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Sally G.
Sally G., Animal Behaviorist
Category: Dog Training
Satisfied Customers: 9408
Experience:  Service /assistance dog trainer,Therapy dog evaluator and trainer, AKC evaluator, pet first aide and member of PAS Animal Response Team.
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We have a 3 year old cat. We just brought home a rescue 40

Customer Question

We have a 3 year old cat. We just brought home a rescue 40 pound dog who is well behaved and smart but wants to attack our cat. Our cat is indoor/outdoor and I'm afraid we'll lose him. What should I do?
Submitted: 8 months ago.
Category: Dog Training
Expert:  Sally G. replied 8 months ago.

Hello and welcome. This is just a short note to introduce myself or to request needed information for your problem. My name is ***** ***** I have been in the dog field for 25 years. I am a Therapy Dog & AKC Evaluator/trainer/ as well as an assistance/service dog trainer, specializing in behavior. It will be my pleasure to help you today. It may take a few minutes for me to type a personal response or type questions regarding your situation. Your patience is very much appreciated.

When you say attack the cat what is the dog actually doing?

Have you shown the dog an acceptable behavior that will earn him a reward around the cat? If so what behavior have you asked for?

What commands does the dog know?

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
The dog doesn't actually attack the cat. The one time they met unattended, the dog was standing with her back to the door and the cat was 6 '' away facing her with big tail and arched back. We grab her collar and back her off- no reward. She is very obedient and if running for the cat will turn around and come to us when we call her.
Expert:  Sally G. replied 8 months ago.

It sounds like you have a very obedient dog which is great! What you will want to do is proper introduction to the cat. Right now the dog is seeing the cat almost as prey not as a part of the family so what I would do is successful introductions inside the home to start where the dog is getting rewarded for sitting next to you while the cat moves about. This is called learned behavior or a default behavior so that when the dog sees the cat, it immediately goes to your side.

You can use a cue for that such as 'side' and treat the dog something that is tasty and that the dog will only get at this time. Human food works well like chicken slivers or hot dog slivers.

Eventually I do think the dog and cat will be fine once they realize they have to live together. Right now everything in you house routine is new to the dog.

Expert:  Sally G. replied 8 months ago.
Hi Barbara,

I'm just following up on our conversation about Lily. How is everything going?

Sally G.

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