We recently picked out an adorable lab mix puppy from a nearby rescue shelter, he's too young to take home but we should be able to bring him home in a week or two. Since then (and even before we picked him out) I've been doing a ton of research on raising a puppy and I think I understand the majority of it, but I'm still concerned on how well the puppy will get along with my cats. The idea to get a dog was not mine, but my dads. He thinks that the puppy will have no problems getting along with the cats since it will be raised with them. Our vet also said that the cats and puppy should have no problem getting along. But most of what I'm reading online says the dog and cats should be under constant supervision. The main reason I am concerned is because the puppy is a lab mix and the 'mix' part is unknown (mom is a full bred chocolate lab). Most of the puppies are brown, and some of the puppies from this litter have white paws, chin, and chest. I'm worried that the mix may be pitbull (or other terrier) or boxer, only because from what I have read, neither of those two are good for a house with cats. Obviously he will be kept under constant supervision as a puppy, both to see how he interacts with the cats and to make sure he's not destroying anything. At night and if no one is home, he will be crated. My questions are:
Does he have to stay under constant supervision for his entire life because of the cats? Or will there ever be a time when they can be trusted together? Say if my cats are in the bedroom and the dog happens to wander up there? Or could he ever be allowed to sleep outside of his crate and be trusted not to hurt the cats at night?
This may be a stupid question, but does constant supervision also mean that if I'm showering, using the restroom, etc that I have to put the dog back in his crate or in a room away from the cats? Again this is after he can be trusted not to chew the house, not while he's a baby.
And about his mixed breed, are there any other breeds he could be mixed with that would cause some of the puppies in the litter to have a white chin/feet/chest?
Hope this all made sense.
Thanks for rescuing. The fact you got him as a puppy is helpful as if he can be socialized with the cats young, he will be less likely to see them as prey once older. Do as much socialization now as possible. However, until you can narrow down the mix, I would be cautious. If he does turn out to have strong prey drive once grown, then supervision will be all the time. Just takes a few seconds for something bad to happen. Training and socialization as much as possible early will help to minimize the risks later on.
White mixed in can be many different breeds. If he is a Pit mix, he will probably have the broader jaw and a thinner tail. Size will help to narrow things down once he is older...perhaps post a picture so others can chime in with guesses. My two rescues are Boradors...Border Collie/Lab. They have a very strong prey/chase/herd drive...so I wouldn't trust them with Cats. They are also small...32 and 37 lbs full grown.
This is Suki with her white chest
Last edited by MoldBuster; 01-18-2013 at 01:00 AM.
Suki and Quiggley. Border Collie X Black Lab (Borador).
Take One Lab. Cut size In Half. Add Border Collie for Boundless Energy and Even MORE Intelligence to Thwart Your Efforts. Mix Thoroughly. Enjoy!
Most pups raised with cats will have no problems with them...especially indoors. We have 4 dogs and 4 cats and aside from the occasional play chase, all is well but they will chase a cat outdoors. Initially I'd worry more about the pup than the cats. Smart cats set the rules right off and you don't want a scratched eye (although a scratch on the snout teaches quite a lesson). I'd keep an eye out in the beginning but wouldn't worry too much...and besides, I've known plenty of terriers and pit bulls that lived amicably in a house with cats.
I agree 100% As it turns out we ended up with two new pups in the last 18 months one just before and one just after we lost our 9 year old dog. We have a 12 year old cat and both of our puppies learned to respect him and his space quite quickly. Our chihuahua mix is much more of a cat terror than our lab is! And the cat is bigger than her! Our lab is actually a little afraid of the cat, he got a couple of hisses directed at him and he is pretty timid towards the cat now.
Has your cat been declawed ( a procedure I think is unspeakably cruel but I know it is legal in the US, unlike most other countries). If your cat has its front claws, it will scratch the puppy if he gets too close. After two scratches our puppy is now terrified of getting a swipe and usually ignores our cat completely. Yesterday they actually lay next to each other on the rug so some progress is being made!