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Greyhounds With Cats Indoor Vs Outdoor

Guest KK_The_Grey

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Guest KK_The_Grey

Hi gang!


I am getting my girl, Queenie in a couple of weeks (I'm a greyhound newbie) and I have a cat-related question.


When Queenie was retired, she was tested cat-safe. When our adoption group brought her to Canada, they have tested her again and she was, once again, deemed cat-safe. Our foster tells us that, when they are on walks, she is quite interested in cats and squirrels and wants to chase them.


I know that even greyhounds who live with cats indoors, can hunt down a cat once they are outside - it's a different world and different rules.


We have two cats but they are indoor-only. We live in an apartment, so there is no way for them to go anywhere anyway.


I was wondering if anyone has had a similar experience? Does any one have a greyhound who is interested in chasing cats outside but lives peacefully with them in the house?






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Guest Greyt_dog_lover

I have multiple hounds that fit that bill. In fact my boy Bart is a certified cat zapper. He dispatched a stray cat that wandered into his yard when he was in foster. He lived with my two cats for nearly 5 years without a single incident. I would have no worries about adopting a hound that wants to chase cats outside. As long as your cats do not go outside, they will be fine. Understand though you will still have to acclimate the hound to your individual cats. Each cat has different mannerisms, so just because he ignored the cat in the test does not mean he will totally ignore your cat. I have been a cat tester for multiple groups and had 2 cats with nearly 15 different fosters and my 3 hounds so there are many hounds out there that can live with cats. Below is my routine for introducing your greyhound to cats:


Ok, I cut-and-pasted from a previous thread. I have been a cat tester for multiple groups as well as I foster greyhounds with my cats. Here is my method for the first few months I have new hounds in my house:

First week:

1) Muzzle does not come off the hound unless the cats are behind closed door, or hound is in crate, PERIOD.

2) Cats will be put behind closed doors for more than half of the day the hound is awake and I am home.

3) When the cats are around, the hound will have a leash attached (as well as muzzle, see above).

4) to work on desensitization, get some good small bites of food, such as cheese. Have significant other/friend help with the next few steps

5) One person has hound with muzzle and leash on one side of room, second person gets cat and walks into room holding cat. Person with cat sits on floor on opposite side of room and allows the hound to see the cat. Person holding hound calls his/her name, once the hound looks, give treat. REPEAT for 5-10 minutes. DO NOT allow cat to move or otherwise stir and make noise. If the cat gets upset, remove the cat, do not allow the cat to run or make noise as this may excite the hound.

6) do this multiple times during the day. After each session, the cat should be placed in a room, do not allow interaction.

Second week:

1) Muzzle does not come off the hound unless the cats are behind closed door, or hound is in crate, PERIOD.

2) Again, two people. One brings cat into room, one holds the hound with muzzle and leash. Person with cat should sit much closer to hound. The hound can be allowed to approach the cat and sniff. All the while the person holding the hound should call his/her name and treat when the hound looks away from the cat. If the hound does not look away from the cat, the person holding the hound on the leash should move away from the cat and get the hounds attention, if needed show the treat to the hound to break the hounds' attention.

3) REPEAT for 5-10 minutes multiple times during the day.

4) After each session the cat should be placed in a room, do not allow interaction.

Third week:

1) Muzzle does not come off the hound unless the cats are behind closed door, or hound is in crate, PERIOD (see the trend?).

2) Again, two people. The hound still has muzzle and leash. By this time the hound should be nearly 100% reliable in looking away from the cat for a treat. If not, repeat second week until you have 100% reliability.

3) Second person brings cat into room, sets the cat down and allows the cat to move around the room. The person with the hound should be ready for the hound to try to move, do NOT allow the hound to follow or approach the cat when it is moving around. Instead call the hounds name and treat. If during this week the cat takes off or the hound starts to get anxious (barking, panting, drooling, excessive pulling) you need to go back a week.

4) If you can now distract the hound while the cat is moving around the room, good. Keep this training up for a week.

Fourth week:

1) Muzzle does not come off the hound unless the cats are behind closed door, or hound is in crate, PERIOD.

2) Two people, same drill (muzzle and leash).

3) Now you want to get the cat riled up when you have the cat and hound in the room together. If the cat is calm, then push the cat to run out of the room or otherwise get the kitty to make noise. Hold the leash and repeat treating when the hound looks at you. If you cannot get the hounds attention, go back a few weeks in the training.

4) Repeat daily.

Once you can have the cat in the room running around and making noise and be able to get the hound to look at you for treats, THEN you can allow the cat to have free run of the house. At this time, put up the baby gates at strategic places around the home (such as hallways and maybe doorways) about 6" above the ground. This will allow for the cats to move freely, but the hound cannot follow. Also as others have said, pull away the furniture from the walls to allow the cats to slide behind. At this time I may allow the cats and dogs to be able to move around at night, but have to see both how calm the cats are around the hound and vise versa. Before this I do not allow the cats and dogs to be able to be in the same room at night when I sleep, period.

This method of desensitization is much more effective at getting hounds and cats to live together as it reinforces the behavior you want, as opposed to correcting the behavior you don't want. For correction to work, you have to be present.

Do not allow your cats and dogs to co-mingle while you are gone for at least the first 3-6 months, you never know what can happen when you are gone. The muzzle does not guarantee that your cat will not be harmed. A greyhound can still kill small animals with a muzzle on.


Do NOT allow your hound to be loose with the cat in the house when the hound is not under your direct control (ie leash) for at least the first 3 weeks of my regiment. Secondly, a baby gate is not enough separation when you are gone. You need to close the door where the cat is when you leave, or crate the hound, either or, nothing less.

I don't believe there is an "excessive" training protocol when it comes to greyhounds and cats. There was an article that was floating around there years ago titled "Trust, the deadly disease". In an instant your hound can do something you would never expect and that could result in a very bad situation. The first few weeks the hound is in your house he/she will probably be shell-shocked and very subdued. After a few weeks of learning the ropes, their personality starts to come out and this is when interest in the cats can peak. I don't like the correction method of training (leash tug and firm "no"), this type of training has been proven to be less effective than positive reinforcement as well as it is a much calmer way of training.


Edited by Greyt_dog_lover
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All of our greyhounds--and we currently have just one, she's our fifth--have shown interest in outside cats. We have always had indoor cats, and all five of the dogs were fine with them, mostly ignoring them. They have always been far more interested in the cat food--or what comes out of the cat--than in the actual cat. :lol

Edited by rascalsmom

Phoebe (Belle's Sweetpea) adopted 9/2/13.

Jack (BTR Captain Jack) 9/28/05--11/2/12
Always missing Buddy, Ruby, and Rascal.

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Guest KK_The_Grey

Thanks guys!


That puts me at ease. I will use the positive reinforcement protocol with the cats and, hopefully, everything will go without a hitch.


Luckily, we can separate them easily when not home.



Thanks again :)

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Yes. I have indoor two cats and my hound Sweep is fine with them; they mostly ignore each other. However, Sweep is curious about outdoor cats and other critters. She also gave me a terrible scare a couple of months ago when my cat Olive darted out the back door as Sweep and I were coming in from the backyard. Sweep chased Olive for a couple of minutes, though she did not catch her or try to hurt her. In retrospect I think she just wanted to play, but it was still terrifying for Olive and me both. As soon as they were both back inside and everyone had a couple of hours to calm down, their interactions were totally normal again. For the entire first year I kept them separated when we were not home, but now they are all left loose and I don't worry about it. They all just sleep! My older cat Henry wouldn't take any crap from Sweep anyway, and that certainly helped with the cat training: if you have confident cats they will establish the rules and boundaries pretty quickly!


Rachel with littermates Doolin and Willa, feline rivals Tootie and Richard, and squatter cats Crumpet and Fezziwig.
Always missing gentlemen kitties Mud and Henry, and our beautiful, feisty, silly

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Inside cats = part of the family


Outside cats/squirrels/rabbits/birds = something to chase


Greyhounds can definitely catch just about anything that comes into the yard. One of mine even snatched a bird out of the air! :rolleyes: But if yours are not off leash, it will be less of a problem. Re-direct, praise, and treat if you see your dog becoming interested in an outdoor animal.

Chris - Mom to: Felicity (DeLand), and Andi (Braska Pandora)

52592535884_69debcd9b4.jpgsiggy by Chris Harper, on Flickr

Angels: Libby (Everlast), Dorie (Dog Gone Holly), Dude (TNJ VooDoo), Copper (Kid's Copper), Cash (GSI Payncash), Toni (LPH Cry Baby), Whiskey (KT's Phys Ed), Atom, Lilly

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Every one of my hounds has been OK with indoor cats, some more so than others. I wouldn't leave Riley or Sarge alone with a cat but they are fine with supervision.


Every one of my hounds has expressed a desire to kill outdoor cats, even the ones that would let an indoor cat tap dance on their heads. In one case a friend had an indoor/outdoor cat. Argus was fine with the cat inside, even a little afraid of him. When we met the same cat outside one day Argus tried to eat him.


It seems to be a totally different set of rules outside.

Edited by GreytNut

Kristen with

Penguin (L the Penguin) Flying Penske x L Alysana

Costarring The Fabulous Felines: Squeak, Merlin, Bailey & Mystic


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We've had many cat friendly Greyhounds with multiple indoor only cats. All have been fine together with careful safety training.

Good to provide multiple "cat only" safety zones in which cats can retreat -- far out of very tall Greyhounds' reach.

Baby-gates raised about 5" above floor level can be helpful to ensure cats have an easy escape route out of family living areas.

Also, we have a gated cat relaxation room where cats come/go freely, but dogs don't go unsupervised.

Keep litter boxes and cat food bowls far out of reach from inquisitive Greyhounds' needle noses.


Yes, outside cats (or other critters) = "game on" even for cat-friendly Greyhounds.

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Guest Wasserbuffel

Back in November I fostered a dog returned to another adoption program for being a cat killer. No other foster homes were available, and despite my having two cats I agreed to take him on. He had the scars from his life-saving surgery to prove he tangled with the cat.


I had him a week without him reacting once to either cat. Found out once the paperwork was forwarded to me that it was the outdoor cat he killed. Sweet as pie with the indoor kitties. He had a little trouble transitioning to his adoptive home, because that cat was more prone to bolting than mine, but after they got used to each other things settled nicely.

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Guest KK_The_Grey

Thank you everyone!


I think we will be fine then. Our cats are apartment pets and don't go out. We're planning on having them separated at all times when we can't supervise, so it should be ok.


Thanks again :)

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I always tethered my grey (leash around my waist) unless the cats were locked away safely. That way if the dog showed too much interest, a small tug on the leash and a voice of God "no kitty" worked. In the end, I have pictures of the cats and greys sleeping together on the couch. Outside, however, all bets were off.

Mary in Houston

Everyone has a photographic memory, but not everyone has film.


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My grey, Queen slept on the same bed with me and Button, our youngest cat. The other 2 cats would get a polite sniff BUT outdoor cats, she was off. Now my indoor cats HATE the outdoor cats that are on the other side of the windows or sliding glass doors, so Queen was their hero.


Conrad our current grey still sleeps in his crate, but the cats greet in the usual manner, and when he is in his bed they will come up and sniff him. Outdoor cats, I don't know if he wants to chase or just greet BUT the outdoor cats seem to be real scarce as he does start the morning outside with a nice ROO

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