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Darth_Ariel 12-13-2013 08:34 PM

Beating up on cat
Vader has had an obsession with cats since the day we brought him home, the problem being I have a non-confrontational cat who won't stick up for himself. It's not merely him seeing a cat running or playing and wanting to chase them down, if he knows a cat is somewhere in the area he will seek them out. His training classes are at a barn and the barn cats have even smacked him with their claws and it's done nothing to deter his obsession.

Does anyone have suggestions for what to do to deter him from going after them? He isn't aggressive with them but plays too rough since he's so much bigger than them and tries to play with them like he would another dog.
I'm out of ideas short of covering the cat in Pepto since that is the only thing he won't lick. Help!

MaggieRoseLee 12-14-2013 09:41 AM

If your cats have claws, and they have many places to hide and avoid your dog, then I wouldn't generally worry about them. Cats are MUCH tougher then you may think, and if they get mad and use those claws I know my dogs will back off. If they aren't using the claws then they are putting up with their big dopey dog friend....

I had one of my dogs actually carry around my cat like a kitten in her mouth and the cat LET HER!!! I didn't encourage this but it would happen!

In the meantime, if you are still worried, there is a great command that will work not only for the cat but for all kinds of issues that come up (dog eating dead squirrel? dog eating goose poop? dog going for some trash?) and that's the 'Leave It' command.

Darth_Ariel 12-14-2013 11:25 AM

He actually gives the cat panic attacks, which sounds really silly and looks adorable but it's rather pitiful. He doesn't hurt the cat intentionally, if I tell him Leave it or Come he runs right over but runs right back over to him. My house is a chorus of "Leave it" some days, the cat really has only gotten scratches but Vader seems to be aloof to what the claws mean. He's gotten one fish hooked through his lip, as soon as I got it out he was right back to chasing him. He will sniff out the cat and look for his hiding places just so he can play with him. I don't want to kill his prey drive completely, but channel it since he's trying to train for SAR. He doesn't chase other small animals, great with small dogs, it's seriously just cats he is fixated on.

Completely off topic, but I never realized you're in my little part of the woods.

Sansa's Mom 12-14-2013 12:49 PM

Thats the opposite of cat is a scrappy little guy and constantly antagonizes my dog when she wants to relax. It helped a lot with crate training though, she started retreating to her crate when the cat gets too crazy.

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janr 12-19-2013 08:30 PM

You need to watch the interaction the dog has with cats very closely. Last Thursday our dog killed our cat that we've had for several years and I never thought that would happen. They didn't have a good relationship although they would tolerate each other. All it took was for me to leave the cat in the house with the dog unsupervised one time and my dog took advantage of that.
Make sure the cat has somewhere to escape at all times

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