The Best Ways To Introduce A Dog Or A Cat

There are several methods for acclimating a dog to living with a cat. If the first one doesn’t work or you’re not comfortable with it, try an alternative introduction technique. Proceed with caution if the dog has previously been exposed to cats or if the cat has previously lived with a dog. If an intervention is required, it is preferable to have two people with you, one for each animal. If you have more than one dog, you should introduce each one to the cat separately.

Option 1: Desensitization That Is Slow And Consistent

A desensitization program may help you get your dog used to him by gradually increasing her time with the cat. Place the cat in a room with a high baby gate to keep him safe (such as a bedroom, bathroom, or spare room). You should choose a location where your dog will not be able to enter and will not be required to enter. If your dog sleeps with you at night, keep the cat out of the same room as the dog. Separate them and only allow them to see each other at specific times, as per the plan.
You can reduce your dog’s fear of the cat by gradually increasing his exposure to it.
In his room, provide the cat with everything he requires, including a litter box, toys, food, and water. Keep in mind that cats are excellent climbers and jumpers who can easily squeeze through tight spaces. Install a gate to keep your cat from escaping the yard. Cats and dogs should be able to see each other through the fence but not interact with each other.
Desensitization can begin with a brief glimpse of the cat through a fence, followed by a distracting activity such as playing with a toy or practicing commands. Keep the dog on a leash so that you can move her away from the cat if you need to divert her attention elsewhere. Reward the dog for shifting his attention away from you. Throughout the day, keep the cat close to the dog in short bursts.
At times, even seeing the cat may be too much for the dog. If that’s the case, close the door and begin feeding the animals on either side of it as follows: The dog eats on the other side of the door from the cat, who eats in his room near the door. As a result, both animals learn to associate the scent of the other with something tasty: food. You can even switch out the animal’s blankets and bedding. Without being acclimated, this is how the dog and the cat will get used to each other’s smells.
As long as the dog is regularly exposed to the cat, it will eventually lose interest in it and stop bothering you. It could take days, weeks, or even months for a dog to lose interest in a cat, depending on the circumstances. Each dog (and each cat) is an individual who will learn at his or her own pace.
Your dog, on the other hand, may never be able to comfortably share a place with a feline companion. If you don’t trust him with your dog or cat, you should separate them. Several dogs can quickly injure or kill a cat, and the cat can injure your dog as well. Your primary concern should be to keep everyone safe.
If you don’t trust your dog around your cat, you should keep them separate.

Option 2: A Face-to-Face Meeting

This is a faster-paced start. One person should keep an eye on the dog’s body language while on a loose leash and respond appropriately. An observer from the outside should keep an eye on the feline. Allow the cat to move around freely only if he isn’t hissing or raising his back to the dog. Cats rarely pose a threat to dogs, but some will attack if they see one for the first time.
If your dog has been trained to sit or lie down and stay, you can ask them to do so as long as they remain calm around the cat. You should give the dog praise and treats if it ignores the cat. Option 1 or 3 should be used if the dog is too focused on the cat (e.g., staring at the cat, stiff body language, won’t come when you call her name) or lunges and tries to chase the cat.
The dog should be praised and rewarded if she ignores the cat.

Option 3: Take a look at this.

If the rapid introduction does not work and your dog is not acclimated to the cat, a more systematic approach may be required. Play Look at That to help your dog stop obsessing over the cat (LAT). If she turns around to look at you after looking at the cat, you’ll reward her with a treat. In other words, she’ll come to realize that ignoring the cat gives her more pleasure.
Determine the dog’s leash threshold as a first step in working on LAT: When will she notice the cat but still begin to call your name? She isn’t going to cross that line. Each dog has its own unique points. When it comes to a dog’s threshold distance from a cat, it could be anywhere from five to twenty-five feet. When she starts yelling or lunging at the cat, you’ve crossed the line. When the cat starts moving more slowly, looking around, and stiffening her body, you’ve gotten too close. If the cat doesn’t respond when you call her name, take a step back.
Once you’ve determined the dog’s threshold, you’ll need a clicker and some pea-sized treats. If you don’t have a clicker, you can use a vocal marker (a word like “yes” or “good”). Put ten candies in your palm and keep the bag aside for later.
When you see her staring at the cat, reward her and use your clicker or verbal signal. You may need to place the reward right in front of her nose the first few times, but once she hears the marker, she should start looking at you eagerly. This is why using a feature (such as a clicker or a phrase like “yes”) always indicates that a reward is on the way. Use up the remaining ten goodies whenever she stares at the cat by clicking whenever she does.
Before applying the mark, wait until she looks at the cat and then back at you for the eleventh time. Click or use the verbal marker as soon as she looks at you, and reward her with a sweet reward. Return to the beginning if it doesn’t happen. After that, go back and re-mark her ten times for staring at the cat. After she is consistently staring at it and then back at you, you can gradually get closer to the cat. If you approach the cat too closely, the dog will become fascinated by it; in this case, you should back away.
As your training progresses, it will be easier for you and the cat to become closer. Keep practicing LAT with your dog until she can sit next to the cat without having any issues. The rate at which your dog’s threshold drops is determined by how comfortable you, your dog, and your cat are.

Puppies And Kittens Are Here To Stay.

Keep in mind that kittens aren’t always afraid of dogs, so keep an eye on the dog as you introduce it to the new kitten. Because kittens are small and want to play, their movements may be too stimulating for dogs with a high hunting drive. Although your dog may get along with your older cats, you should keep an eye on her when she’s around a kitten. Your dog may injure or even kill the kitten simply by attempting to play with it, especially if she is young and active. Keep kittens and dogs apart when you’re not looking after them.
Adult cats who have been properly socialized may be able to accept a puppy behaving like a puppy. It’s up to you to step in and prevent your rambunctious dog from pursuing your fearful cat. You should keep an eye on their relationship until the puppy is old enough to have more self-control and has been trained. Chasing the cat should not be a fun time for your dog. Baby gates can be used to keep the animals separated. You can also keep an eye on your dog by using a leash. If she starts chasing after the cat, you’ll be able to quickly redirect her with this in place.