Have you been considering adding a puppy to your household, but worry the new dog won’t get along with your resident cats? You may have heard that some dog breeds are known to chase small, furry creatures, and that’s the last thing you need at home.
Luckily, there are several dog breeds that get along with cats. In this article, you’ll learn why Pugs, Golden Retrievers, Malteses, Bernese Mountain Dogs, Corgis (Pembroke Welsh & Cardigan Welsh), and Papillons get along great with domestic cats.
THE REBELLIOUS TEENAGER OF THE DOMESTIC PET KINGDOM
Ah, cats. You either love them or you hate them. Unlike dogs who live to please their owners and are willing to die to keep their favorite person safe, a cat’s loyalty is much more… ahem, nuanced. We’ve seen first-hand a hero cat maul an aggressive dog in order to protect a child from getting attacked. And we’ve also seen a cat nudge trinkets off of a dresser throughout the dead of night to see which falling object might wake its owner up, because, you know, cats have their own science going on.
If you own one or many cats, then you love them as much as we do. You might even proudly call yourself a cat person. Wink, wink to all the blushing cat ladies out there… But what if you want to add a dog to your pet family? No one knows the personalities of each of your cats like you do, and already you might be nervous that your resident felines might take issue with the boundless exuberance of an overtly optimistic puppy.
The great thing about cats is that they truly are adaptable. And though they’ll probably regard your new puppy with an air of reservation that’s cooler than a frozen cucumber, as long as you provide your feline friend(s) with a safe space or room where the puppy is never allowed to enter, your cat(s) will slowly and surely investigate your puppy in their own time, and eventually come to accept (and maybe even love!) their new dog sibling.
That being said, there are some dog breeds that will naturally antagonize cats and other small furry creatures. Dog breeds that are not compatible with cats include…
These Breeds Do Not Get Along with Cats:
- Shih Tzus
- Schnauzers & Miniature Schnauzers
- Jack Russell Terriers
- Yorkshire Terriers
- Siberian Huskies
As a general rule, all dog breeds within the hound and hunting working group of dogs will not get along with cats. These breeds were bred to hunt and chase small furry creatures, and no amount of training will remove this innate animalistic drive. Before you bring a particular breed home to your cats, it’s a good idea to research the breed to make sure that it wasn’t originally bred to hunt small game.
And now for PuppyBuddy’s favorite dog breeds for cats!
In the mid-1980s, most of us Gen-Xers looked at our ET, Chubble, and Ewok toys and wished our parents had given us what we really wanted—a Pug. The flat face, huge eyes, and stout posture make the Pug one of the cutest creatures out there. Their small size and profound lack of agility also make them non-threatening to cats. They simply can’t keep up. Your Pug will be more interested in snuggling on your lap and trying to catch his breath after climbing the couch to get to you, than he will be in bothering your resident cat(s). Pugs are naturally docile and accepting of other animals, so when your cat(s) warm up to the new puppy, you might discover that they join the snuggle fest and rely on your Pug for affection, too.
Humble, patient, and incredibly gentle, Golden Retrievers are not only the #1 family dog in America, they’re also one of the most compatible breeds for cats and other domestic animals. Thanks to their naturally reserved, curious, and obedient nature, a Golden Retriever will be curious about your cat(s) for the purposes of befriending them and not for any interest in chasing them. Due to the bouncy energy of Golden Retriever puppies, it’s recommended to allow only limited exposure between your cat(s) and the puppy until you’ve trained your Goldie with basic commands including “down,” “stay,” and “drop it” among others. This will add an extra layer of protection once you permit your cat(s) to freely spend time with your puppy. That being said, Golden Retrievers have a “soft” mouth and gentle disposition, making them great housemates for cats.
Small, mellow, and snuggly, the Maltese is a great companion for both people and cats. This lovable dog breed is simply not interested in cats, and therefore will be able to live in peace and harmony within a household of cats and other pets. If you decide to bring a Maltese home, however, we advise that you keep a close watch on your cat(s) and be sure to have a cat-only room where you can corral your kitties in the event that they try to intimate or antagonize your Maltese. Certain cats with more territorial personalities have been known to bully or otherwise take advantage of the sweet disposition of the Maltese dog breed, and so you’ll want to watch out for that and remove your cats if they become aggressive or intimidating.
BERNESE MOUNTAIN DOGS
The Bernese Mountain Dog is a large dog breed from the working group that was originally bred to herd livestock. Because this breed is not a hound or hunting breed, it doesn’t possess a drive to chase after small furry creatures. In fact, any dog breed that belongs to the “herding” or “shepherding” working group will get along with cats, since cats are simply not the type of animal they’ve been bred to care about. Bernese Mountain Dogs are sturdy, loyal dogs that have a decent amount of stamina and energy for long walks, hikes, and of course, herding. Around the house, however, your Bernese will be relaxed, docile, and otherwise content to lounge around with you… and the cats are welcome to join!
Another herding dog from the working group is the Corgi. Corgis actually come in two distinct breeds, the Pembroke Welsh Corgi and the Cardigan Welsh Corgi. Both breeds of Corgi get along well with cats, so we’ll proceed by referring simply to “Corgis.” Corgis have a friendly and playful nature, and they enjoy interacting with cats. As far as dog breeds go, Corgis are fairly sturdy and resilient, so they won’t be offended if your cat(s) is either aloof or aggressive. Your Corgi will take it all in stride.
Corgis are also very smart and have good skills of observation. For example, if your Corgi notices that you habitually tell your cat not to scratch the side of the couch, don’t be surprised if your Corgi takes it upon himself to police your cat, preventing the cat from scratching the couch! Upholder of rules and defender of peace, your Corgi will quickly settle into his place within the household as a furry, friendly authority figure that makes sure everyone is safe and sound.
The Papillon is a small, friendly companion dog that will naturally accept your resident cat(s). The only thing Papillons won’t tolerate is being left all by themselves. One of the great things about having a house cat or two is that your Papillon won’t feel alone if you’re gone. Thanks to the sweet, snuggle temperament of the Papillon, this dog will likely seek out your cat and cautiously ask for a snuggle if and when you aren’t around. Papillons love to love, and will make a nice addition to your pet family.
There is one caveat with the Papillon dog breed when it comes to getting along with cats. This breed is playful and thanks to its small size, it can really tear through a home if it needs to discharge a lot of energy. This playfulness, when aimed at your house cat, could annoy your cat. Though the Papillon will not “chase” your cat as an instinctual drive to hunt, it might seem that way to your cat. It’s a good idea to have a cat-only room in your home and some high-up safe spots in every room until your Pap puppy is trained and mature. That being said, for many cats, one look at a Papillon’s fluffy, wagging tail is enough to trigger their own drive to hunt. You may have to train your cat to respect your Pap’s tail, otherwise it might look like a cat toy!
That wraps up PuppyBuddy’s list of the best dog breeds that are good with cats. We sell all the dog breeds mentioned in this article at our Boca Raton, Florida location, as well as an assortment of adorable kittens. We hope to see you soon!