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Getting the existing dog to accept the new kitten!

1816 Views 3 Replies 4 Participants Last post by  kittyluv
My fiancé has a 3.5 year old Shih Tzu (named Bella) and we recently just adopted a domestic short hair kitten (named Nova). We are having a major problem getting the two of them to play nice. We first tried to introduce them by my fiancé holding Bella and myself holding Nova and standing at either end of the hallways. Nova couldn’t care less, he is purring, rubbing up against me and licking me. Bella on the other hand is trying to escape to get to the cat, making weird noises (almost like yelping) and barking. We tried this for a few days and there was no improvement, so we brought them closer together and Bella actually tried to bite Nova’s ear (closest extremity). After that happened we didn’t bring them together that close, but we kept up on the across the hall bit and gave each other them the other ones toys and blankets. After a while (week) of little to no progress, we decided to put Nova in his carrier and let Bella roam around him freely. She was focused on Nova, no matter what treats were shown to her and no matter who called her. She would play bow in front of the cage, run around the cage, and make grunting noises (the kind she makes when she wants something). But after a little while of this she would actually try biting the cage, and that’s when we would put Nova away in his room. So here we are with a cat that lives in the guest bathroom, and I have no idea what to do. I really want to just let them loose and see what happens. Maybe if Nova swipes at Bella a time or two she’ll get the picture. I’m open to and would greatly appreciate ANY ideas. Thanks so much!
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Generally when I bring fosters home (or now in my adopteds) I exercise the crap out of my younger dogs. Spyro is 12...he doesn't move or care much about anything. Luna sounds like your Bella. I have to get Luna to Spyro's level or she will assume that the kitten is a brand new toy. So walk. Walk till Bella is so tired that she doesn't want to walk anymore. Then walk a little more. When Luna plops on the floor (not full on collapse) I know she is ready.

There are two things you should consider. Does she see you as alpha? If not she could just be extremely upset that you let this new "puppy" into her territory. The other thing to consider is that some dogs just won't do well with cats. Tzus don't have a massively high prey drive usually so I'm seeing that as unlikely. Tzus do have a little attitude though (which is why I miss mine) which, in that case, shed have to get over it. I don't know your dog though.
try putting the cat, in one room and shutting the door and letting the dog smell her from the other side of the door, this will take time but slowly start letting them be closer and closer together .
^Exactly. It will take time for them to get along well just be patient, and it will be very rewarding when the time comes that they eventually become good buddies. :)
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