Do cats and dogs really not get along? More importantly, will the new rottweiler you are bringing home get along with your pet cat? Or will the new cat you are bringing home be a problem for your rott?
Rottweilers get along with cats if they have been properly socialized. Introduction and training to need to be done in order for a rottweiler to accept a cat. Rottweilers are protective and will lash out if they feel threatened.
Learning how to properly socialize your rottweiler is fundamental to helping him or her adjust to a cat or any animal for that matter. If socialized properly, then your dog should have no problems with a family cat or any other cat for that matter.
Rottweilers and Cats
Rottweilers are a very territorial breed of dogs. They also have a reputation for being violent dogs. Surprisingly enough, this is not entirely true. Rottweilers get along with cats pretty well. They get along with cats much better than they typically get along with other dogs of the same sex.
This is, of course, if they have been socialized properly and usually if they are raised around cats or other animals.
The most ideal situation is for a new rottweiler puppy to come into a home that already has one or more cats. This way, the rottie will be used to being around other animals all of the time. They will be raised around the cats and will not know anything different.
If they are raised with cats around them constantly, they will associate the cats as members of the family and they will do anything thing they need to do to protect those cats. They will see them as a family that needs their protection.
Importance of Socializing your Rottweiler
However, not every situation or case is ideal; more often than not, rottweilers will come into homes not as puppies. They might be ones who have been in homes where they are the only pet. Sometimes a cat will be brought home to a rottweiler who has never been around or even seen cats before. Of course, you can’t predict exactly what will happen in any of these situations will happen.
This is why socializing is so important. Rottweilers have innate traits to be protective. This can sometimes, without proper training, show itself as aggression or violence.
Right from the beginning, rottweilers need to know what it is like to be around other people and animals. If you do this, introducing your rott to a cat will be much simpler.
You can take your rottweiler to dog parks so he or she can see what it is like to be in the same environment as other others. You can also take him or her to family, friends or neighbors houses’ to meet their animals.
How to Introduce Your Rottweiler to a Cat
There are a couple of different scenarios that occur when you are faced with the need to introduce your rottweiler to a cat. The same basic principles apply, but each situation should be given your full attention and great care.
One of the most important things is to never leave your rottweiler alone with the cat until they both feel comfortable with each other.
You will need to introduce them with your rottweiler on a leash, and you won’t want to remove the leash until you are certain the rottweiler is not going to act out.
Do not force your rottweiler into this situation. If they are not ready, it could end badly and someone could get hurt. You want your rottweiler to know you are not trying to surprise or catch him or her off guard.
Your rottweiler knows and sees you as someone who protects them. They will trust you to bring them into this new situation as long as you do not give them a reason to not trust you.
If both the cat and the rottweiler are going to be living in the same house, you will want to make sure that they each have their own, separate bed, or “home base.” This is a place where they each feel safe by themselves and they should always know they can go there.
It is also important to praise both the cat and the dog throughout the whole process. Give the treats so that they have positive thoughts about each other and the memory of their meeting is also positive.
Bringing a Rottweiler to a Home with a Cat
You will want to make sure both the cat and the rottweiler are ready for this introduction. A good way to start is to give both the cat and your rottweiler something that smells like the opposite animal. That way, they can sniff at it and get used to it before being introduced.
You may want to build up to the first time they are in the same room with each other. This can be done by introducing them first through a glass door or window, then through a barrier such as a gate where they can sniff each other through it.
Next, you will want to bring your rottweiler, on a leash, into the room with the cat. (Tip for all first-time interactions: always bring the rottweiler into the room with the cat. Rottweilers are extremely territorial, and they might view another animal coming into the room as a threat.)
Let the cat and the rottweiler sniff at each other and get used to each other, then if it goes positively you can let your rott off of his or her leash and let them play around.
Be patient, it might not go positively on their first encounter.
Bringing a Cat to a Home with a Rottweiler
This will go through a pretty similar process, but the difference here is that your rottweiler is going to be used to the house not having a cat in it, so it will be a little bit of a different feeling for your rott.
Again, you will want to bring him or her into the room with the cat on a leash after some introductions have been done via swapping scents and seeing each other through glass or other barriers.
Your rottweiler trusts you to keep him or her safe, so keep him or her right up next to you so he or she does not feel ganged up against, or like you are abandoning him or her.
Remember to stay in the same room as the cat and your rottweiler until they both feel comfortable.
Introducing your Rottweiler to a Cat Outside of the Home
This situation is less crucial and usually does not need as much attention because, oftentimes, this is introducing your rottweiler to a friend or family members cat. They won’t be a permanent resident in the home the rottweiler is used to.
The first couple of times your rottweiler meets this cat, he or she should stay on the leash the whole time. This can be the case, especially if your visits with this cat are going to be short.
Follow the same principles and remember that your rott trusts you and he or she believes that you are not going to put him or her into a negative situation.
Body Language to Pay Attention to
Just like with humans, body language is everything. Your rottweiler’s body language can tell you if the introduction to a cat has been or is being a positive or negative experience for him or her. Here are some signs to pay attention to that will let you know how your rottweiler is feeling.
If your rottweiler is displaying signs of being relaxed then you can most likely move to the next step. Whether this is removing the leash or just moving a little closer.
If he or she is showing signs that he or she may be anxious or nervous, you may want to slow down or stop and try the introductions another time.
Signs Your Rottweiler is Relaxed
- His or her tail nub is wagging.
- He or she is sitting or standing with a relaxed posture.
- He or she is moving around gently.
- He or she is behaving in a playful manner.
- He or she is acting curious of the new friend.
- He or she is acting goofy.
Signs Your Rottweiler May be Anxious
- The hair on his or her back (hackles) are raised signifying he or she is angry or feeling alarmed.
- He is or she is panting excessively.
- Lip Licking is taking place.
- He or she has a stiff posture.
- You can see the whites of his or her eyes.
- His or her ears are laid back.
As you are mindful of these body signs and other things discussed in this post, you should have a positive experience when introducing your rottweiler to a cat. They should get along great.