Achieving Balance and Harmony

DOG BEHAVIOR

Dog Not Getting Along with Cat

Hi Cesar:

I just adopted a two-and-a-half-month-old Blue Nose pit bull. She is pure-bred and very gentle but still a puppy. My challenge is I have two one-year-old cats, and they have been hiding since the dog came into our household.

The dog lunges at them to play, and it freaks them out. I think the dog just wants to play with them. What should I do to get them to all live together peacefully?

Cathi Lane

Cesar's Answer;

Dear Cathi:

The only reason that dogs or any animals will hide from each other is that they sense the energy from a newcomer is not stable enough. That would be the reason that they are hiding. Because the reaction of the cats is to run away from the dog, it makes sense for the dog to go into predator mode – and remember, dogs are natural predators! – and keep tapping into their weakness.

Because he is a puppy right, now he is coming from a playful point-of-view, but if we don’t start regulating the behavior right now, this playful behavior can turn into hunting behavior, or dominant, territorial, or aggressive behavior.

The cats don’t see your dog as a “scary pit bull”; they see him as the unstable energy he projects, so we have to make sure we empower the cats by lowering the energy of the dog. That means that whenever the puppy is around the cats, he is in a low-level energy state. That means the puppy has to be vigorously exercised before he comes and meets and greets the cats. That way, the cats will begin to sense a softer energy coming from the puppy.

The cats are already overwhelmed, and they are clearly telling you they don’t trust this dog. It’s your responsibility to keep the family balanced by keeping this dog at the highest level of calm-submission possible, in order for the cats to become calm-assertive in front of him. You do this consistently and with discipline and eventually the cats will tell the dog what to do. Then the cats will be safe to be with the dog.

Of course cats can bully a dog, too, so the behavior can totally turn around to where the dog can be hiding from the cats if you empower the cats too much. It is important to understand balance and be able to read the energy of your animals, so no matter what species you choose. your whole household will always remain balanced and peaceful.

Stay calm and assertive,

Cesar Millan

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