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How To Introduce a New Puppy To an Old Cat?


How to introduce a new puppy to an old cat is a very essential topic, especially if you are going to have them under the same roof. Therefore, you need to know that there are instructions you need to follow, but also, understand that not all animals can follow the same guidelines, so you will need to try different things.

To introduce a new puppy to an old cat, you need to pay attention to a variety of factors: Maturity level, personality, previous experience with other dogs, and the interaction that happens between both of them. Also, you need to be patient and let the transition process go smooth.

How to safely introduce a new puppy to your old cat?

  • Place them in different rooms.
  • Make sure they are comfortable.
  • Don’t ignore any of your pets.
  • Help them get used to each other’s scent.
  • Let them meet each other face-to-face.
  • Give them the time they need.
  • Treat them for good behavior.
  • Use positive reinforcement.
  • Don’t ever use negative reinforcement.
introduce a new puppy

First off, place each of them in separate rooms so they can smell and hear each other, and know that there is another pet that is welcomed under the same roof, but don’t let them meet each other now.

During this time, make sure that both pets have all that they need: their toys, food, water,  litter box, and where they are going to sleep in those separate rooms.

Also, don’t change your attitude with them; make them feel loved like you used to do, and care about them, bring them treats they love, and make them feel comfortable and relaxed.

Now, try to place different T-shirt, toy, towel, or even a blanket in both rooms with the separated pets for some time, so it catches the scent of each pet, then switch whatever you chose between both of them. By doing this, you are helping a lot in the introducing phase by making both of them familiar with each other’s scent.

So far so good?

introduce a new puppy

Once you noticed that both pets are comfortable and relaxed with each other’s things that carry their scents, it is about time to give them an even bigger dose of the other pet’s scent, so switch rooms between both of your pets, but make sure that they don’t meet each other now.

You might find your pet little nervous at first when you change his/her room, which is normal, so give your pet time to make him/herself comfortable in the new room, and get used to the huge amount of the other pet’s scent in the room.

In this manner, both of your pets will be so ready to move to the next meeting phase. However, you need to take baby steps in that phase, too. We don’t want to start over again.

How to introduce a new puppy to an old cat face-to-face?

Choose a time your both pets are comfortable, happy, and playful, and put them in the same room. But, you need to make sure that each pet is in his/her own carrier; we don’t want them to touch each other, we just need them to see and smell each other.

The point from this move is that we need them to see that they can both feel safe, loved, and comfortable in the presence of the other pet. By doing that, we are helping them accept each other faster and easier.

Now, try to give them some room to move, but make sure that you have full control over both of them, just in case some of the pets decided to get aggressive then let them get to know each other more and feel free discovering each other.

Keep in mind that you need to reward your pet every time he/she stays calm when he/she meets the other pet. By doing that, your pet will understand that staying calm is something you like, and by repeating that, it will become a habit and that will help them like being calm around each other.

introduce a new puppy

In the same perspective, if you started using negative reinforcement with your pet to force him/her get along with the other pet, you are risking losing that connection forever, because your pet will connect getting hurt or upset with the presence of the other pet.

In most cases, these instructions will help you introduce a new puppy to an old cat without any of them gets hurt or uncomfortable. However, you need to understand that each pet has his/her own personality, and you need to accept the differences between pet’s characteristics.

Therefore, if you found your pet is not comfortable, yet, give him/her the time he/she needs, don’t force him/her doing things he/she is not ready for, yet.

Things to pay attention to before and after you introduce a new puppy to a cat:

The cat:

The first thing you need to do before you introduce a new puppy to an old cat is the cat’s history with dogs. What is the past experience she had with dogs? Does she run from them once she sees one? Does she attacks them?

You need to pay attention to your cat’s behavior before you bring her a puppy because you don’t want to hurt any of them. So, before you decide to get a new puppy, you need to spend some time observing your cat’s behavior around dogs.

In addition to that, you need to pay extra attention to your pets after introducing them to each other, because cats get annoyed and not interested fast.

introduce a new puppy

The puppy:

Usually, puppies find cats very interesting creatures, they will try to become their friends, play around, smell them, and sometimes annoy them. That will seem nice and cute until your cat starts getting annoyed and decides to make something about it.

Therefore, try to keep things under your control most of the time when you notice that they are being so playful and active, because, especially in the first four weeks, things can get out of control fast.

However, to limi the chances of this happening, you need to follow these three rules:

  • High supervision
  • No chasing
  • A place to hide/escape

These three golden rules can help you keep things under control and quite for a long time, and will also help you live in peace because let me tell you if you didn’t introduce a new puppy to an old cat properly, living in peace will be your only wish.

Also, before you go, check this video from the Jaw-dropping facts channel to learn more about your cat’s body language.

Related Questions:

How long does it take for a cat to get used to a puppy?

As we mentioned before, sometimes introducing a cat to a new puppy takes time, which is fine, you need to give your pets the time they need to get used to the new life they are going to have with the new friend that is going to share it with.

However, usually, a cat takes from two to three weeks to get along with a new puppy.

Will my cat hurt my puppy?

Introducing cats to puppies can sometimes be a hard thing to do based on the personality of both of them, and especially for cats. So, yes, things can get so complicated at first before it becomes better, hopefully, we don’t reach the hurting part, but sometimes cats chase dogs.

introduce a new puppy

Therefore, it is very important to pay extra attention to their attitude together and try to separate them if you are not around, at least in the introducing phase, because we don’t want any of them to hurt the other, that will be hard to forget which will make the getting along part even harder.

Can a cat and dog peacefully live together?

Yes, cats and dogs can peacefully live together if they were introduced well, and took the time they needed to get used to each other, and you helped them feel comfortable and safe around each other.

Now you know what you need to know to introduce a new puppy to an old cat, why don’t you tell us more about the first time you tried to introduce a new puppy to an old cat, and how it went?

Ghada Harhash

Whenever the time of talking about ANYTHING comes, I find myself talking about my two dogs Leo and Blacky. It is a struggle that every dog owner understands. So, if we are talking about success, my dogs succeded in learning new tricks, if we are talking about failure, my dogs failed to make me hate them, if we are talking about love, my dogs are the pure form of true love, last but not least, if we are talking about kids, guess what! I have two. So, yes, it is all about my dogs. Therefore, you will find me here today, and every day, talking about, with and for dogs. It is my favorite subject, and since you are here, I believe it is yours, too. But, if you are interested in reading about other topics such as relationships, travel tips and tricks, and more. You can check my twitter account @ghaadaah_ where you get to know me, and I get to know you better.

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