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Cat Vs Dog Nightmare


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I guess I will start with a little background before the story.

 

Aidan (my grey) and Brewski (cat) have always gotten along well. They don't love each other but are always happy ignoring the other and just doing their own thing. Aidan came to us as "cat friendly". I might be over reacting but the whole event left me shaken and uneasy. :sad1:sad1

 

After Brewski uses his litter box he sometimes likes to run around the house with what we call his "poo crazys". Aidan often will chase him into a room but he had never done anything and I think Brewski thinks its a game. He normally just likes to run up to him and thats it. They both have free reign of the house while were at work and I've never had ANY problems with either one of them but this time was different. This time when Aidan chased him I heard Brewski cry and came in to find he had got him in the neck hard enough to rip his collar off. Brewski was hiding in the corner hissing. (he normally never hides or hisses at the dog).

 

I know I'm going to get the "im a bad parent" responses for having them together unmuzzled but they had always been fine before this event. I guess I'm just a bit shaken and posting about it makes me feel a little better. Has anyone else who has cats have any experience on this topic? Will this change the way they interact from now on? They currently seem ok, going about their normal business.

 

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I'm so sorry this happened, and I know how shaken you must be. I hope Brewski is okay. Do you think he might have crashed into Aidan? (My Henry gets the poo crazies too, I know exactly what you're talking about.) Or maybe did something else that accidentally provoked him?

 

I remember you replied when I posted about my experience with Sweep and Olive the cat in the yard (Brewski's name stuck with me). Of course indoors and outdoors are different, but my two were totally back to normal within a couple of hours of the incident and (knock on wood) we've had no further issues. Can Aidan be crated or baby-gated if need be? With the holiday weekend coming up, will you be around to monitor them?

 

I certainly don't think anyone will call you a bad parent! From what I can tell, many (if not most) of us here with cats and dogs leave them loose and unmuzzled, even when we're not home. It's a risk we choose to take, and sometimes things happen unfortunately (as they can between two cats, two dogs, etc.). I hope you are enjoying some chocolate or an adult beverage to settle your nerves.

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Rachel with feline rivals Tootie and Richard and squatter cats Crumpet and Fezziwig.
Always missing gentlemen kitties Mud and Henry, and our beautiful, strong, silly
 Sweep:heart

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Anytime you leave two species together unmonitored there's the risk of "something" happening. That being said, many of us do it routinely, and most don't ever have any issues. It probably only happened because the cat was running around and not paying enough attention to the dog's reaction and/or attitude. The dog had a normal reaction to a running prey animal. If he got that close, and the cat is still alive, Brewski was most likely playing. If he'd wanted to hurt the cat, he would have.

 

If they continue to have issues from this, you should make sure you keep them securely separated if you leave the house. The probably will be fine, until the next time the cat gets the poo crazies!

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

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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

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I'm so sorry this happened, and I know how shaken you must be. I hope Brewski is okay. Do you think he might have crashed into Aidan? (My Henry gets the poo crazies too, I know exactly what you're talking about.) Or maybe did something else that accidentally provoked him?

 

I remember you replied when I posted about my experience with Sweep and Olive the cat in the yard (Brewski's name stuck with me). Of course indoors and outdoors are different, but my two were totally back to normal within a couple of hours of the incident and (knock on wood) we've had no further issues. Can Aidan be crated or baby-gated if need be? With the holiday weekend coming up, will you be around to monitor them?

 

I certainly don't think anyone will call you a bad parent! From what I can tell, many (if not most) of us here with cats and dogs leave them loose and unmuzzled, even when we're not home. It's a risk we choose to take, and sometimes things happen unfortunately (as they can between two cats, two dogs, etc.). I hope you are enjoying some chocolate or an adult beverage to settle your nerves.

I actually thought of you when this happened! Thank you for the thought for reply as well as the one from greysmom. I think I just needed to vent my feelings about it and after a good nights rest last night I feel much better about it this morning! I know we all love our greys on here but Brewski was my first pet and holds a special place in my heart.

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Guest Greyt_dog_lover

How long have you had Aidan? and a follow up if you have had him for less than a year, how did you introduce them and how long before you left them alone together? How long has this chasing been going on?

Edited by Greyt_dog_lover
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The greyhound has been hardwired/bred for 5000 years/to chase and kill 'prey'. The hound probably does not even realize what is happening. When the cat did his poop dance/ran that set off the hounds prey drive. You can reduce prey drive in a dog by abusing them and mishandling them-and even to a certain extent if you know how to "handle" them- but you cannot ever get rid of it. You are lucky it didn't turn out worse. IMO it is not fair to the hound to expect him to somehow be able to control drives that have genetically been bred into him. The reason some greyhounds get along so well with cats and small animals is because some greyhounds have little if any prey drive. Believe it or not there are some dogs that would not find the cats little poop dance the least bit stimulating. Your hound is not one of them. That is nothing against him. Actually drive is usually encouraged and prized in many dogs because it enables them to do things that dogs that don't have it just can't. If it was me I would set them both up for success by making sure that the cat never had the opportunity to put the dog in drive. You've already seen what could happen.

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You're not a bad parent. It happens sometimes, even with the most "cat-oblivious" greyhounds. The switch flips, and the dog gets carried away. FWIW, there are two positive things about the situation. One being, (it sounds like) Aidan immediately let go and backed off. A lot of high prey dogs will go "into the zone" and absolutely will not let go until the prey is fatally injured or dead. The second good thing, your cat fought back. It's much easier to continue cat training when the cat is feisty (i.e. not spooky, not running away, and not generally acting like prey). I would muzzle and separate to maintain safety, but continue working with him. If they've already lived together harmoniously for a decent amount of time, there's no reason why you can't get back to that.

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I am so sorry this happened and I do not consider you a bad mom.

 

Another thing to consider is if Brewski runs the same poo route, placing a baby gate in the doorway of that room about 6 inches from the ground so that Brewski has a safe place to get to. I would also consider muzzling Aidan when no one is home.

 

If Aidan was in high prey drive things would have been much worse. When Miss India was alive I restricted Brady with raised Baby gates so she could visit when she wanted and leave when she wanted. Brady was confined to kitchen in my home.

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The handsome boy Brady, mid-morning nap. The sun, the sun feels so, so, so good.

I can't keep my eyes open ... ... Retirement agrees ...

... and the Diva Ms India, 2001 - 10/16/2009 ....

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How well our cat and greyhound get along is directly proportional to how well I keep the cat's nails trimmed! He has those super-pointy needle claws on his front paws, and they hurt! He'll sometimes bat Shane on the leg as Shane passes or on the face when he's lying down. If Shane really doesn't like it, he'll bark once, and the cat backs up fast! (It has only happened twice.) The cat just wants to play, but now he realizes that there may be consequences, so he's more circumspect. I'm betting your cat will be too! At least I hope so.

Mary with Jumper Jack (2/17/11) and angels Shane (PA's Busta Rime, 12/10/02 - 10/14/16) and Spencer (Dutch Laser, 11/25/00 - 3/29/13).

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This can happen any time, even after animals have been living together for years. It's always best to provide a separate safe space so cats can feel comfortable being cats. Greyhounds should not be allowed to chase cats; otherwise, prey drive and/or dangerous play can escalate too easily. Even muzzled Greyhounds can harm or kill a cat by pouncing on them during a chase (or biting through a muzzle).

 

As mentioned above, a secure baby-gate installed 5" or 6" above floor level helps provide a safe escape route for a cat. Cat's food, water, litterbox, primary resting bed, and cat zoomie area should be separate from the dog's main living spaces. Even when supervised, cats should have multiple safe escape spaces, in addition to a baby-gate, helps to pull a sofa or other large furniture several inches away from walls to provide extra protective spaces for cats, possibly an open closet with very high shelves, etc.. Greyhounds are faster than cats and humans.

 

I'm so glad your cat survived. Remain watchful of Brewski to ensure his little neck wasn't harmed. Thank you for posting, it could help others too. I'll be interested in reading your response to Greyt_dog_lover's questions too.

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How long have you had Aidan? and a follow up if you have had him for less than a year, how did you introduce them and how long before you left them alone together? How long has this chasing been going on?

 

We have had him for a year in April. When we first got him we went through the typically full separation at first then added baby gates while supervised and muzzled, then slowly took away more of the gates to give Aidan more free space, then only a baby gate by the door and no muzzle. I believe they were alone together by the end of the first month. He has always been interested in "watching" Brewski run around but normally never seems interested to get off his bed.

 

I've pulled out another baby gate and did as other posters suggested and am placing it at the door to his room which has his littler box, cat tree, water, etc. I should of never took it down I just assumed everything was going well. Since the incident everyone has been running like normal and their has been peace and I hope it continues.

 

Thank you again to everyone who has offered advise, this is a amazing community and the poster support is unmatched.

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This is the gate I have:

 

http://www.amazon.com/Carlson-0941PW-Extra-Tall-Walk-Thru-White/dp/B000JJFNJK/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1432815554&sr=8-1&keywords=walk+through+gate+with+cat+door

 

Easy install, cat door at the bottom, walk through to clean the litter box and feed the cat in the cat room!

 

Neither of my greyhounds has ever shown any interest in chasing my cats, so in your case I think you need to keep the gate up a while longer or possibly all the time.


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Susan,  Hamish,  Mister Bigglesworth and Nikita Stanislav. Missing Ming, George, and Buck

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Guest CleverJason

I would strongly discourage your grey from ever chasing the cat, as grey's can't easily distinguish the difference between "play chase" and "prey chase," with small animals, and it can turn suddenly. That's coming from someone who unfortunately learned that lesson the hard way.

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I am honestly surprised that some people are being so nonchalant about this or even chalking it up to playing. Any time you have a predator chasing a prey animal you have a dangerous and potentially deadly situation. It doesn't make me feel better that he didn't actually kill your cat in this instance - it's possible your cat gave him a good enough smack on the nose that he dropped him, or your cat was just quick enough that Aidan was only successful grabbing the cat's collar and not his neck. You may not be so lucky next time. (Even if it were play, it's clearly not play to the cat, who was very stressed out so it needs to stop).

 

I don't mean to scare the crap out of you, it sounds like the situation is completely workable, but you need to take precautions. I would keep them separated when you're not there to supervise (meaning when you leave the house Aidan does not have access to the space where the cat is or Aidan is confined in some way). When you are home, I would be proactive about re-training Aidan not to chase the cat. Since this seems to occur around post-poo zoomies I presume that much of the time you can anticipate the behavior because you can hear or see the cat go into the litterbox. When you do, get some high value treats and locate yourself next to Aidan. You may initially need to snap his leash on if you can't rely on vocal cues to keep him where he is or if you've taught him a very solid stay or wait cue, you can give him that cue. Then your next step is to reward him heavily for remaining where he is the entire time the cat does his zoomies. Over time, you'll space out the reward farther than farther apart so that he must remain where he is longer without food present, but you'll still reward him heavily for staying put once the cat is done.

 

Only when you are confident that he will stay put and not give chase even without you nearby would I even consider leaving them together unattended and even then, I would at the very least install baby gates into a room or two that have cat doors in them so Brewski has places to escape to if Aidan "forgets" his training and does give chase.

Edited by NeylasMom

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Jen, CPDT-KA with Zuri, lab in a greyhound suit, Violet, formerly known as Faith, Skye, the permanent puppy, Cisco, resident cat, and my baby girl Neyla, forever in my heart

"The great thing about science is that you're free to disagree with it, but you'll be wrong."

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Guest ParamagicFF

We have a very spunky cat who has never been a fan of other cats or smaller dogs, but tends to be curious about larger dogs. When we brought Amber (our greyhound) home, they immediately began to get along well. If Amber gets too aggressive with her sniffing, Bell (our cat) will give her a gentle pat on the nose and Amber takes it well. We've got the cat's room with her food and litter box sectioned off with a baby gate, and Amber is in her crate if we aren't there to supervise. So far they've gotten along well but both have places to go if they want to get away from eachother. Hopefully you can find a similar situation!

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