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Socialising dogs & cats.

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wvaleriechas | 23:31 Sat 18th Feb 2006 | Animals & Nature
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I have a 4yr old rescued cat which has taken me 3 yrs to domesticate although he is not the easiest cat to handle & can attack others. I have taken in my sons 6yr old springer spaniel bitch following the breakdown of his marriage & having to work away. She has a lovely nature, obedient , happy & active but the cat has resorted to living upstairs or in my greenhouse. I worry about him in this cold weather & hope there is someone out there with some advice to offer as how to get the cat to accept the dog. I really want this to work out as I could not possibly bring myself to rehome either of them. My home is a small cottage with a very large garden & it would be great if they could live in harmony. Icidentally, I have kept Springers in the past who lived happily with other cats (now passed on). Please,please, any advice at all would be tried out without exception. Many thanks. Mother Hubbard.


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You have a difficult situation here, as you have a cat that you have nurtured now feeling put out by the arrival of a dog. Luckily the dog is docile, so you will need to just get them together, as your cat is probably quite afraid of your dog, which is quite natural. Try feeding them at the same time, and letting your cat especially, know that the dog is friendly! Bring the cat in to the house as much as possible, and even spend some time with toys where they are both involved. When the weather improves in the spring, you are fortunate in having a large garden, perhaps a little hut that they can both shelter in? Best of luck!
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Thankyou Dkeyes for your advice, rest assured that I will try it. Feeding them in the same room at the moment is not possible as the cat just bolts the minute he sees the dog but gently does it & I will try to do what you suggest. I have a brick built outhouse close to the back door which I have put bedding in & a large catflap so at least the cat has a bolt hole. There is also a catflap in the house door that the dog cannot get through so yet another escape route. Someone suggested some step ladders so the cat could watch the dog from a height & might encourage him to be a bit braver so I will try that too. The summer should not be a problem as there are trees to climb for the cat & he spends a lot of time outdoors then but it seems so far away at the moment. I suppose I am trying to walk before I can run & that time will be of the essence. Many thanks for taking the time to reply, it is greatly appreciated...........mother hubbard

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