Non puppy Shikoku becoming friends with a cat
  • KibakazeKibakaze
    Posts: 13
    Someone on the FB page was asking how I got my 1yr old Shikoku to be good friends with a cat. If anyone else has introduced their older Shikoku to pets any tips would be appreciated. These steps are just what worked for me! :) When Kiba first met the cat he was lunging and actively trying to eat the cat and to be honest I didn't think my efforts were going to be successful.

    ** This process took roughly 3 months.

    1. Get a piece of fur and hold it in your arms like it might be a cat. Teach him to sniff the fur and NOT bite the fur. I used the word Gentle. I did this until he always sniffed it and no biting. If he bites the fur I reacted almost as strongly as if he had bitten the cat.
    2. When the 2 animals are in the same room keep the dog tied up on a short leash and use a flat collar. When the dog shows any calm behavior around the cat give him lots of rewards and praise. Kiba responds very well to praise and if he was a treat dog I would have given him food rewards too. If the dog lunges towards the cat be sure to correct him so he's knows that's not acceptable. ... this was the long phase and there were quite a few times I didnt think it was going to change.
    3. When they're in the same room I continued to alternate between giving the cat and dog attention and let the dog smell the cat on you.
    4. Once the dog is showing calm behavior like laying in a very relaxed position (not the pounce position), and is also calm when the cat walks past then you can move on to the introduction.
    5. Holding the cat, walk towards where the dog is tied and only go as close as you can with both being calm. The idea is to teach both animals to be calm around each other so they can sniff.
    6. For the first number of sniffs I would sit on the floor with the cat on my lap and move the end of the cat's tale over towards Kiba and say Gentle. I was in a sitting position to protect the cat's body! By this point he knew he wasnt allow to chase the cat but still would have liked to eat the cat if possible.
    7. Once the first tail fur smells have gone calmly, the dog should be relaxing around the cat. Just keep rewarding calm behavior and correcting any excited or aggressive postures towards the cat.

    Kiba is now in love with the cat. They play and snuggle each other and Kiba loves grooming his fur. Surprisingly Kiba acts the same towards the cat inside or outside the house but I would test that out before having them outside together.
    Hope that helps!
  • I used a similar process with my Akita mix but they both tool to each other readily.
    He still freaks out at strange cats though, I think there is a difference between 'his' cat and 'other' cats.
    image
    Post edited by Vulpesvulpes89 at 2016-03-07 19:31:44
  • TheYetiTheYeti
    Posts: 166
    Rollo was introduced to a cat more than once, it was the same cat who lives at my cousin's house.

    He is a very patient cat. Rollo didn't try to attack or eat him, but he wanted to play. He pestered that cat for at least an hour, got swatted at and bit on the neck after the cat had enough of his nonsense. We had to split them up. He would hit him with his paw, nibble on the cat and follow the cats every move. He was almost in a trance, he was fascinated by the 'small dog that wouldn't play with him'.
    To err is human, to arrr is to pirate.
  • PoetikDragonPoetikDragon
    Posts: 2802
    When I have done introductions I have never held/restrained the cat during any part of it. I always make sure the cat has multiple escape routes, either out of the room or up onto furniture however it prefers. My cats at least like to watch a "threat" from above for prolonged periods of time before getting down to its level. I generally don't think restraining the cat or forcing it to get close is the best idea, as it is more prone to panic, thrash, or lash out all of which are the exact opposite of "calm" desired in the original post. We let the cats approach on their own terms.
    「怪獣荘秋田犬」Kaiju Kennels Japanese Akita and Hokkaido, Claire Matthews
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  • TheYetiTheYeti
    Posts: 166
    This makes perfect sense. We made sure the cat was up out of reach from the puppy before letting Rollo loose. Lots of escape routes will help the cat not feel threatened. Just be ready to step in and separate them if the dog starts to get out of hand.
    To err is human, to arrr is to pirate.
    Post edited by TheYeti at 2016-03-08 00:54:06
  • HeidiHeidi
    Posts: 3379
    Rakka was a year old when I adopted her, so I had to introduce her to my cats. She had not previously lived with cats. It was really uneventful. Even though Rakka will chase strange cats, she is totally fine with cats in the home and pretty much always has been.
    Rakka 落下(Shikoku Ken), Sosuke 宗介 (Kai Ken), Hester, Stephanie, and Batgirl(cats)
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  • WhoBitMeWhoBitMe
    Posts: 1889
    This is actually something I am starting to go through now. Sunday we got a call from a microchip company that a cat of ours who went missing 5 years ago was found in a city about 20 minutes away. Meitou is way too excited by this, lol.
    1 Human + 1 Hokkaido
    RIP Amy (Border Collie)

    “Anyone can love a thing because. That's as easy as putting a penny in your pocket.
    But to love something despite. To know the flaws and love them too. That is rare and pure and perfect.”
    --Patrick Rothfuss, A Wise Man's Fear

    "Life before death. Strength before weakness. Journey before destination."
    --Brandon Sanderson, the First Ideal from The Stormlight Archive.
  • GrayJJGrayJJ
    Posts: 260
    Wow, I applaud those of you with success... Takeo is crazy high prey drive, laser-like focus on any living thing and getting along with cats was absolutely not an option. Once he outgrew them, it was no longer fair to the cats, who could attempt to fight Takeo but he only got more excited by the challenge.
  • CrispyCrispy
    Posts: 1732
    I expected TK to be postal about the cats, but he kind of accepted them without any fuss. Like it was no big thing. He actually really loved to play with my boyfriend's Siamese. They got along really well.

    My Kishu, on the other hand... eehhhhh... they'll never be okay with cats and one was even raised with my boyfriend's cats and my grandmother's cat. I quickly found out that doesn't transfer to all cats.
    Akiyama no Roushya || 秋山の狼室 || www.kishu-ken.org
  • HeidiHeidi
    Posts: 3379
    @WhoBitMe That's amazing that your cat was found after so long! Congratulations! Good luck with the introduction.
    Rakka 落下(Shikoku Ken), Sosuke 宗介 (Kai Ken), Hester, Stephanie, and Batgirl(cats)
    image
  • WhoBitMeWhoBitMe
    Posts: 1889
    @Heidi Thank you. We were all pretty surprised.

    It's going to be a long introduction period....because of Meitou. He gets on fine with our other cat most of the time, but his general attitude toward cats is "YAY! Cat! Must poke/chase/tackle/hump!" :| And Meitou has a hard time leaving exciting things alone. But my sister's two Chihuahuas have already met the cat and do fine with him in controlled settings. meitou will be fine eventually, but it will take a while to tame his enthusiasm, lol.
    1 Human + 1 Hokkaido
    RIP Amy (Border Collie)

    “Anyone can love a thing because. That's as easy as putting a penny in your pocket.
    But to love something despite. To know the flaws and love them too. That is rare and pure and perfect.”
    --Patrick Rothfuss, A Wise Man's Fear

    "Life before death. Strength before weakness. Journey before destination."
    --Brandon Sanderson, the First Ideal from The Stormlight Archive.
  • KibakazeKibakaze
    Posts: 13
    @PoetikDragon You're completely right. Holding the cat against it's will would certainly never work. When initially introducing the cat would walk through the room and then run full blast. Kiba would lunge viciously trying to go after him so it's important to tie the dog tight. The cat quickly learned that Kiba had a small area he could reach and then would tease the dog and eventually completely relaxed. I was very lucky and the cat was a purr monster and once relaxed a little was happy to sit in my lap getting snuggles. At first this made me even more afraid that Kiba would have an easy opportunity to eat him... thankfully it worked out. :)
  • KibakazeKibakaze
    Posts: 13
    @GrayJJ I would definitely describe Kiba has having a very high prey drive. Some people commented that their cat introductions went quickly but that was certainly not the case with Kiba. I kept persisting out of necessity because the person I was dating had a cat.

    When we were at his house I had to tie Kiba up or have him caged. I also kept preparing my BF for the day that the cat might walk to close to Kiba while tied inside the house. I was thrilled when something finally clicked and Kiba started to accept the cat. Now I think anything is possible! haha Perhaps one day Kiba will be an offleash dog. ;)
  • WhoBitMeWhoBitMe
    Posts: 1889
    Thought I would make an update about Meitou and the elderly cat that was returned to us after five years. As expected, Meitou was very enthusiastic about chasing the cat and the cat was not very enthusiastic about Meitou. Mostly we went months with them being separate. If Toby (the cat) was inside, Meitou was either out in the backyard or shut downstairs. Then when the cat went back to his safe place (which he decided was the garage), Meitou could come up and smell where the cat had been.

    There was one oops moment where somehow the two were upstairs together and Meitou chased the cat around which made the cat even more unhappy. It was an accident but I figured after that Meitou and Toby probably wouldn't ever be in the house together. And Toby was spending most of his time outdoors in the summer warmth and seemed happy enough.

    Over the summer Meitou became more desensitized to Toby and finally acted calm around him and seemed to accept him as part of the family and not some strange cat to chase and poke. Toby still didn't like being inside...

    But...

    Once the cold late fall/winter temperatures set in Toby has been coming inside of his own free will and walking around with Meitou and my sister's Chihuahua's like there has never been a problem. Sometimes he even sleeps near the Chihuahuas on the couch. Meitou pretty much ignores him except to occasionally give Toby a sniff. So now they're inside together all the time. Time and especially cold weather really helped. ;)
    1 Human + 1 Hokkaido
    RIP Amy (Border Collie)

    “Anyone can love a thing because. That's as easy as putting a penny in your pocket.
    But to love something despite. To know the flaws and love them too. That is rare and pure and perfect.”
    --Patrick Rothfuss, A Wise Man's Fear

    "Life before death. Strength before weakness. Journey before destination."
    --Brandon Sanderson, the First Ideal from The Stormlight Archive.
  • That's a great outcome! I love this story! (*)
    photo Picture 3_zps4y5sotml.png Kai to the Core!

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