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It’s usually a good idea to adopt another pet as a companion for your dog so they can play together and keep each other company. However, having two pets can be complicated if the companion you choose for your dog is from another species, for example, a kitten.
Dogs and cats have always had a history of being enemies, and this is largely attributed to how the media portrays them. Even though most of that portrayal isn’t true, many pet parents wonder whether their dog will actually eat a kitten.
So, will your dog eat your kitten? Your dog will not eat your kitten. However, your dog might chase the kitten around or harm it some other way. Dogs will not always harm kittens on purpose, as the dog might just be playing and got too rough with the kitten. The kitten might also do something that provokes the dog to attack it.
Keep on reading to learn more about why a dog might eat your kitten and how to prevent this from happening.
Will Your Dog Eat Your Kitten?
Dogs are capable of hurting a kitten and even killing it, but it’s very unlikely that they would eat a kitten.
If the dog is unfamiliar with the cat, meaning that it’s a street cat that the dog came across, it’s likely to perceive the cat as a threat and might try to attack or hurt it.
If the dog is familiar with the cat and they live together, on the other, it might hurt the cat by accident by playing it with it too roughly.
Violence between dogs and cats is generally more common with strays because they are not trained to behave properly and are more likely to become violent over food or territory.
Why Do Dogs Like to Chase Kittens?
Dogs and cats are always portrayed as enemies in the media, and this portrayal might hold some truth in real life as dogs actually like to chase cats around.
But why do dogs behave that way around kittens?
The main reason is that it is part of their natural instincts to chase after animals that are smaller than them. This includes squirrels, rodents, and certainly, kittens.
This is especially common with dogs that were bred for hunting as they could perceive the cat as prey that they need to hunt.
Another reason is that the dog is simply trying to play with its animal friend, and chasing the cat around is considered fun. However, this kind of play might get too out of hand, and the cat might get hurt.
How Can You Prevent Your Dog From Hurting Kittens?
As a responsible pet owner, it’s important to take precautions to prevent your dog from hurting any kitten, whether it’s a pet kitten or a stray kitten.
The best way to do that is to keep both animals separate from each other as much as possible. When taking the dog out on a walk, it’s also best to monitor it and keep it on a leash all the time.
Socializing your dog will also help it get used to being around cats without feeling threatened or scared.
Training Techniques To Prevent Your Dog From Harming Your Kitten
Here are some training techniques that can help your dog and kitten coexist peacefully:
Prepare Them for the First Meeting
It’s a cliche, but dogs only have one chance to make a first impression. So if you bring in a new pet home, you should carefully arrange the initial meeting.
For instance, if you adopt a cat and also have a dog, you should keep the dog in a cage or in another room until your cat adjusts to its new environment.
There’s a lot to adapt to in those initial periods, so give the cat time before introducing another animal.
After a few days, you could let your cat and dog smell each other through the door, and eventually, you can let them meet in person.
The Official Introduction
The first time you introduce the dog and cat in person, you need to make sure that they’re in a calm, familiar environment. Also, make sure to monitor their behavior for any tension or sign of aggression.
If your dog is crate trained, it might be a good idea to put him in the crate at first while letting the cat roam the room. You can also keep the dog on a leash until you’re certain that it won’t harm the cat.
Create a Safe Zone
Provide a high platform for your cat to stand on as your cat’s initial instinct when meeting the dog might be to go up to safety.
The cat may then jump onto a shelf and observe your dog from above. If your cat believes they have control over their safety, they will be more inclined to trust the dog with time.
Practice Basic Commands
Make sure your dog obeys simple commands such as “Sit,” “Stay,” and “Leave it” so you can control its behavior around the cat.
Offer Treats to Create a Positive Association.
Offering encouragement and treats to your dog when it’s introduced to the act might help him associate the kitten with positive feelings.
If your dog reacts well to basic commands and treats, provide a treat anytime your cat is around. It will help your dog concentrate on you instead of their new companion.
How to Tell If Your Dog Will Hurt a Kitten?
You can tell if your dog will hurt a kitten by looking out for signs of aggression toward the kitten, such as barking or growling at it and chasing it around. The dog’s posture will also be stiff around the cat as it will raise its tail and flatten its ears.
Why Do Dogs Chase Cats?
Dogs chase cats because it’s an instinct, especially if the dog is from a hunting or herding breed. The dog might also chase cats because they want to play, and they would chase the cat in the same way that they would chase a ball thrown at them.
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