Need Advice adopted GSD and Housecat problems.. - German Shepherd Dog Forums
Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
post #1 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-28-2009, 12:01 AM Thread Starter
Elite Member
 
Toffifay's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: California
Posts: 1,116
Need Advice adopted GSD and Housecat problems..

Hello folks, I recently adopted a GSD through this forum, actually, and she has made leaps and bounds of improvement in only 10 days. I have one area of great importance that I am not able to make any breakthroughs, unfortunately.

I have an indoor only cat. He is kind of wimpy and is terrified of the new dog. This dog seems to have a very high prey drive and loves to chase any sort of critter, birds, lizards, bugs, rodents, squirrels and rabbits. She actually caught a rabbit 3 days ago and it screamed and thrashed (so sad!) and it startled her so she let it go.

I have tried to have the new dog on a leash with the cat in the room and the dog goes crazy, jumping , whining, lunging. I have tried to have the cat in crate in the room and the dog is just as obsessed. I tried to hold the cat in my arms and dog tore a good sized hole in the screen door trying to get the cat. uugh.

I am working on commands such as "leave it", but when it comes to small animals I am unable to re-direct the dogs attention. Her focus is intense.

The cat is actually my daughter pet, and it is her "baby". If anything were to happen her cat because I wanted to add another dog to the household, I would feel like a selfish and horrible parent!

If anyone has had any experience in this department I would be glad for any advice!

Thanks so much! ~Gia~

You can catch more flies with honey than you can with vinegar!
Toffifay is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-28-2009, 12:07 AM
Elite Member
 
weber1b's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Chicagoland
Posts: 1,484
Re: Need Advice adopted GSD and Housecat problems..

I am sure there will be plenty of advice from folks with more experience than me, but I am going through the same thing. Our first dog came from rescue already cat ready. Max however is a project in that respect.

It will take lots of patience and work. You will likely have to keep them seperated for a while and keep working at it. Part of it is just desensitization. Also the dog needs to come to understand that the cat is part of your pack, therefore part of his too.

Do you have a crate for the dog? Nothing like him being crated and watching the cat hand out with you.

Child gates will be needed to make sure the cat has some safe zones until the job is accomplished. I didn't want to hear when I was advised it could take 6 months, but I'm on 5 and it's working, but still not "there" yet.

Patience and perseverence and you will succeed, although there are some dogs who can never be trusted with cats.

Clover - GSD 9 yr old Rescue
R.I.P. Spats, Sophie, Emmie, Pooh Bear, Rogue, Max and Patton

Remember, if someone has a problem with you.........it is in fact their problem.
weber1b is offline  
post #3 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-28-2009, 12:15 AM
Elite Member
 
weber1b's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Chicagoland
Posts: 1,484
Re: Need Advice adopted GSD and Housecat problems..

BTW, we have three cats with my daughter's boyfriends cat making 4 on occasion.

Clover - GSD 9 yr old Rescue
R.I.P. Spats, Sophie, Emmie, Pooh Bear, Rogue, Max and Patton

Remember, if someone has a problem with you.........it is in fact their problem.
weber1b is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #4 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-28-2009, 01:31 AM
Master Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Baltimore, MD
Posts: 650
Re: Need Advice adopted GSD and Housecat problems..

When we first got Bodie, if the cat was ever around, he would completely forget that we were even there. To make it worse our cat was timid too, and would run every time he was around, inciting his prey drive. We used a water bottle to squirt him in the face every time he tried to chase her. It doesn't hurt, snapped him out of his focus, and we were able to teach him "leave it" that way. No point in teaching something if he's not even listening. We only used water, none of that water + lemon, or water + vinegar nonsense. That can damage or hurt their eyes.
Virginia is offline  
post #5 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-28-2009, 01:13 PM
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: MI
Posts: 219
Re: Need Advice adopted GSD and Housecat problems..

We have the same problem at home. We installed a cat door to the laundry room (that's where the cat's food & litter are). The youngest cat is gettling a little more curious than scared now. We'll catch her peeking around the corner when Jake is sleeping. The other cat, the queen bee. She pretty much comes around as she pleases, actually sits on the other side of child gate we put at the stairs and stares at Jake, hisses and moans a little, but of course won't move .. driving Jake absolutely crazy! At first I felt bad for her, cuz when Jake actually could catch her . .OMG . . sounded like she was possessed. But now . . I don't . . she brings it on her self.

The point . . it's getting better . .and we don't do anything. They all learn their place. Jake doesn't hurt the cats, has never bitten, mouthed, etc. Just the paw in the face :-)

"There's something comforting about being in a house where dog hair litters the sofa and bedspreads."

Jake GSD - 4/23/08
Maggie May GSD - TBD
Beemer resuce kitty - 2001
Porsche Himalayan - 6/2003
mkewish is offline  
post #6 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-28-2009, 01:19 PM
Crowned Member
 
pupresq's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Kentucky
Posts: 5,485
Re: Need Advice adopted GSD and Housecat problems..

Sometimes this problem is workable and sometimes it is not. High prey drive dogs have killed many a cat unfortunately. I know of two fellow rescue people who had it happen to them, one was a kitten she had handraised. It was devastating for her.

Anybody that knows me knows I am not one to encourage returning a dog or ever one to give up lightly, but prey drive is one area that can be a difficult thing to change. Please be very very very careful as you're working on this. One accidently cracked door or a dog left unsupervised for a second can mean tragedy.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
pupresq is offline  
post #7 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-28-2009, 08:14 PM
Knighted Member
 
Zisso's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Baker City, OR
Posts: 3,221
Re: Need Advice adopted GSD and Housecat problems..

This is something I went thru just two months ago or so. When I adopted Z, he was almost a year and a half and I was told he was not cat safe. I tend to like a challenge. I used a muzzle on Z and let him sniff the cats behinds a few times while he was crated first. Then, while still using the muzzle, I allowed him to sit at my feet while I held each cat. He was not allowed to sniff when I was holding the cats at first. As he calmed down, then he would be allowed to sniff. He could come in my room to see my 'queen bee' but never up on "her bed". Each cat has their own space where they are safe from him if he gets overly sniffy. It was the way Cesar Milan says 'own that item' so I owned these cats until he could behave. Now they all live in harmony. I adopted this dog on Feb 7, 09 and he has had free roam of the house at night for a month. This is all indoors- we are working on cat manners outdoors still but he has a decent respect for them sharp claws now too Hope this helps!!

Nadia - GSD -DOB 12-29-07
Zisso - GSD- DOB 9-16-07
Pepe & Kiki`my sweet kitties

Zisso is my heart~Nadia is my Love~My kitties bring me everything in between~Together they bring me Joy!
Zisso is offline  
post #8 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-28-2009, 08:34 PM
Knighted Member
 
Zisso's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Baker City, OR
Posts: 3,221
Re: Need Advice adopted GSD and Housecat problems..

Forgot to say that eventually, hopefully the dog will understand that not only do you own that cat, but that the cat is a part of the pack

Nadia - GSD -DOB 12-29-07
Zisso - GSD- DOB 9-16-07
Pepe & Kiki`my sweet kitties

Zisso is my heart~Nadia is my Love~My kitties bring me everything in between~Together they bring me Joy!
Zisso is offline  
post #9 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-28-2009, 09:21 PM
Elite Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Dallas, TX
Posts: 1,342
Re: Need Advice adopted GSD and Housecat problems..

I use the water bottle trick, and I made my own cat trees...the big carpeted cat things....so that the cats can get away from the dogs. It takes a LOT of work with some dogs. When the dog goes for the cat squirt them and make a high pitched noise...kind of like the rabbit did to scare her. Also use the positive reinforcement as the dog begins to be calm around the cats give a treat or reward for ignoring it. It may or may not be workable. I also use a baby gate to block off a room specifically for the cats to get away from the dogs.

Keep in mind though that mine are not horribly prey driven only slightly, but these tips may help to some extent.

Riley Feb 07 GSD
Snowy Apr 06 Cat
Pichu Apr 06 Cat
Baby Girl Dec 07 Blind Tortie Shell Cat
Tiger Oct 08 Cat
Kiyoko Apr 09 DDB
At the Bridge:
Trooper Jan 93-0ct 03 my heart, my soul
Ruby Jan 98-Jan 11 GSD
Bear Aug 03-June 11 GSD
maggs30 is offline  
post #10 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-28-2009, 11:33 PM Thread Starter
Elite Member
 
Toffifay's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: California
Posts: 1,116
Re: Need Advice adopted GSD and Housecat problems..

Thank you everyone for your advice and insight! Last night I had the cat in a safe crate in the middle of the living room (much to his dismay!) and I kept Toffee on a leash (with a prong collar) next to me while I watched Heroes on TV, lol. She was pretty much acting like a "kitty junkie". Quivering, panting, staring...but remaining in down postition next to me. I re-directed her attention as often as every couple of minutes and when she would relax, I praised her for her calmness. I am going to try this approach again tonight. I'm calling a animal behaviorist tommorrow..I am fully aware of how dangerous this situation is. I have been hardwired to check gates, doors, locks, fences..etc. having worked with dogs and horses for most of my life!
I can't tell you how much this dog has improved in such a short time! She really is brilliant and I am dually impressed with her adaptablility and willingness to please me! This is the only hurdle that I am having difficulty getting over...
Toffee is so very bright and STABLE...I just can't believe that she won't eventually realize that this cat is MY cat and not to be hunted.

You can catch more flies with honey than you can with vinegar!
Toffifay is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the German Shepherd Dog Forums forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in










Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page



Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
5 month old adopted GSD biting problems mocamacho92 Puppy Behavior 1 03-30-2012 03:36 AM
Need Advice on Jealousy problems Jelpy Aggression (the good, the bad & the ugly) 22 02-27-2012 11:35 PM
Adopted my first Rescue - Need some advice!! CPH Rescue, Foster & Adoption Information (General) 5 07-02-2011 08:24 PM
I need advice on a few behavior problems akittrell Puppy Behavior 6 06-24-2010 02:32 PM
I just adopted my first GSD... problems already cdowling General Information 12 12-02-2008 08:54 PM

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome