How to Train a Husky to Get Along with Cats

Hard
6-12 Months
Behavior

Introduction

Since the early days of cartoons, the dynamic between cats and dogs has always been illustrated as bitter rivals. The dog chases the cat, the cat chases the mouse, and the mouse looks for the cheese. Unfortunately for many pet owners, there is some truth to the fiction. Just like cats are sometimes driven to chase and kill mice, many dogs are also compelled to chase, and sometimes kill, their feline roommates. These are, of course, extreme cases, but preventing your cat from facing unnecessary stress is important. This issue is prominent especially with owners of Huskies, who are well known for having a high prey drive.

A “prey drive” is what compels a Husky to chase small animals in and around the home, which can include birds, mice, insects, squirrels, and even the household cat. This behavior can easily put your cat in danger and should be addressed as soon as it is recognized in any dog, but Huskies especially require plenty of care and training to help catch this behavior early on and prevent an unfortunate incident.

Defining Tasks

There are many ways to help your Husky get along with your cat, but an important thing to remember is that prey drive is instinctual. This drive to chase and sometimes kill can overpower obedience if the training foundation is not strong enough. The importance of keeping an eye on both your Husky and your cat cannot be stressed enough in these cases and your dog’s success will heavily depend on your consistency and ability to maintain any and all training that you put in place for him.

It’s important to not wait until after your dog has already developed a habit of chasing cats to push for this training, as then the instinct may be too ingrained. However, there are still ways to manage both of your pets even if this is the case. Regardless, start training as early as possible when your Husky is still a puppy and be prepared to maintain this training throughout his lifetime.

Getting Started

Before beginning, ensure that your Husky has basic obedience under his belt. Important commands will be ‘sit’, ‘stay’, and ‘leave it’. Any other commands are a plus, but these can come in handy if you find yourself in a situation where you need to maintain control over your dog.

Be prepared with a leash for more control and some treats that your Husky cannot resist for positive reinforcement. Invest in a couple of interactive toys to occupy your Husky's attention. Set up barriers between your two animals during training to ensure your cat’s safety. Prevention is a large component when it comes to training a predator around potential prey.

The Early Adjustment Method

Most Recommended
4 Votes
Step
1
Start early
This method absolutely requires you to begin adjusting your Husky to cats when he is a puppy. As soon as he is vaccinated, begin your training.
Step
2
Supervise introductions
Always keep an eye on your dog around cats or any other small animals. Never leave two animals unsupervised.
Step
3
Leashed encounters
Begin your Husky’s introductions to cats on leash. The leash should be loose so you don’t encourage tension or stress, but you should still remain in control. Have your puppy interact with both you and the cat in healthy and productive ways.
Step
4
Off-leash encounters
Once your Husky exhibits no problem behavior around cats, you may proceed to off-leash encounters. Be sure that you can easily remove one or both of the animals in case the encounter becomes stressful for either.
Step
5
Watch for aggression
An aggressive dog may begin to use his teeth inappropriately during play. Watch for any excessive mouthing and stop play immediately if he becomes too rough. An anxious or aggressive cat may pin their ears back and wag their tail back and forth to show irritation. They may also arch the back and hiss. Remove both animals if there are any signs of stress.
Recommend training method?

The Separation Method

Effective
2 Votes
Step
1
Provide separate living areas
Some Huskies and cats simply cannot co-exist appropriately. Provide separate rooms for your dog and your cat so that they both have their own safe havens if this is the case.
Step
2
Provide escape routes
Cats are much more likely to run and hide if they are stressed. Provide places where they can escape high up and away from your Husky. Be sure that there are no ways for your dog to climb up to get at them.
Step
3
Use barriers
Utilize closed doors or baby gates to keep your Husky from approaching your cat in places he may not want to be approached.
Step
4
Always supervise
As always, keep an eye on your dog and cat if they are ever in the same room together. If you are going to leave the house, place them in separate areas and away from each other.
Step
5
Watch for body language
Be proactive when it comes to interactions between your dog and cat. Aggressive body language should never be ignored and should always be addressed. Do not hesitate to involve a professional behaviorist or trainer to prevent your Husky from harming your cat.
Recommend training method?

The Reinforcement Method

Least Recommended
2 Votes
Step
1
Find a distraction
When in the presence of a cat, provide your Husky with a more interesting toy, treat, or game to promote indifference towards the cat. Busy his mind with an interactive toy full of yummy treats. This should keep him busy, and take the importance off the cat.
Step
2
Reward ignoring
Offer plenty of praise and treats for your Husky’s indifference. Ignoring is better than obsession and he will learn quickly that the cat is not something worth chasing.
Step
3
Supervise all encounters
Keep an eye on both your dog and your cat if they are ever in the same room together. This can help prevent incidents from occurring.
Step
4
Reward positive interaction
If you find it appropriate to allow your dog to interact with your cat, be sure to reward him with lots of affection and positive reinforcement for good behavior. Do not reward hyper-focusing or any instances of your dog following your cat around excessively. This behavior should be interrupted.
Step
5
Separate if necessary
Separate your dog and cat if either exhibit signs of aggression or stress. Place them in separate rooms and only try again once both have settled down.
Recommend training method?

Success Stories and Training Questions

Training Questions and Answers

Question
Odin
Siberian Husky
1 Year
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Odin
Siberian Husky
1 Year

He nips at the new kitten

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
225 Dog owners recommended

Your best bet in this situation is to go with a method to desensitize him to the cat. Odin needs to learn that the cat is just a normal part of the household. So we need to teach him to become less reactive by the cat. If you are up for this, it is going to take about a month of consistent practice before you see results. You will want to start out by teaching him "leave it". Leave is great for anything you want your dog to leave alone. Instructions on leave it will be at the end of this response. After about a week or so of working on the command, you can start taking him around the cats while on leash. Any time he even looks at a cat, you give the command leave it. Once he breaks his attention away from the cats, you reward him with a treat. Ideally, you want to him to be sitting and looking at you. But in the beginning stages, as long as he isn't focused on the cat, you can reward him. You will literally practice this over and over, while moving closer to the cats until he is no longer interested in the cats. While this method takes a while, it is the best in relaying the messages across to your dog. The cats need to be left alone! Here are the steps for "leave it" Teaching a dog 'leave it' Teaching “leave it” is not difficult. Begin the lessons inside your home or in an area with very few distractions. Here are the steps for teaching “leave it”: Make sure you have two different types of treats. One type can be fairly boring to the dog, but the other type should be a high-value treat that he finds pretty delicious. You will also want to make sure that the treats are broken up into pea-sized pieces so it won’t take him too long to eat them. Put one type of treat in each hand. If you like to train with a clicker as your marker, you can also hold a clicker in the same hand that holds the high-value treat. Then, place both of your hands behind your back. Make a fist with the hand that is holding the treat of lower value and present your fist to your dog, letting him sniff. Say “leave it” and wait until he finishes sniffing your fist. As soon as your dog is done sniffing, you can either click with the clicker or say “yes.” Then offer him the higher-value treat in your other hand. Repeat until your dog immediately stops sniffing your hand when you say “leave it.” When you say “leave it” and he stops sniffing right away, leash your dog and then toss a low-value treat outside of his reach. Wait until he stops sniffing and pulling toward the treat. As soon as he does, either say “yes” or click and then give him a high-value treat from your hand. Practice this exercise a number of times. Over time, by practicing “leave it,” your dog should stop pulling as soon as you give the cue. When rewarding him with a treat, make sure that it is something good, not plain old kibble. By doing so, you are teaching him that asking him to leave some food doesn’t mean he won’t get anything, but that in fact he might get something even more delicious. When your dog is reliably responding to the cue, you can teach him that “leave it” can apply to other things as well, not just food on the floor. Repeat the exercise with five different items that are fairly boring to your dog. After using five different “boring” items, start using slightly more exciting items. You know your dog, so you alone know what items he would consider more interesting, but don’t jump to high-value items right away. To increase his chances of success at learning the cue, you want to work up to high-value items gradually. If Kleenex or a piece of plastic, for instance, would attract your dog on a walk, don’t start with those. Choose the items based on your ultimate goal: Anytime you say “leave it,” you want to be confident that your dog will indeed leave whatever you are asking him to leave. . The reward he receives when he leaves an item can change as well. If your dog has a favorite toy, squeak it and play for a moment when he comes running to you after leaving the other item of interest. Most dogs love interacting with us, so a moment of praise or play with a toy can be just as effective as a treat. Keep it fun Even though you’re practicing “leave it” as a way to keep your dog safe, you want him to see it as a fun game you play. When your dog is proficient at the game in your home, start practicing in a variety of locations with more distractions.

Add a comment to Odin's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Kody
Husky
13 Months
2 found helpful
Question
2 found helpful
Kody
Husky
13 Months

My dog is being nice but will chase the cat if it runs. The cat is the one that attacks when i introduce them to eachother

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello Luke, Work on teaching Kody a "Leave It" command and practice that command around food, favorite items, movement, and distractions. For example, once Kody can leave food dropped on the floor alone, then put him on a long leash and work on "Leave It" by telling him to "Leave It" when you throw food. Do this on a leash so that you can prevent him from getting the food if he disobeys. When he obeys, reward him with a treat from another location. Never give him the food you told him to leave though. To teach "Leave It" follow one of the methods from the article that I have linked below. You will need to initially just teach him what "Leave It" means but your end goal is to practice it with movement involved to develop his self-control. When he can leave the food, then set up scenarios where the cat runs, Kody is on a long leash, and you tell him to leave the cat alone, and reward him when he does.You may need to purchase a remote vibration collar to interrupt him when he starts to chase once he understands what to do and is able to do it but needs the command to be reinforced. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

Hello Kodey’s, we recently adopted a 3 years old female husky that the previous owner, which we know, says had two cats and that the husky (Fidji) had no problems with. It’s only been 11 days since we have her but yet she doesn’t seems to be able to get over her hyper excitment over my cats and continuously wants to interact with them. It comes sometimes that she’s able to get close enough to smell them and in that she’s very calm, but if they try to jump or run away she becomes excited and tries to peruse them for a step or two, never more and she’s not trying to bite them either. At night all is well as she sleeps with us on our bed. Any idea of how to just calm her down when she sees them moving?

Add a comment to Kody's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Max
Husky
3 Years
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Max
Husky
3 Years

We recently got a 7 week kitten and our dog max just stares at him through the door he would just be really focused on him, today he barked. Max tends to be really territorial and takes times being friendly with other dogs. How do I get him to be less aggressive towards the kitten and be able to be relaxed

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello Darlene, First, check out the videos linked below on correcting the fixating on the kitten. Jeff Gellman cat aggressive dog: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_MLJV5PBh7Y More e-collar work with cats: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v8lkbX0dhT0 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9dPIC3Jtn0E Reward Max for ignoring the cat, being tolerant, calm, and friendly in a calm way. I highly suggest using a basket muzzle, back tie leash, regular leash, crate, gate, or some other form of barrier or safety device for a while after both are doing well to minimize the ongoing risk during the transition period. When you are not home, crate Max in a separate room from cat. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

Add a comment to Max's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Mona
Siberian Husky
1 Year
1 found helpful
Question
1 found helpful
Mona
Siberian Husky
1 Year

We adopted Mona about 3 weeks ago. I have been working with training her. We have mastered sit and stay she will do as long as there aren't any distractions. Our cat has been confined to our bedroom which has Glass doors out to the back yard. So mona has seen the cat through the doors and has had a few short leashed visits with the cat. The problem is when she sees the cat she is completely focused in the cat. I have tried everything to try and change her focus (treats, toys, cheese, even turkey!) and none of it is as good as the cat. How do I get her to focus on me, or something else when the cat is so enthralling to her!? Thank you for your help!

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello Lindsay, First of all I would work on getting Mona used to wearing a soft, silicone, basket muzzle in preparation for future up-close introductions. You can do this by giving her lots of treats while you get her used to the muzzle. Give her a treat whenever you show her the muzzle, she sniffs the muzzle, you touch the muzzle to her, and eventually, you put the muzzle on, and then leave the muzzle on. Do this gradually over the next several days or weeks. A basket muzzle will have holes so that you can feed her small treats through while she is wearing it. You can also dip a straw in a bit of peanut butter and poke the straw through the muzzle for her to lick as a reward. If her fixation is really strong, then you need to seek professional help because it might be prey drive. If it is prey drive, then management may be your only option. If the fixation is simply curiosity and playful interest, then spending a lot of time around the cat, with the cat in a safe location, should help the cat to become boring. You probably need to use a form of correction to snap her out of her fixation. A prong collar correction might do the trick, but you want to be careful not to cause a negative association with the cat while doing this. Teach her the "Watch Me" or "Attention" command. When she is fixated on the cat tell her to "Watch Me", if she does not, then give a correction. As soon as her attention is off of the cat and back onto you, then give her another command and heavily reward her to paying attention to you and obeying. You want to correct her for disobedience instead of randomly correcting her in her mind. You also want to reward her for proper behavior at least as much as you correct her. If she does not want the treats that is fine, but continue to praise her and at least offer them. Look into how to properly fit and use a prong collar. A prong collar should be worn high on the neck, without slack in it. The prongs should gently touch the skin all the way around but should not poke into the skin at all unless the dog is being corrected. A correction should not take a lot of force if it is being done correctly. Two fingers on the leash should provide enough force for a good correction in most cases. I would also suggest hiring a trainer for this part too since it can be delicate. The trainer can assess her prey drive also. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

Add a comment to Mona's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Hermione
Siberian Husky
7 Months
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Hermione
Siberian Husky
7 Months

I have a male and female sibling pups that have been tortured by the neighbors instigating adult cats that my female pup has been trying to get to since she was 10 weeks old. She’s ALWAYS in wild Husky hunt mode while the male hides under the beds from her most of the time. One of the cats had a litter hidden in my shed and my female killed the momma so we nursed the kittens. My MH daughter became attached to one we’d like to keep but my pups still see them as prey. Is there any way to get them to stop looking at them like lunch and ease at least some of our worries of the damage they want to cause?

Darlene Stott
Darlene Stott
Dog Trainer and Groomer
104 Dog owners recommended

Hello, I would be very hesitant to put a cat or kitten in this situation. If Hermione killed a cat at her young age, it would appear that she has a prey drive not easy to change. You can hire a professional used to dealing with dogs that have a strong prey drive to come and assess Hermione to see if the behavior can be altered. But you cannot do it yourself. The best you can do is make sure that the cats and kittens are kept at a safe distance with an easy escape route. Keep Hermione on the leash at all times in the yard so she cannot reach the cats. Please consult a trainer as soon as possible. All the best.

Add a comment to Hermione's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Siku
Husky
1 Year
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Siku
Husky
1 Year

Hello, we recently got a Shepard and husky mix at one years old. We’ve had our baby kitten for about 2 months. Whenever our animals interact, the cat always starts hissing and throwing her back, which makes the dog react back. I’m having questions on how to slowly integrate them together without my husky getting violent.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello Brooke, Check out the videos linked below. For more severe prey drive, I do recommend working with a trainer who has experience in this area and comes well recommended, in person. Mild cat issue - teaching impulse control: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IWF2Ohik8iM Moderate cat issue - teaching impulse control using corrections and rewards: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9dPIC3Jtn0E Severe cat issue: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_MLJV5PBh7Y More e-collar work with cats with the same dog: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v8lkbX0dhT0 Work on impulse control in general with pup, by teaching things that increase impulse control and calmness - such as a long Place command around lots of distractions. Practicing the command until you get to the point where pup will stay on Place while you are working with the cat in the same room. Back tie pup while they are on place - connecting a long leash attached to pup to something near the Place just in case pup were to try to get off Place before you could intervene. Make sure all points of contact are secure. This keeps kitty safe while practicing and reinforces to pup that they can't get off the Place. The leash should be long enough that pup doesn't feel the leash while they are obediently staying on the Place because it has some slack in the leash. Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

Add a comment to Siku's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Bella
Siberian Husky
4 Months
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Bella
Siberian Husky
4 Months

Bella broke into our room because she knew there were newborn kittens in there, they were hidden, but she found them and snatched one out and bit it and scratched till it was dead. Is it too late to teach her that this can't happen? We disciplined her and she is in her cage now. We have several other cats she been plays with but doesn't harm. I'm not sure what happened..my husband just wants to get rid of her but I want to teach her. What can I do?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello Megan, The kittens are definitely a prey source in her mind, so she was likely hunting or very curious but accidentally killed while playing roughly - like she would with a squirrel or mouse. Because the other cats can hold their own and are larger, she may not see them as prey. Check out the videos linked below: Mild cat issue - teaching impulse control: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IWF2Ohik8iM Moderate cat issue - teaching impulse control using corrections and rewards: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9dPIC3Jtn0E Work on impulse control in general with pup, by teaching things that increase impulse control and calmness - such as a long, Place command around lots of distractions. Practicing the command until you get to the point where pup will stay on Place while you are working with the kitten in the same room. You can also back tie pup while they are on place - connecting a long leash attached to pup to something near the Place just in case pup were to try to get off Place before you could intervene. This keeps kitty safe while practicing and reinforces to pup that they can't get off the Place. The leash should be long enough that pup doesn't feel the leash while they are obediently staying on the Place because it has some slack in the leash. Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo Below are some other commands in general you can practice to help pup develop better impulse skill/self-control - impulse control takes practice for a dog to gain the ability to control herself. Crate manners: https://thegooddog.net/training-videos/free-how-to-training-videos/learn-to-train-the-good-dog-way-the-crate/ Thresholds: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_-w28C2g68M Heel article - The turns method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-poodle-to-heel Heel Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OTiKVc4ZZWo Down-Stay: https://www.thelabradorsite.com/train-your-labrador-to-lie-down-and-stay/ Leave It: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bite Out - which means leave the room: https://www.petful.com/behaviors/how-to-teach-a-dog-the-out-command/ Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

Add a comment to Bella's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Huck
Siberian Husky
7 Weeks
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Huck
Siberian Husky
7 Weeks

Hi. I have one dog who is one and a half and he is part Rat Terrier and part Red Heeler. I also have two older male cats. I’m getting a male husky puppy in about 6 weeks (he’s still with his mother because he’s only 1 week now). I want to make sure the introduction process will go smoothly. Any advice? My other pup does GREAT with other dogs, but sometimes he’s a bit rough.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello Gabrielle, First, I highly suggest crate training the puppy. Instead of letting him out of the crate when he cries, use the Surprise method from the article linked below to gradually help him learn to be calm in the crate and to relax by using rewards for being Quiet. https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Once puppy is crate trained then life with both dogs can be a lot easier for everyone. Crate pup at night and when you leave, and you can use an exercise pen with some toys in it also. When you cannot directly supervise the dogs together, puppy should be crated or in the pen. When you are supervising, teach both dogs the Out command (which means leave the area) and make whoever is causing issues leave the area as needed. Out command: https://www.petful.com/behaviors/how-to-teach-a-dog-the-out-command/ Decide what your house rules are for all the dogs and you be the one to enforce the rules instead of the dogs. Things like: no aggression, no pushiness, no stealing toys, no stealing food, no being possessive of people or things, no keeping another dog away from an area or person, or any other unwanted behavior - if one dog is causing a problem you be the one to enforce the rules so that the dogs are NOT working it out themselves. For example, if pup comes over to your older dog when he is trying to sleep, tell pup Out. If he obeys, praise and reward him. If he disobeys, stand in front of your older dog, blocking the pup from getting to him, and walk toward pup calmly but firmly until pup leaves the area and stops trying to go back to your older dog. If your older dog growls at or gets too rough with your pup, make your older dog leave the room while also disciplining pup if needed. Be vigilant and take the pressure off of the dogs - you want them to learn to look to you when there is a problem, and the dogs to learn respect for each other because you have taught it to them and not because they have had to use aggression, roughness, or bullying. If you want pup to be free but don't want to chase after him while you are home, you can also clip him to yourself using a six-foot leash, so that he has to stay near you and not wander near your other dog...and tell your older dog Out if he tries to antagonize puppy. Whenever puppy enters the room, give your older dog a treat while pup is not looking. Whenever he is calm, relaxed or tolerant of Huck also give him a treat. Try not to let Huck see you rewarding him though so that puppy doesn’t run over and overwhelm him or cause food aggression. Teach puppy and older dog Place - especially your older dog, and have them practice just staying on place when things need to be calmer. If either dog gets too wound up, send them to their crate, exercise pen, or place to calm down with a food stuffed chew toy - puppies especially will tend to get really crazy when over-tired, and need a chance to wind down and rest. Older dogs are more likely to become aggressive when highly aroused instead of calm. Always moderate their play at this stage and interrupt the play and let everyone calm down when things start to get overwhelming for either dog, one starts to bully or act scared, or they are getting highly aroused - When pup is a bit older wrestling, play growls, and running is normal, but watch for the energy going up and going and the dogs getting rougher in their play - give breaks when the energy starts to climb and get less gentle. You can practice Jazz Up Settle down at other times to work on impulse control....Get one of the dogs excited when they are by themselves, freeze and give a command, then stay frozen and wait for pup to obey. As soon as pup calms down enough to obey, give a treat, tell them Okay and "Go Play', then resume playing again....Practice this with less excitement at first and work up to more excitement before giving the command as they improve and can get themselves under control right away...Expect it to take a few minutes for them to calm down enough to obey at first. For the interactions with the cats practice similar things....Supervision around them, Out when they are bothering them, gentle corrections for chasing, staring, stalking, pestering, ect...Rewards for calmness and tolerance around them. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

Add a comment to Huck's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Zoey
Siberian Husky
1 Year
2 found helpful
Question
2 found helpful
Zoey
Siberian Husky
1 Year

My Siberian husky is being so good she just won’t stop focusing on the kids and we have recently just got the kitten is only about five weeks old so I am so scared that my dog will bite the cat and trying to play and hurt her I don’t know what to do I have put them both in separate rooms that one of them out every couple hours switch it up and my dog is just so focused on the cat that I have no idea what to do and I am terrified

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello Sabrina, I suggest purchasing a tall sturdy baby gate that can be bolted into the doorway. Make sure the slats are small enough that the kitten cannot fit through. While you are there to supervise, let the animals get used to seeing each other through the baby gate, but make sure that it is tall enough that your Husky cannot jump over it, or use two baby gates to block the doorway completely. Whenever your Husky ignores the kitten or acts calm around the kitten, give him treats or pieces of his own kibble. The goal is to do this often enough that the kitten becomes boring, and he learns from you to be calm. Right now the kitten is new and exciting and Zoey does not know that it is a part of the family. When Zoey can ignore the kitten through the baby gate, after at least two weeks, then purchase a soft silicone basket muzzle for Zoey. Introduce the muzzle to Zoey with lots of treats very gradually, until she is comfortable wearing it. While Zoey is on a leash, let the animals very carefully interact. I suggest recruiting an additional person to help protect the kitten while you handle Zoey. Praise and reward Zoey for being nice to the kitten, ignoring the kitten, or being calm around the kitten. Correct roughness gently but firmly also. Use a silicone basket muzzle for training so that Zoey will be more comfortable wearing it and be able to open her mouth inside the muzzle. This will also let you pass her small treats or a straw dipped in soft cheese, peanut butter, or liver paste, through the muzzle's holes to reward her good behavior around the kitten. If she get to the point where she can calmly coexist with the kitten, then you can give her more freedom on the leash, but wait to take the muzzle off until all attempts at biting the kitten are gone. If you feel overwhelmed or things are not going well after a couple of weeks, then look into hiring a private trainer who has experience dealing with this and is well respected. Find someone who will come to your home and evaluate the animals together in person. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

Add a comment to Zoey's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Kimo
Shepsky
3 Years
1 found helpful
Question
1 found helpful
Kimo
Shepsky
3 Years

My dog is about 3 years old he knows the commands Sit Stay and Leave it. He is just so excited that he ignores me. He also has a bad habit of marking the house. I am hoping that once he gets fixed the problems will decrease. On top of this now we have a cat who is a bit scared of our dog for good reason. The dog is never aggresive but he wants to chew lick and play with the cat. I'm not sure how to increase his self control or if maybe I should keep training him and hope he'll calm down when he gets fixed. Any advice or tips would be greatly appreciated.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello Amanda, The neutering will likely help some with the marking but I also suggest having him wear a belly band, which is a sling that goes around a dog's waist. You place an absorbent pad in the belly band to catch urine. Dogs mark to leave their scent. A belly band catches the scented urine so that a dog's marking attempts are unsuccessful. Every time that he marks he essentially is rewarded by being able to spread his scent, which makes efforts to stop him difficult. A belly band helps with consistency and is often used by rescue groups for male dogs in dog foster homes. Also, purchase a cleaner that contains enzymes. Look on the bottle. It should say enzyme or enzymatic somewhere. Only enzymes completely break down poop and pee. Any remaining scent (which a dog's sensitive dog can smell) will just encourage the dog to pee in the same spot again. The odor from previous markings needs to be gotten rid of thoroughly. Neutering should break the strong desire to mark and make training easier, but since he has developed a habit of marking now it will probably also require training to get him to stop the habit. For the over-excitement don't just depend on the neutering. It can help but neutering alone fixes very few behavior issues. It tends to make the dog easier to teach and less intense, but once the dog has learned a bad behavior you are still going to have to break that. The neutering will just make it easier to deal with, but won't fix it on it's own. Check out the videos and articles linked below for some good exercises to work on to increase his self-control and focus on you in general. At first, expect many of these exercises to be hard for him. Start slow, be patient, and work at it. Impulse control is a skill that he needs to practice often for it to improve, but it should improve with work. Age will also help a lot, but age alone won't break bad habits, it just calms the dog down a bit - but a calmer doing something you don't want is still a dog doing something you don't want, even if its not quite as bad as before. Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo Crate manners: https://thegooddog.net/training-videos/free-how-to-training-videos/learn-to-train-the-good-dog-way-the-crate/ Thresholds: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_-w28C2g68M Heel article - The turns method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-poodle-to-heel Heel Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OTiKVc4ZZWo If you encounter any aggression toward you, hire a professional to help you right away. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

Already on day 1 I see a big difference from those training videos. Me and my mom are going to purchase that belt you reccomended as well but so far hes doing great with the lessons and obedience. Thank you so much! For the first time training him isnt exhausting. I will make sure to keep following along with what you sent me :))

Add a comment to Kimo's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Khaleesi
Siberian Husky
3 Months
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Khaleesi
Siberian Husky
3 Months

My girlfriend has a husky and I have a cat. Her mother encouraged the dog to chase stray cats from the yard so now she is very hostile towards cats. I've been researching for weeks and it doesn't look like there's much chance at fixing it. I'm hoping we can do something because both are beloved pets it will be heart breaking to give up one of them.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello Logan, I highly suggest hiring a trainer who can work with teaching her self-control, calmness, and counter conditioning (which means associating the cat with good things). Because she is so young there is a chance of breaking her of it but probably only if training is started now and if you can find a trainer who can help you teach her all of those things: 1. Calmness 2. Self-control (like staying in Place command or Down Stay even when the cat is around) 3. Counter Conditioning - which means associating the presence of the cat with good things so that she looks forward to its appearance but is taught to go to a bed or stay calm instead of chase it away, and is rewarded for her calmness and corrected for any attempts to chase. This will all need to be practiced very frequently and especially at the age she is right now instead of waiting to begin training. She is right at the edge of a key socialization period developmentally - that relates to how she will later view and react to things in the world around her. Your window is slowly closing potentially. There is no guarantee that training will be successful, but started soon and with a lot of work you might be able to salvage her relationship with at least your own cat - she might still feel hostile towards other cats but she may learn to accept your cat as part of the family and off limits for chasing. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

Add a comment to Khaleesi's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Kodi
Husky
2 Years
1 found helpful
Question
1 found helpful
Kodi
Husky
2 Years

Okay--doozie for you. We recently took in a husky for some friends who are moving to Guam and cannot take their dogs with them. He is great and well trained and we absolutely love him. We also have a two year old cat, who we absolutely love. We anticipated some tensions and tried to follow the steps that we read online to try to properly orient them. Scent swapping, screened orientation and finally face to face. On the morning of their first face to face things were going well, both seemed calm--which was a little strange and i let them approach eachother while holding the dogs collar and petting the cats head once they got face to face they sniffed eachother slightly and then just when I thought they were going to warm up to eachother and round the corner the dog bit the cats head....which was needless to say terrifying. The bite was just a "test bite" I believe, he didn't hurt her at all but it scared me a lot and now I'm not sure how to proceed. We bought a heavy duty muzzle so that if we try to introduce them again in the future it can't end in disaster. We have a shock collar that we have been hesitant to use because we've heard of horror stories with them but we're kind of at a loss. It has only been four weeks and I understand that they are going to need a lot longer after reading this article. When we aren't trying to get them some exposure to eachother we keep the cat locked in a seperate room. If the cat is out we keep the dog on a leash. Please let me know what you think our best course of action. Oh also, the cat is pretty aggressive too, she will kind of go after him sometimes--not necessarily trying to scratch him but kind of getting in his face like its her territory. For some reason they aren't recognizing that A.) the dog can really hurt the cat and B.) the cat can do some damage to the dog (she has scratched him before). Thanks in advance for any help, we desperately need it!!!

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello Matthew, 1. The muzzle is a good tool for you guys. 2. It does sound like there could be potential for things to go alright since they were calm at first and the bite was controlled - he could have killed her instantly if predatory, but there are definitely careful things that need to happen. Honestly I would love for you to find a trainer who has some experience with cats also. The cats behavior has pros and cons...Its good that she doesn't run and encourage chase behavior, but her attacking him can create fear aggression in the dog and make them hate each other - like two dogs that fight. You want to teach the cat to be tolerant too, and correct the cat for initiating fights (not defending herself but the sneak attacks and starting things), and to reward the cat for being tolerant of the dog. Cats are harder to train than dogs but can be trained - they generally have less desire to please though so you have to rely heavily on rewards and things they consider unpleasant and not things like praise and wanting to please. I suggest teaching the dog Place command, anchoring an strong eyehook into the wall near his Place bed and having a loose leash on him while he stays on Place - loose so that his obedience is what keeps him there and there is not extra tension, but a leash for safety reasons in case he bolts. You can practice having the animals in the same room while he is on Place and rewarding both for tolerance and correcting for unwanted behavior like staring intently, stalking, taunting, stiffening, growling, lunging, ect...The cat will do some of those behaviors and the dog some of them probably. The e-collar is a fantastic tool but it has to be used right and you need to only use a high quality one for this. You want to use working level e-collar training, which means the lowest level the dog responds to/feels when the cat isn't around, and have the corrections be way to enforce your dog disobeying a command they know well, like Leave It, Place, Watch Me, ect...so that the dog is being disciplined for disobedience and not just corrected whenever the cat appears - which makes things worse. The e-collar allows you to be extremely consistent with your rules if used correctly, but should be combined with rewards for being tolerant and calm - which the dog should learn how to be if the e-collar is used right. The purpose of punishment is to decrease an unwanted behavior enough so that you have the opportunity to reward the correct, calmer behavior instead. It interrupts the dog's intense state of mind just so that you can get the dog in a better state of mind for learning something good instead - like being calm and staying on place. Honestly, finding someone to help you who views e-collars with the same type of mentality as the person from the video linked below is what you need - he specializes in dealing with livestock chasing behavior and understands prey drive and animal to animal interactions well, and uses a lot of positive reinforcement in his training also. E-collar come training overview: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rtJxSXu4rfs Place command: https://thegooddog.net/training-videos/free-how-to-training-videos/learn-to-train-the-good-dog-way-place-command-the-good-dog-training-tips/ Desensitizing a dog and cat: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ojIQmMuOwns Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

Awesome, wow thank you so much for providing us with all of this information! We'll impliment and let you know how it goes :)

Add a comment to Kodi's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Blue
Siberian Husky
1 Year
1 found helpful
Question
1 found helpful
Blue
Siberian Husky
1 Year

We recently adopted a one year old husky named Blue from a local animal shelter. They told us his previous owners had two cats. Anyway, we have three cats of our own and when we brought Blue home he instantly chased two of them and became fixated almost frenzied and wont respond well to verbal commands. Later on we tried introducing one of our cats to him and Blue lunged at him and nipped kinda hard at the cats back. I was reading about prey drive and basically just am wondering if there's anything we can do to break him of his fixation on the cats. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello Matt, Check out the video linked below: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_MLJV5PBh7Y Since he has a history of getting along with a couple of cats, there is a chance he can be trained to leave your cats alone. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

Add a comment to Blue's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Melody
Husky
5 Years
1 found helpful
Question
1 found helpful
Melody
Husky
5 Years

Hello,
We are working on introducing our husky to our new kitten. The dog seems to just be curious but we got them to the point they can be in the same room together. Things seemed to be going okay until my dog went and picked up the kitten. I yelled no and she immediately dropped her but now it’s seems the kitten is terrified. I did check to make sure the kitten was okay and she was not injured. How do I approach this so I can get them to get along? The kitten would hiss when the dog was close but now she is just hiding when she hears the dog. What do I do?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello Kristin, For the dog, check out the videos linked below: Mild cat issue - teaching impulse control: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IWF2Ohik8iM Moderate cat issue - teaching impulse control using corrections and rewards: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9dPIC3Jtn0E Severe cat issue: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_MLJV5PBh7Y More e-collar work with cats with the same dog: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v8lkbX0dhT0 For the kitten, work on associating the presence of the dog with something the kitten likes to help the kitten feel more comfortable around the dog again - liver paste, toys and play, ect... You don't necessarily want to teach the cat to approach the dog though - that could taunt the dog and make it harder for pup to stay calm. You just want the kitten to feel less anxious while in the same room with pup - especially when you are there too to keep the kitty safe. Work on impulse control in general with pup, by teaching things that increase impulse control and calmness - such as a long, Place command around lots of distractions. Practicing the command until you get to the point where pup will stay on Place while you are working with the kitten in the same room. You can also back tie pup while they are on place - connecting a long leash attached to pup to something near the Place just in case pup were to try to get off Place before you could intervene. This keeps kitty safe while practicing and reinforces to pup that they can't get off the Place. The leash should be long enough that pup doesn't feel the leash while they are obediently staying on the Place because it has some slack in the leash. Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo Below are some other commands in general you can practice to help pup develop better impulse skill/self-control - impulse control takes practice for a dog to gain the ability to control herself. Crate manners: https://thegooddog.net/training-videos/free-how-to-training-videos/learn-to-train-the-good-dog-way-the-crate/ Thresholds: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_-w28C2g68M Heel article - The turns method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-poodle-to-heel Heel Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OTiKVc4ZZWo Down-Stay: https://www.thelabradorsite.com/train-your-labrador-to-lie-down-and-stay/ Leave It: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bite Out - which means leave the room: https://www.petful.com/behaviors/how-to-teach-a-dog-the-out-command/ The fact that she dropped the kitten when you told her to is a good sign that this is something you can likely make progress with with the right training. Don't trust the animals together without you in the room even when things seem to be going well, for a long time though just in case - pup can be crated when you are gone, and when you aren't there to supervise and train, the animals should be kept apart all the time right now. If you feel overwhelmed, things get worse, or you aren't seeing improvement, hire professional help from someone who has experience in this area and comes well recommended by their previous clients who dealt with behavior issues (not just obedience commands - obedience is good but a bit different. You want a trainer who is experienced with behavior issues AND obedience commands). Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

Thank you for all the advice!! I will give this a try!

Add a comment to Melody's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Balto
Husky
8 Months
1 found helpful
Question
1 found helpful
Balto
Husky
8 Months

i recently got new pets. never before had i had pets. i got a pretty little baby girl kitten and a 8 month old husky. Im just worried how to introduce them to each other, she hisses alot and is always scared to have him close. he is kind of calm, he listens at times but you can tell he wants to get close to her, and she hisses alot when hes close and he starts whining like he wants her close to him. im just worried that they wont like each other, or that maybe she'll be traumatized by him.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello Erika, First, I am not a cat trainer - but with that said, I would probably suggest using something like real chicken, cat treats, or a bit of fish to reward your cat any time she is calm while you dog is in the room. For pup, check out the videos linked below. Be very careful with the animals together. Pup's interest may be prey drive toward the kitten so be sure to take precautions like a crate, strong baby gate, leash or basket muzzle. When you leave the house or can't supervise the animals, crate both animals in locked crates in separate rooms for safety. Mild cat issue - teaching impulse control: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IWF2Ohik8iM Moderate cat issue - teaching impulse control using corrections and rewards: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9dPIC3Jtn0E Work on impulse control in general with pup, by teaching things that increase impulse control and calmness - such as a long, Place command around lots of distractions. Practicing the command until you get to the point where pup will stay on Place while you are working with the kitten in the same room. You can also back tie pup while they are on place - connecting a long leash attached to pup to something near the Place just in case pup were to try to get off Place before you could intervene. This keeps kitty safe while practicing and reinforces to pup that they can't get off the Place. The leash should be long enough that pup doesn't feel the leash while they are obediently staying on the Place because it has some slack in the leash. Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo Below are some other commands in general you can practice to help pup develop better impulse skill/self-control - impulse control takes practice for a dog to gain the ability to control herself. Crate manners: https://thegooddog.net/training-videos/free-how-to-training-videos/learn-to-train-the-good-dog-way-the-crate/ Thresholds: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_-w28C2g68M Heel article - The turns method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-poodle-to-heel Heel Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OTiKVc4ZZWo Down-Stay: https://www.thelabradorsite.com/train-your-labrador-to-lie-down-and-stay/ Leave It: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bite Out - which means leave the room: https://www.petful.com/behaviors/how-to-teach-a-dog-the-out-command/ Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

another question, he also likes to bite alot especially when we are playing, i dont mind it but im concerned he'll try to play like that too with the kitty or that maybe he's being too rough. is it ok for him to wanna be playfully biting?

Add a comment to Balto's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Balto
Siberian Husky
8 Months
1 found helpful
Question
1 found helpful
Balto
Siberian Husky
8 Months

Balto is a very active dog very playful, he likes to jump on people he sees everywhere and when he interacts he bites, not hard but playful but then he starts getting rough and bites hard. and my sister has a baby and for some reason he just wanted to jump on it and bite like he wanted to play fight same with the kitty i have, im concerned on this and i wonder why hes like that and how can i correct this behavior because he can be a little rough and he goes totally CRAZY when we dont let him near the baby or kitty. Also During the day i keep him in the balcony of my apt. so hes not inside destroying stuff or do his business inside but i want to stop that because i dont want to get him used to pooping on the balcony and crate train him but is it ok if i leave him in the crate all day while i am at work? and also get him train to potty outside. I've been trying to train him and i give him treats and he listens very well but when i try to train without them he doesnt really listen. should i be constantly rewarding him like that until he does listen to me?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello Erika, Check out the article linked below on rude behavior and jumping: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EcwvUOf5oOg I suggest working on all of the following commands with pup to help with overall attitude, rude behavior, learning calmness, him learning self-control, and helping you manage his behavior better. With the behaviors you are dealing with, first work on "Out" - which means leave the area, "Leave It", "Place", and "Crate Manners". I do highly suggest crate training. An 8 month old pup once crate trained can typically hold their bladder for up to eight hours in a crate when needed if they potty right before being crated. I would practice crate training for 1-2 hours to start with in the evenings and weekend when you are home before jumping into a long day of crating. Surprise method for introducing the crate - also work on the Crate Manners training linked further down also: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate When first teaching a command and socializing you will need to use a lot of treats. Once pup has learned a command it's time to phase the treats out unless you are adding more difficulty again - like practicing in the park instead of home for the first time. When pup disobeys a command that you know that they know, and you are confident he heard you and is ignoring it, it's time to enforce that command. That can be done by withholding something pup wants until he obeys, keeping a drag leash on pup and using leash pressure to enforce the command or reel pup in for a come. It can also be done by waiting pup out, such as when you tell pup to sit while out walking and pup doesn't, so you stand still with the leash tight enough that pup has to stay next to you until pup gets bored and sits. Finally, you can apply a fair correction while telling pup "Ah Ah" while pup is being disobedient - pup has to know what he was supposed to be doing first though, and the "Ah Ah" becomes a verbal cue not to do something so that you can eventually say "Ah Ah" and need less corrections. Follow through doesn't have to be super harsh just very consistent, calm and firm - so pup sees that when you say something you mean it the first time. This takes a lot of patience to do so don't give up learning how to train as you are improving as a trainer also. Consistency, calmness, and a matter-of-fact attitude tends to be the most effective with behavior issues. Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo Crate manners: https://thegooddog.net/training-videos/free-how-to-training-videos/learn-to-train-the-good-dog-way-the-crate/ Out command: https://www.petful.com/behaviors/how-to-teach-a-dog-the-out-command/ Thresholds: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_-w28C2g68M Heel article - The turns method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-poodle-to-heel Heel Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OTiKVc4ZZWo Working and Consistency methods: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-doberman-to-listen-to-you Leave It method for leave it command: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bite Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

Add a comment to Balto's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Gunther
Lab Husky mix
13 Weeks
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Gunther
Lab Husky mix
13 Weeks

Hi, we are getting a new puppy this weekend who is a husky lab mix (dad was a husky, mom a black lab). He is 13 weeks old. We also have a 3 year old cat with a lot of personality. We really want this to be a good experience for both the cat and dog. Do you think that being a mix will effect predatory instinct? Or should we plan to train like a full husky?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello Sarah, It could effect predatory history, but many labs are also prey driven too, so I would go ahead and plan to train as if the instinct is stronger, like with a Husky. Many of the things in the article are good for most other breeds too. Once you have pup, you should have a better idea as he grows how prey driven he is. Prey drive can also vary between individual dogs, even with a breed that is often prey driven, it's just not the norm for it to be lower with a Husky. Enjoy the new puppy! The fact that he is young and you are starting training early will help. Also, check out the free pdf e-book AFTER You Get Your Puppy for general information on puppy training and getting started, to add to what you are already doing with the cat. Glad to see that you are doing research now. Keep up the good work! He is lucky to have you. E-book download link: www.lifedogtraining.com/freedownloads Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

Add a comment to Gunther's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Crook
Siberian Husky
9 Months
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Crook
Siberian Husky
9 Months

I need serious help. I adopt a husky from a terrible situation. The owner had no care for him as they had no knowledge of the breed. He is 9 months old and is almost developed. I have already broke about 75% of his bad habits. I have done my research in huskies as they’re my favorite breed, but this boy attacks my cats like nothing. He has never had a face to face encounter but he does fixate and obsess over them. He also try’s to lunge at them. I’m not putting him into the shelter system, he gets along with my other husky and my other mix breed. He has his forever home, but we need to get the cat thing under control before anything progresses.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello Kennedy, I suggest hiring a professional trainer who has experience in this area to help you implement the following training to teach him to avoid the cats. Mild cat issue - teaching impulse control: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IWF2Ohik8iM Moderate cat issue - teaching impulse control using corrections and rewards: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9dPIC3Jtn0E Severe cat issue: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_MLJV5PBh7Y More e-collar work with cats with the same dog: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v8lkbX0dhT0 Work on impulse control in general with pup, by teaching things that increase impulse control and calmness - such as a long, Place command around lots of distractions. Practicing the command until you get to the point where pup will stay on Place while you are working with the kitten in the same room. You can also back tie pup while they are on place - connecting a long leash attached to pup to something near the Place just in case pup were to try to get off Place before you could intervene. This keeps kitty safe while practicing and reinforces to pup that they can't get off the Place. The leash should be long enough that pup doesn't feel the leash while they are obediently staying on the Place because it has some slack in the leash. Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo Below are some other commands in general you can practice to help pup develop better impulse skill/self-control - impulse control takes practice for a dog to gain the ability to control himself. Crate manners: https://thegooddog.net/training-videos/free-how-to-training-videos/learn-to-train-the-good-dog-way-the-crate/ Thresholds: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_-w28C2g68M Heel article - The turns method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-poodle-to-heel Heel Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OTiKVc4ZZWo Down-Stay: https://www.thelabradorsite.com/train-your-labrador-to-lie-down-and-stay/ Leave It: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bite Out - which means leave the room: https://www.petful.com/behaviors/how-to-teach-a-dog-the-out-command/ Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

Add a comment to Crook's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Zeus
Siberian Husky
13 Weeks
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Zeus
Siberian Husky
13 Weeks

I have two cats and this is the first time my husband and I have ever had a puppy. I tried the stop spray that releases a hormone and makes a noise and it worked but I ran out of the whole can in one day. I recently moved the cats tower to a different room but I feel like no matter what, I cant get the puppy to stop chasing the cats

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello, First, know that this will take some times and consistency- that's normal, especially with a puppy who is still learning impulse control. I suggest crate training pup. Crate pup when you can't have him with you or need to leave, then tether pup to yourself with a hands free leash so that pup has to stay with you. This will allow you to correct, reward, and monitor puppy more easily, while also helping with other common puppy issues like destructive chewing and potty training. Keep a ziploc bag of small treats or puppy kibble in your pocket and whenever you catch pup lying down, ignoring the cat, or generally being calm when the cat is within sight - reward the random times of calmness around the cat (while pup is also tethered to you so can't get away with chasing). Some other great things to practice to build impulse control are leave it, Place, and heel. Each of those commands should make life with pup as an adult easier later for other reasons also, so there are multiple benefits to beginning the commands now for the cat issue. Practicing impulse control around a cat video: Mild cat issue - teaching impulse control: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IWF2Ohik8iM Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo Heel article - The turns method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-poodle-to-heel Leave It: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bite Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

Add a comment to Zeus's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Zeus
Siberian Husky
13 Weeks
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Zeus
Siberian Husky
13 Weeks

I have two cats and this is the first time my husband and I have ever had a puppy. I tried the stop spray that releases a hormone and makes a noise and it worked but I ran out of the whole can in one day. I recently moved the cats tower to a different room but I feel like no matter what, I cant get the puppy to stop chasing the cats

Darlene Stott
Darlene Stott
Dog Trainer and Groomer
104 Dog owners recommended

Zeus is a cute little guy and I thank you for the question. First things first, Huskies can have a natural prey drive for small animals including cats so please be patient and persistent. Don't leave Zeus alone with the cats and always make sure that even when you are home, the cats have a safe and secure place to escape to. For now (and whenever you are not home), have a barrier between your Husky and the cats. I would ask the vet about Zeus' vaccines and see when he is ready to start obedience training, because no matter what methods you use to try and make him cat-friendly, if he does not know his commands (like stay and leave it) he'll never learn to obey around the cats. Keep a leash on Zeus when you do try short introduction sessions. Exercise Zeus a lot (this is a very energetic breed used to work and using the brain) both mentally and physically. I see that you give Zeus lots of toys - please continue to do so. If after basic and advanced positive reinforcement obedience classes Zeus is still acting as if your cat is prey, I suggest a professional trainer in your area for hands on help. Good luck!

Add a comment to Zeus's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Shiro
Siberian Husky
13 Weeks
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Shiro
Siberian Husky
13 Weeks

Hello ! We got a new puppy two weeks ago and I have a 1 year old cat. Shiro is really calm but sometimes he gets a little too excited (almost aggressive with food) and doesnt listen to me or my family so we started with basic training. I think he’s doing well but there are sometimes where he chase the cat or barks at him and doesn’t listen to us. I wanted an advice about what can I do ? Or if I should change some things ??

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello Alessandra, Check out the videos linked below for some examples of some good commands to practice around the cat to increase pup's self control and respect in that situation - such as Place and Heel with the cat as a distraction. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IWF2Ohik8iM https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9dPIC3Jtn0E Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O75dyWITP1s Heel: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-poodle-to-heel Know that if you just began training, it does take practice for a dog to develop self-control. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

Add a comment to Shiro's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Thor
Husky
1 Year
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Thor
Husky
1 Year

So i have a Husky, Thor, he is 1. we got him right at 8 Weeks old. he does great with children and small animals and even did great with my sisters cat. We recently got a cat, we rescued her she is 1 1/2 years old. she grew up with dogs after her first litter at 5 months. My question is, what is the best way to introduce them? I try to keep them seperate right now so she can adjust to the new house. I switch them off, so i'll have Thor in a cage in the living room and Hela (our cat) will be our or i'll have Hela in out bedroom and Thor will be out, just so they can get use to the other smell and while she is out they can get use to their presence.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello Brianna, What you are doing so far with smells and space is a good start. Start teaching pup Place before introducing them. Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O75dyWITP1s Once pup is doing well, introduce the cat from across the room with another person managing the cat, while pup is back tied to something secure while on Place. Practice Place with the leash loose enough that pup won't feel it tug unless they try to leave Place, and commands like Watch Me, Down, Sit, ect... Reward pup for calm responses, ignoring the cat, and/or obeying you. Once pup can calmly co-exist in the same room with the cat while on Place, practice pup heeling around the room with you and rewarding pup for staying calm, focusing on you, and obeying. Eventually you can let the animals sniff for no longer than 3 second intervals, rewarding good responses, interrupting any fixating on the cat or tensing up around the cat. You want to encourage manners, calmness, low arousal, and focus on you around the cat from the get go. With good boundaries in place and a calm mindset, you can gradually relax things when you are certain both animals are completely comfortable and safe around each other. When you aren't actively training and supervising, keep them separate right now for safety reasons, but do slowly increase how often and how long you practice things like Place with the animals around each other. Check out the videos linked below for examples of obedience practice and desensitization around a cat. Mild cat issue - teaching impulse control: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IWF2Ohik8iM Moderate cat issue - teaching impulse control using corrections and rewards: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9dPIC3Jtn0E If pup appears to be prey driven around the cat, reach out immediately for help because you will likely need additional safety measures and training methods for that level. Since pup has done well with small animals in the past, I don't expect them to have a huge prey drive though, but always be on the look out for it with any dog and new cat relationship, just in case. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

Add a comment to Thor's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Luna
Siberian Husky
3 Years
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Luna
Siberian Husky
3 Years

My family just adopted the dog,but we have had cats for years. The dog keeps chasing the cats or even snapping at them. The cats are very stressed and don't have a very safe place to hide. I am afraid for the cats safty but my family members refuse to believe there is any danger for them as the dog is "only playing".

Darlene Stott
Darlene Stott
Dog Trainer and Groomer
104 Dog owners recommended

Hello, I agree with you and feel bad that the cats do not have a safe haven. Can you possibly buy a baby gate and have the cats safely on the other side in your room perhaps? Also, buy a cat tree that is quite high and carpeted to give them a safe space to climb. You can try some training methods, but I will say that Huskies are often known to have a prey drive that is strong and not easily changed. Try the Beef Up Basic Training Method: https://wagwalking.com/training/get-along-with-cats. The Desensitize Method and the Alternative Behavior Method are also options: https://wagwalking.com/training/not-kill-cats. You will need the agreement of the rest of the household - it will help - so you can train Luna to leave the cats alone. Good luck!

Add a comment to Luna's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Storm
Siberian Husky
1 Year
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Storm
Siberian Husky
1 Year

Introducing her to the kitten

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello Camera, Check out the video linked below. Until you know how reliable pup is, I would also tether pup to something secure with a long enough leash that they won't feel the tension of the leash unless they try to get off the place bed - but as an added safety in case they lunged for the cat while practicing the training. Start by teaching pup Place without the cat around first though. Mild cat issue - teaching impulse control: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IWF2Ohik8iM Moderate cat issue - teaching impulse control using corrections and rewards: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9dPIC3Jtn0E Place command: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O75dyWITP1s Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

Add a comment to Storm's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Hero
Alaskan Malamute
5 Years
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Hero
Alaskan Malamute
5 Years

I am wanting to move in with someone that owns about 4-5 cats and I have a husky (not quite sure whether he’s a malamute or Siberian)... he has chased cats before but generally he’s quite a gentle dog. How should I go about training him to get along with the cats?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello Phoebe, How you approach this will generally depend on whether pup has a strong prey drive toward the cats, or just a general curiosity and excitement. If pup has a stronger prey drive or you feel the cats are in danger working on this on your own, I do suggest hiring a trainer who has experience with this area, to help you implement and adjust the training to pup in person. Notice the use of leashes and back tie's to prevent bolting toward the cats with dogs who are first learning. Mild cat issue - teaching impulse control: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IWF2Ohik8iM Moderate cat issue - teaching impulse control using corrections and rewards: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9dPIC3Jtn0E Severe cat issue: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_MLJV5PBh7Y More e-collar work with cats with the same dog: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v8lkbX0dhT0 Work on impulse control in general with pup, by teaching things that increase impulse control and calmness - such as a long Place command around lots of distractions. Practicing the command until you get to the point where pup will stay on Place while you are working with the cats in the same room. You can also back tie pup while they are on place - connecting a long leash attached to pup to something near the Place just in case pup were to try to get off Place before you could intervene. This keeps kitty safe while practicing and reinforces to pup that they can't get off the Place. The leash should be long enough that pup doesn't feel the leash while they are obediently staying on the Place because it has some slack in the leash. Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo Below are some other commands in general you can practice to help pup develop better impulse skill/self-control - impulse control takes practice for a dog to gain the ability to control himself. Crate manners: https://thegooddog.net/training-videos/free-how-to-training-videos/learn-to-train-the-good-dog-way-the-crate/ Thresholds: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_-w28C2g68M Heel article - The turns method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-poodle-to-heel Down-Stay: https://www.thelabradorsite.com/train-your-labrador-to-lie-down-and-stay/ Leave It: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bite Out - which means leave the room: https://www.petful.com/behaviors/how-to-teach-a-dog-the-out-command/ Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

Add a comment to Hero's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Nebula
Siberian Husky
3 Years
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Nebula
Siberian Husky
3 Years

What’re some good ways to introduce a female rescue husky that use to be a stray to my other two dogs she’s the only one that seems to have aggression towards them

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
225 Dog owners recommended

Your best bet in this situation is to go with a method to desensitize her to the cats. Nebula needs to learn that the cats are just a normal part of the household. So we need to teach her to become less reactive by the cats. If you are up for this, it is going to take about a month of consistent practice before you see results. You will want to start out by teaching him "leave it". Leave is great for anything you want your dog to leave alone. Instructions on leave it will be at the end of this response. After about a week or so of working on the command, you can start taking him around the cats while on leash. Any time he even looks at a cat, you give the command leave it. Once he breaks his attention away from the cats, you reward him with a treat. Ideally, you want to him to be sitting and looking at you. But in the beginning stages, as long as he isn't focused on the cat, you can reward him. You will literally practice this over and over, while moving closer to the cats until he is no longer interested in the cats. While this method takes a while, it is the best in relaying the messages across to your dog. The cats need to be left alone! Here are the steps for "leave it" Teaching a dog 'leave it' Teaching “leave it” is not difficult. Begin the lessons inside your home or in an area with very few distractions. Here are the steps for teaching “leave it”: Make sure you have two different types of treats. One type can be fairly boring to the dog, but the other type should be a high-value treat that he finds pretty delicious. You will also want to make sure that the treats are broken up into pea-sized pieces so it won’t take him too long to eat them. Put one type of treat in each hand. If you like to train with a clicker as your marker, you can also hold a clicker in the same hand that holds the high-value treat. Then, place both of your hands behind your back. Make a fist with the hand that is holding the treat of lower value and present your fist to your dog, letting him sniff. Say “leave it” and wait until he finishes sniffing your fist. As soon as your dog is done sniffing, you can either click with the clicker or say “yes.” Then offer him the higher-value treat in your other hand. Repeat until your dog immediately stops sniffing your hand when you say “leave it.” When you say “leave it” and he stops sniffing right away, leash your dog and then toss a low-value treat outside of his reach. Wait until he stops sniffing and pulling toward the treat. As soon as he does, either say “yes” or click and then give him a high-value treat from your hand. Practice this exercise a number of times. Over time, by practicing “leave it,” your dog should stop pulling as soon as you give the cue. When rewarding him with a treat, make sure that it is something good, not plain old kibble. By doing so, you are teaching him that asking him to leave some food doesn’t mean he won’t get anything, but that in fact he might get something even more delicious. When your dog is reliably responding to the cue, you can teach him that “leave it” can apply to other things as well, not just food on the floor. Repeat the exercise with five different items that are fairly boring to your dog. After using five different “boring” items, start using slightly more exciting items. You know your dog, so you alone know what items he would consider more interesting, but don’t jump to high-value items right away. To increase his chances of success at learning the cue, you want to work up to high-value items gradually. If Kleenex or a piece of plastic, for instance, would attract your dog on a walk, don’t start with those. Choose the items based on your ultimate goal: Anytime you say “leave it,” you want to be confident that your dog will indeed leave whatever you are asking him to leave. . The reward he receives when he leaves an item can change as well. If your dog has a favorite toy, squeak it and play for a moment when he comes running to you after leaving the other item of interest. Most dogs love interacting with us, so a moment of praise or play with a toy can be just as effective as a treat. Keep it fun Even though you’re practicing “leave it” as a way to keep your dog safe, you want him to see it as a fun game you play. When your dog is proficient at the game in your home, start practicing in a variety of locations with more distractions.

Add a comment to Nebula's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Ember and izzy
Husky “mixed “ breed
16 Months
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Ember and izzy
Husky “mixed “ breed
16 Months

I just found a stray kitten underneath my house lastnight due to the shelter here being full of cats and kittens she advised me to keep the kitten but ember and isabelle are not being very friendly with her after meeting them with the leashes on meeting her they acted like she was something to eat with her being a stray and not letting me hold her very well yet what is my best option for us to keep her but to show ember and izzy that she is not prey thank you

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello Melissa, Check out the videos linked below - have pups on leash tethered to something secure, practicing one dog at a time when you do this. Mild cat issue - teaching impulse control: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IWF2Ohik8iM Moderate cat issue - teaching impulse control using corrections and rewards: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9dPIC3Jtn0E Severe cat issue: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_MLJV5PBh7Y More e-collar work with cats with the same dog: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v8lkbX0dhT0 Work on impulse control in general with pup, by teaching things that increase impulse control and calmness - such as a long, Place command around lots of distractions. Practicing the command until you get to the point where pup will stay on Place while you are working with the kitten in the same room. You can also back tie pup while they are on place - connecting a long leash attached to pup to something near the Place just in case pup were to try to get off Place before you could intervene. This keeps kitty safe while practicing and reinforces to pup that they can't get off the Place. The leash should be long enough that pup doesn't feel the leash while they are obediently staying on the Place because it has some slack in the leash. Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo Below are some other commands in general you can practice to help pup develop better impulse skill/self-control - impulse control takes practice for a dog to gain the ability to control herself. Thresholds: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_-w28C2g68M Heel article - The turns method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-poodle-to-heel Down-Stay: https://www.thelabradorsite.com/train-your-labrador-to-lie-down-and-stay/ Leave It: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bite Out - which means leave the room: https://www.petful.com/behaviors/how-to-teach-a-dog-the-out-command/ If pups show any form of aggression toward you, you don't feel you can keep the kitten safe, or the prey drive is severe and requires the use of an e-collar, then I recommend hiring a professional trainer to help you with this in person - one who specializes in behavior issues like prey drive and aggression, comes well recommended by their clients, and uses both positive reinforcement and e-collar training on a working level - which is the lowest level a dog indicates they can feel the collar to make the training less harsh and more effective. Not all animal issues require the use of an e-collar, but a high prey drive will likely require it, and it has to be done with the right type of training that increases self-control and calmness, and not just correcting all the time. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

Add a comment to Ember and izzy's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Aspen
Husky
1 Year
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Aspen
Husky
1 Year

My dog has mauled one of my cats and killed it posssibly and is chasing and pulling fur out of my last cat

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello Kreena, For this issue, I highly suggest hiring a professional trainer who specializes in aggression, as well as keeping the animals separate at all times, except when training for this and having safety measures in place, like a back tie leash for pup. Check out the videos linked below. I recommend practicing this with the help of your trainer, who specializes in aggression and behavior issues. Pup likely has severe cat issues from your description. Mild cat issue - teaching impulse control: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IWF2Ohik8iM Moderate cat issue - teaching impulse control using corrections and rewards: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9dPIC3Jtn0E Severe cat issue: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_MLJV5PBh7Y More e-collar work with cats with the same dog: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v8lkbX0dhT0 Work on impulse control in general with pup, by teaching things that increase impulse control and calmness - such as a long, Place command around lots of distractions. Practicing the command until you get to the point where pup will stay on Place while you are working with the kitten in the same room. You can also back tie pup while they are on place - connecting a long leash attached to pup to something near the Place just in case pup were to try to get off Place before you could intervene. This keeps kitty safe while practicing and reinforces to pup that they can't get off the Place. The leash should be long enough that pup doesn't feel the leash while they are obediently staying on the Place because it has some slack in the leash. Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo Below are some other commands in general you can practice to help pup develop better impulse skill/self-control - impulse control takes practice for a dog to gain the ability to control herself. Thresholds: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_-w28C2g68M Heel article - The turns method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-poodle-to-heel Down-Stay: https://www.thelabradorsite.com/train-your-labrador-to-lie-down-and-stay/ Leave It: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bite Out - which means leave the room: https://www.petful.com/behaviors/how-to-teach-a-dog-the-out-command/ Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

Add a comment to Aspen's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Ayla
Husky
2 Years
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Ayla
Husky
2 Years

I just got a new seven week old kitten, my husky is obsessed with cats and anxious. The kitty is pretty explorative and fearless in some sense. Ayla, my dog, seems to love cats but cats do not love her probably because of her high energy and interest in them. Ayla has had one cat friend who didn’t mind her so much but that was only for a short weekend and ayla was everywhere where the cat was (again pretty obsessed with the cat). I’m hoping if I start them young and the more familiar ayla gets the less novel a cat will be and hopefully she will be less obsessed s I’ve never seen ayla hurt a cat or anything really. Oh course I will not leave them alone. But any more suggestions? Thank you

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello Samantha, I would work on teaching pup a Place and Heel command and practicing those commands around the kitten to teach self-control and boundaries. Mild cat issue - teaching impulse control: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IWF2Ohik8iM Place command: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O75dyWITP1s Heel- Turns method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-poodle-to-heel I would also teach pup some spatial commands like leave it and Out to help pup give the kitten space when needed. Out - which means leave the area: https://www.petful.com/behaviors/how-to-teach-a-dog-the-out-command/ Leave It method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bite Reward pup for being calm and ignoring the cat when in the same room by calmly placing a treat between pup's paws (to encourage lying down). Keep praise soft in this situation so that you don't make pup more excited. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

Add a comment to Ayla's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Max
Siberian Husky
5 Years
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Max
Siberian Husky
5 Years

I am attempting to acclimate my husky and my friends cat so that we can have them around each other while hanging out. My husky seems to have a high prey drive but will shy away from aggressive cats and ignore cats who are confident around dogs. My friends cat is confident and curious about him but when she tries to be playful he attempts to grab her with with his mouth. I corrected this behavior but am scared that he will hurt her as she is a very sweet animal and does not know to fear dogs. What can we do in this situation? Thank you.

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
225 Dog owners recommended

Your best bet in this situation is to go with a method to desensitize him to the cat. Max needs to learn that the cat is just a normal part of the environment. So we need to teach him to become less reactive by the cat. If you are up for this, it is going to take about a month of consistent practice before you see results. You will want to start out by teaching him "leave it". Leave is great for anything you want your dog to leave alone. Instructions on leave it will be at the end of this response. After about a week or so of working on the command, you can start taking him around the cats while on leash. Any time he even looks at a cat, you give the command leave it. Once he breaks his attention away from the cats, you reward him with a treat. Ideally, you want to him to be sitting and looking at you. But in the beginning stages, as long as he isn't focused on the cat, you can reward him. You will literally practice this over and over, while moving closer to the cats until he is no longer interested in the cats. While this method takes a while, it is the best in relaying the messages across to your dog. The cats need to be left alone! Here are the steps for "leave it" Teaching a dog 'leave it' Teaching “leave it” is not difficult. Begin the lessons inside your home or in an area with very few distractions. Here are the steps for teaching “leave it”: Make sure you have two different types of treats. One type can be fairly boring to the dog, but the other type should be a high-value treat that he finds pretty delicious. You will also want to make sure that the treats are broken up into pea-sized pieces so it won’t take him too long to eat them. Put one type of treat in each hand. If you like to train with a clicker as your marker, you can also hold a clicker in the same hand that holds the high-value treat. Then, place both of your hands behind your back. Make a fist with the hand that is holding the treat of lower value and present your fist to your dog, letting him sniff. Say “leave it” and wait until he finishes sniffing your fist. As soon as your dog is done sniffing, you can either click with the clicker or say “yes.” Then offer him the higher-value treat in your other hand. Repeat until your dog immediately stops sniffing your hand when you say “leave it.” When you say “leave it” and he stops sniffing right away, leash your dog and then toss a low-value treat outside of his reach. Wait until he stops sniffing and pulling toward the treat. As soon as he does, either say “yes” or click and then give him a high-value treat from your hand. Practice this exercise a number of times. Over time, by practicing “leave it,” your dog should stop pulling as soon as you give the cue. When rewarding him with a treat, make sure that it is something good, not plain old kibble. By doing so, you are teaching him that asking him to leave some food doesn’t mean he won’t get anything, but that in fact he might get something even more delicious. When your dog is reliably responding to the cue, you can teach him that “leave it” can apply to other things as well, not just food on the floor. Repeat the exercise with five different items that are fairly boring to your dog. After using five different “boring” items, start using slightly more exciting items. You know your dog, so you alone know what items he would consider more interesting, but don’t jump to high-value items right away. To increase his chances of success at learning the cue, you want to work up to high-value items gradually. If Kleenex or a piece of plastic, for instance, would attract your dog on a walk, don’t start with those. Choose the items based on your ultimate goal: Anytime you say “leave it,” you want to be confident that your dog will indeed leave whatever you are asking him to leave. . The reward he receives when he leaves an item can change as well. If your dog has a favorite toy, squeak it and play for a moment when he comes running to you after leaving the other item of interest. Most dogs love interacting with us, so a moment of praise or play with a toy can be just as effective as a treat. Keep it fun Even though you’re practicing “leave it” as a way to keep your dog safe, you want him to see it as a fun game you play. When your dog is proficient at the game in your home, start practicing in a variety of locations with more distractions.

Add a comment to Max's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Rocco
Husky
5 Years
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Rocco
Husky
5 Years

We just recently adopted Rocco from the pound and are trying to introduce him to our cat. Rocco is very sweet and calm, and doesn't seem to care too much about the cat until she is on the ground, then he gets very excited. Since he is new, he doesn't listen to commands very well and he gets very excited on the leash so it is hard to tell if the cat is getting him worked up or not. Our cat is very upset she is confined to one room right now so we really want to try to introduce them more. We also have a crate and are working on crate training him, should we use that to bring the cat around him?

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
225 Dog owners recommended

Your best bet in this situation is to go with a method to desensitize him to the cat. Rocco needs to learn that the cat is just a normal part of the household. So we need to teach him to become less reactive by the cat. If you are up for this, it is going to take about a month of consistent practice before you see results. You will want to start out by teaching him "leave it". Leave is great for anything you want your dog to leave alone. Instructions on leave it will be at the end of this response. After about a week or so of working on the command, you can start taking him around the cat while on leash. Any time he even looks at a cat, you give the command leave it. Once he breaks her attention away from the cat, you reward him with a treat. Ideally, you want to him to be sitting and looking at you. But in the beginning stages, as long as he isn't focused on the cat, you can reward him. You will literally practice this over and over, while moving closer to the cat until he is no longer interested in the cat. While this method takes a while, it is the best in relaying the messages across to your dog. The cat need to be left alone! Here are the steps for "leave it" Teaching a dog 'leave it' Teaching “leave it” is not difficult. Begin the lessons inside your home or in an area with very few distractions. Here are the steps for teaching “leave it”: Make sure you have two different types of treats. One type can be fairly boring to the dog, but the other type should be a high-value treat that he finds pretty delicious. You will also want to make sure that the treats are broken up into pea-sized pieces so it won’t take him too long to eat them. Put one type of treat in each hand. If you like to train with a clicker as your marker, you can also hold a clicker in the same hand that holds the high-value treat. Then, place both of your hands behind your back. Make a fist with the hand that is holding the treat of lower value and present your fist to your dog, letting him sniff. Say “leave it” and wait until he finishes sniffing your fist. As soon as your dog is done sniffing, you can either click with the clicker or say “yes.” Then offer him the higher-value treat in your other hand. Repeat until your dog immediately stops sniffing your hand when you say “leave it.” When you say “leave it” and he stops sniffing right away, leash your dog and then toss a low-value treat outside of his reach. Wait until he stops sniffing and pulling toward the treat. As soon as he does, either say “yes” or click and then give him a high-value treat from your hand. Practice this exercise a number of times. Over time, by practicing “leave it,” your dog should stop pulling as soon as you give the cue. When rewarding him with a treat, make sure that it is something good, not plain old kibble. By doing so, you are teaching him that asking him to leave some food doesn’t mean he won’t get anything, but that in fact he might get something even more delicious. When your dog is reliably responding to the cue, you can teach him that “leave it” can apply to other things as well, not just food on the floor. Repeat the exercise with five different items that are fairly boring to your dog. After using five different “boring” items, start using slightly more exciting items. You know your dog, so you alone know what items he would consider more interesting, but don’t jump to high-value items right away. To increase his chances of success at learning the cue, you want to work up to high-value items gradually. If Kleenex or a piece of plastic, for instance, would attract your dog on a walk, don’t start with those. Choose the items based on your ultimate goal: Anytime you say “leave it,” you want to be confident that your dog will indeed leave whatever you are asking him to leave. . The reward he receives when he leaves an item can change as well. If your dog has a favorite toy, squeak it and play for a moment when he comes running to you after leaving the other item of interest. Most dogs love interacting with us, so a moment of praise or play with a toy can be just as effective as a treat. Keep it fun Even though you’re practicing “leave it” as a way to keep your dog safe, you want him to see it as a fun game you play. When your dog is proficient at the game in your home, start practicing in a variety of locations with more distractions.

Add a comment to Rocco's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Kara
Siberian Husky
2 Years
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Kara
Siberian Husky
2 Years

I’m having a hard time to stop my dog from poking and prauding her nose at my cat, or there are time when she has pawed at her very gently as if to say she wants to play, Kara my Husky has eaten with my cat a few times from the same plate and there was no growling or nothing they shared the food just fine.. I just want her to stop chasing her when my cat goes kind of crazy or just needs her exercise by running in the house aka my cat... Kara has also layed in the living room on the floor while my cat was on my couch and my dog didn’t have her lease on, do you think I can trust her off her lease when it comes to my cat??

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
225 Dog owners recommended

Your best bet in this situation is to go with a method to desensitize him to the cats. Nika needs to learn that the cat is just a normal part of the household. So we need to teach him to become less reactive by the cat. If you are up for this, it is going to take about a month of consistent practice before you see results. You will want to start out by teaching him "leave it". Leave is great for anything you want your dog to leave alone. Instructions on leave it will be at the end of this response. After about a week or so of working on the command, you can start taking him around the cats while on leash. Any time he even looks at a cat, you give the command leave it. Once he breaks his attention away from the cats, you reward him with a treat. Ideally, you want to him to be sitting and looking at you. But in the beginning stages, as long as he isn't focused on the cat, you can reward him. You will literally practice this over and over, while moving closer to the cats until he is no longer interested in the cats. While this method takes a while, it is the best in relaying the messages across to your dog. The cats need to be left alone! Here are the steps for "leave it" Teaching a dog 'leave it' Teaching “leave it” is not difficult. Begin the lessons inside your home or in an area with very few distractions. Here are the steps for teaching “leave it”: Make sure you have two different types of treats. One type can be fairly boring to the dog, but the other type should be a high-value treat that he finds pretty delicious. You will also want to make sure that the treats are broken up into pea-sized pieces so it won’t take him too long to eat them. Put one type of treat in each hand. If you like to train with a clicker as your marker, you can also hold a clicker in the same hand that holds the high-value treat. Then, place both of your hands behind your back. Make a fist with the hand that is holding the treat of lower value and present your fist to your dog, letting him sniff. Say “leave it” and wait until he finishes sniffing your fist. As soon as your dog is done sniffing, you can either click with the clicker or say “yes.” Then offer him the higher-value treat in your other hand. Repeat until your dog immediately stops sniffing your hand when you say “leave it.” When you say “leave it” and he stops sniffing right away, leash your dog and then toss a low-value treat outside of his reach. Wait until he stops sniffing and pulling toward the treat. As soon as he does, either say “yes” or click and then give him a high-value treat from your hand. Practice this exercise a number of times. Over time, by practicing “leave it,” your dog should stop pulling as soon as you give the cue. When rewarding him with a treat, make sure that it is something good, not plain old kibble. By doing so, you are teaching him that asking him to leave some food doesn’t mean he won’t get anything, but that in fact he might get something even more delicious. When your dog is reliably responding to the cue, you can teach him that “leave it” can apply to other things as well, not just food on the floor. Repeat the exercise with five different items that are fairly boring to your dog. After using five different “boring” items, start using slightly more exciting items. You know your dog, so you alone know what items he would consider more interesting, but don’t jump to high-value items right away. To increase his chances of success at learning the cue, you want to work up to high-value items gradually. If Kleenex or a piece of plastic, for instance, would attract your dog on a walk, don’t start with those. Choose the items based on your ultimate goal: Anytime you say “leave it,” you want to be confident that your dog will indeed leave whatever you are asking him to leave. . The reward he receives when he leaves an item can change as well. If your dog has a favorite toy, squeak it and play for a moment when he comes running to you after leaving the other item of interest. Most dogs love interacting with us, so a moment of praise or play with a toy can be just as effective as a treat. Keep it fun Even though you’re practicing “leave it” as a way to keep your dog safe, you want him to see it as a fun game you play. When your dog is proficient at the game in your home, start practicing in a variety of locations with more distractions.

Add a comment to Kara's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Pepper
Siberian Husky
8 Years
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Pepper
Siberian Husky
8 Years

I just got a little kitten I got him put in his own room with lots of toys and his bed and food water and litter box he seems to be happy here. I have a husky and she has never been around cats or even really been around any other animals. She has only been around 1 or 2 dogs that she had the chance to play with. I’m really nervous and stressed when I try to get them to meet. My dog sleeps in her usual spot and kitten is in his own room they have been sniffing each other through the bottom of the door and both seem to be fine. I can get my dogs attention no problem especially with treats. I’ve let the kitten roam around the house when dog is outside so my dog is getting use to kittens scent. It’s been 4 days since I brought kitten home. I brings kitten in living room in his carrier with dog in same room and she seems to be good with it. She sits by the carrier sometimes and she bugs me to give her love. Do you think she is ready to meet kitten and how should I do it ?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello Jessica, Check out the videos linked below for teaching calmness around cats. Mild cat issue - teaching impulse control: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IWF2Ohik8iM Moderate cat issue - teaching impulse control using corrections and rewards: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9dPIC3Jtn0E Work on impulse control in general with pup, by teaching things that increase impulse control and calmness - such as a long Place command around lots of distractions. Practicing the command until you get to the point where pup will stay on Place while you are working with the kitten in the same room. I recommend also back tying pup while they are on place - safely connecting a long leash attached to pup to something near the Place just in case pup were to try to get off Place before you could intervene. Make sure what the leash is secured to, the leash itself, and pup's collar or harness are secure and not likely to break or slip off. This keeps kitty safe while practicing and reinforces to pup that they can't get off the Place. The leash should be long enough that pup doesn't feel the leash while they are obediently staying on the Place because it has some slack in the leash. You want pup to learn to stay due to obedience and self-control, and the leash just be back up for safety. Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo Below are some other commands in general you can practice to help pup develop better impulse skill/self-control - impulse control takes practice for a dog to gain the ability to control herself. Down-Stay: https://www.thelabradorsite.com/train-your-labrador-to-lie-down-and-stay/ Leave It: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bite Out - which means leave the room: https://www.petful.com/behaviors/how-to-teach-a-dog-the-out-command/ Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

Add a comment to Pepper's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Unknown
Siberian Husky
8 Weeks
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Unknown
Siberian Husky
8 Weeks

We have not received our dog yet. We are picking up a female Siberian husky tomorrow morning and adding to our family. We have 1 male cat now, we were wondering how they would interact with each other, and some advice. Thank you!

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello Mariah, I recommend crate training pup and at first pup should either be crated, confined to you with a hands-free leash, or closely supervised around the cat. Interrupt any chasing attempts or pestering of the cat, and keep the cat from pouncing or intimidating pup. Reward pup for calmness around the cat and ignoring the cat. Most puppies adjust well if you keep the rules clear and consistent to help facilitate a respectful and calm relationship between the animals and don't give too much freedom until they have adjusted. Mild cat issue - teaching impulse control: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IWF2Ohik8iM Moderate cat issue - teaching impulse control using corrections and rewards: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9dPIC3Jtn0E A good exercise to practice, is practicing the Place command until you get to the point where pup will stay on Place while you are working with the kitten in the same room. You can also back tie pup while they are on place - connecting a long leash attached to pup to something near the Place just in case pup were to try to get off Place before you could intervene. This keeps kitty safe while practicing and reinforces to pup that they can't get off the Place. The leash should be long enough that pup doesn't feel the leash while they are obediently staying on the Place because it has some slack in the leash. Depending on the size difference in the animals at this age, also be careful to protect pup from the cat and their claws. Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo Best of luck training, Catlin Crittenden

Add a comment to Unknown's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
hope
husky maybe a husky shepard mix
10 Weeks
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
hope
husky maybe a husky shepard mix
10 Weeks

we have 2 adult cats and we are about to add a 10 week old puppy a husky is this a problem

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
225 Dog owners recommended

Hello. No this isn't a problem, but you will likely want to work on boundary training with the puppy when you bring him home. Teaching him the command "leave it" and using it if he decides to chase a cat will really help in the long run with keeping the house peaceful.

Add a comment to hope's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Bodie
Alaskan Husky
2 Years
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Bodie
Alaskan Husky
2 Years

Hello, my name is Hannah and I just adopted a 2-3 year old Alaskan Husky. Bodie is the first husky I’ve ever owned. She is female and completely friendly and affectionate to myself and my boyfriend. I am however deeply concerned for my two cats at home. I have one 10 year old cat and one 1 year old cat. I am not sure how to help Bodie adjust to my cats safely. I would be devastated if something happened to either of my cats but Bodie is a rescue and I can’t imagine having to find her a new home again. I am overwhelmed and unsure if it is possible to make a safe and happy environment for all of my animals.

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
225 Dog owners recommended

Your best bet in this situation is to go with a method to desensitize her to the cats. Bodie needs to learn that the cats are just a normal part of the household. So we need to teach her to become less reactive by the cats. If you are up for this, it is going to take about a month of consistent practice before you see results. You will want to start out by teaching her "leave it". Leave is great for anything you want your dog to leave alone. Instructions on leave it will be at the end of this response. After about a week or so of working on the command, you can start taking her around the cats while on leash. Any time she even looks at a cat, you give the command leave it. Once she breaks his attention away from the cats, you reward her with a treat. Ideally, you want to her to be sitting and looking at you. But in the beginning stages, as long as she isn't focused on the cat, you can reward her. You will literally practice this over and over, while moving closer to the cats until she is no longer interested in the cats. While this method takes a while, it is the best in relaying the messages across to your dog. The cats need to be left alone! Here are the steps for "leave it" Teaching a dog 'leave it' Teaching “leave it” is not difficult. Begin the lessons inside your home or in an area with very few distractions. Here are the steps for teaching “leave it”: Make sure you have two different types of treats. One type can be fairly boring to the dog, but the other type should be a high-value treat that he finds pretty delicious. You will also want to make sure that the treats are broken up into pea-sized pieces so it won’t take him too long to eat them. Put one type of treat in each hand. If you like to train with a clicker as your marker, you can also hold a clicker in the same hand that holds the high-value treat. Then, place both of your hands behind your back. Make a fist with the hand that is holding the treat of lower value and present your fist to your dog, letting him sniff. Say “leave it” and wait until he finishes sniffing your fist. As soon as your dog is done sniffing, you can either click with the clicker or say “yes.” Then offer him the higher-value treat in your other hand. Repeat until your dog immediately stops sniffing your hand when you say “leave it.” When you say “leave it” and he stops sniffing right away, leash your dog and then toss a low-value treat outside of his reach. Wait until he stops sniffing and pulling toward the treat. As soon as he does, either say “yes” or click and then give him a high-value treat from your hand. Practice this exercise a number of times. Over time, by practicing “leave it,” your dog should stop pulling as soon as you give the cue. When rewarding him with a treat, make sure that it is something good, not plain old kibble. By doing so, you are teaching him that asking him to leave some food doesn’t mean he won’t get anything, but that in fact he might get something even more delicious. When your dog is reliably responding to the cue, you can teach him that “leave it” can apply to other things as well, not just food on the floor. Repeat the exercise with five different items that are fairly boring to your dog. After using five different “boring” items, start using slightly more exciting items. You know your dog, so you alone know what items he would consider more interesting, but don’t jump to high-value items right away. To increase his chances of success at learning the cue, you want to work up to high-value items gradually. If Kleenex or a piece of plastic, for instance, would attract your dog on a walk, don’t start with those. Choose the items based on your ultimate goal: Anytime you say “leave it,” you want to be confident that your dog will indeed leave whatever you are asking him to leave. . The reward he receives when he leaves an item can change as well. If your dog has a favorite toy, squeak it and play for a moment when he comes running to you after leaving the other item of interest. Most dogs love interacting with us, so a moment of praise or play with a toy can be just as effective as a treat. Keep it fun Even though you’re practicing “leave it” as a way to keep your dog safe, you want him to see it as a fun game you play. When your dog is proficient at the game in your home, start practicing in a variety of locations with more distractions.

Add a comment to Bodie's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Rudolf
Sibrerian Husky
9 Years
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Rudolf
Sibrerian Husky
9 Years

My dog is a purebreed Husky. He lived with our other Husky until he was about 5.My boyfriend and I have been thinking about getting him a company and I always wanted a cat. We found a Maine Coon breeder neaby, who also has dogs at home, from the cat breed and its environment, it would already be used to dogs. I am not sure how Rudolf would react, I believe he would get used to it. He is never really aggressiv torwards cats he sees on the streets, but rather curious. He once met a cat rhough garage bars that was very easy going and he was wagging his tail, but did not bark/howl nor anything. Only when another, more aggressive cat came from the inside of the house and tried to punch him. This reaction of his is actually very similar to his reaction to other dogs. He is still quite playful and sometimes a bit loud when he's overexcited. When other dogs react to his noise, he most of the time gives them space and will not get any closer. From your experience, do you think these are good indicatives he will get along well with the cat? I'm doing a lot of research on how to best adapt them both when the cat arrives.

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
225 Dog owners recommended

Your best bet in this situation is to go with a method to desensitize him to the cat. Your dog needs to learn that the cat is just a normal part of the household. So we need to teach him to become less reactive by the cat. If you are up for this, it is going to take about a month of consistent practice before you see results. You will want to start out by teaching him "leave it". Leave is great for anything you want your dog to leave alone. Instructions on leave it will be at the end of this response. After about a week or so of working on the command, you can start taking him around the cats while on leash. Any time he even looks at a cat, you give the command leave it. Once he breaks his attention away from the cats, you reward him with a treat. Ideally, you want to him to be sitting and looking at you. But in the beginning stages, as long as he isn't focused on the cat, you can reward him. You will literally practice this over and over, while moving closer to the cats until he is no longer interested in the cats. While this method takes a while, it is the best in relaying the messages across to your dog. The cats need to be left alone! Here are the steps for "leave it" Teaching a dog 'leave it' Teaching “leave it” is not difficult. Begin the lessons inside your home or in an area with very few distractions. Here are the steps for teaching “leave it”: Make sure you have two different types of treats. One type can be fairly boring to the dog, but the other type should be a high-value treat that he finds pretty delicious. You will also want to make sure that the treats are broken up into pea-sized pieces so it won’t take him too long to eat them. Put one type of treat in each hand. If you like to train with a clicker as your marker, you can also hold a clicker in the same hand that holds the high-value treat. Then, place both of your hands behind your back. Make a fist with the hand that is holding the treat of lower value and present your fist to your dog, letting him sniff. Say “leave it” and wait until he finishes sniffing your fist. As soon as your dog is done sniffing, you can either click with the clicker or say “yes.” Then offer him the higher-value treat in your other hand. Repeat until your dog immediately stops sniffing your hand when you say “leave it.” When you say “leave it” and he stops sniffing right away, leash your dog and then toss a low-value treat outside of his reach. Wait until he stops sniffing and pulling toward the treat. As soon as he does, either say “yes” or click and then give him a high-value treat from your hand. Practice this exercise a number of times. Over time, by practicing “leave it,” your dog should stop pulling as soon as you give the cue. When rewarding him with a treat, make sure that it is something good, not plain old kibble. By doing so, you are teaching him that asking him to leave some food doesn’t mean he won’t get anything, but that in fact he might get something even more delicious. When your dog is reliably responding to the cue, you can teach him that “leave it” can apply to other things as well, not just food on the floor. Repeat the exercise with five different items that are fairly boring to your dog. After using five different “boring” items, start using slightly more exciting items. You know your dog, so you alone know what items he would consider more interesting, but don’t jump to high-value items right away. To increase his chances of success at learning the cue, you want to work up to high-value items gradually. If Kleenex or a piece of plastic, for instance, would attract your dog on a walk, don’t start with those. Choose the items based on your ultimate goal: Anytime you say “leave it,” you want to be confident that your dog will indeed leave whatever you are asking him to leave. . The reward he receives when he leaves an item can change as well. If your dog has a favorite toy, squeak it and play for a moment when he comes running to you after leaving the other item of interest. Most dogs love interacting with us, so a moment of praise or play with a toy can be just as effective as a treat. Keep it fun Even though you’re practicing “leave it” as a way to keep your dog safe, you want him to see it as a fun game you play. When your dog is proficient at the game in your home, start practicing in a variety of locations with more distractions.

Add a comment to Rudolf's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Simba and Nala
Domestic cat
3 Years
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Simba and Nala
Domestic cat
3 Years

How can I train a adult husky to live with my cats? We really want a husky but find it impossible to find a husky puppy so getting a puppy is out of the question. We had a Husky puppy but she ended up passing away during surgery.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello Autumn, First, you may want to look into foster rescues or huskies being rehomed directly, so that you have a more thorough history on the dog you are considering adopting, or the foster has already tested them with cats, to find one that was raised with cats so you will already know they will be good with them. Because of their strong prey drive, many Huskies do not do well with cats when not raised with them. With that said, check out the videos linked below for some things you can practice with the dog. These things tend to work best with Huskies who are not highly prey driven toward the cats. If a strong prey drive toward the cats is present, you will likely need professional help and to teach a strong avoidance of the cats and to constantly manage their interactions and not leave them alone together to keep the cats safe. With a Husky who is simply too rough with the cats or wants to chase, but it's trying to harm the cats, teaching calmness and self-control around them can help a lot. Mild cat issue - teaching impulse control: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IWF2Ohik8iM Moderate cat issue - teaching impulse control using corrections and rewards: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9dPIC3Jtn0E Work on impulse control in general with pup, by teaching things that increase impulse control and calmness - such as a long, Place command around lots of distractions. Practicing the command until you get to the point where pup will stay on Place while you are working with the kitten in the same room. You can also back tie pup while they are on place - connecting a long leash attached to pup to something near the Place just in case pup were to try to get off Place before you could intervene. This keeps kitty safe while practicing and reinforces to pup that they can't get off the Place. The leash should be long enough that pup doesn't feel the leash while they are obediently staying on the Place because it has some slack in the leash. Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo Below are some other commands in general you can practice to help pup develop better impulse skill/self-control - impulse control takes practice for a dog to gain the ability to control herself. Down-Stay: https://www.thelabradorsite.com/train-your-labrador-to-lie-down-and-stay/ Leave It: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bite Out - which means leave the room: https://www.petful.com/behaviors/how-to-teach-a-dog-the-out-command/ Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

Add a comment to Simba and Nala's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Ollie
Husky
9 Months
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Ollie
Husky
9 Months

I have a 9 month old husky and my boyfriend has a year and a half old cat. We plan on moving in together soon and worry about them bonding. My husky is slightly aggressive when it come to us owners as he nips occasionally when we want him to do something and he doesn't want to. He's never aggressive towards any other animals though. I take him to the park often and he's very friendly with all other breeds. He's only seen a cat once before on our walk, he was curious and only sniffed it and the cat hissed and he went about his business so wasn't a bad first experience.
I just worry it might be different when he has to share a same space with another animal. Unfortunately my boyfriend's mom forced him to get the cat's front paws declawed. So I'm scared she wont be able to defend herself if something goes wrong. My husky is not crate trained and is not okay with being locked in a room either so whenever we have to leave in the future I worry. What would be the best way to introduce them together and in a new environment as well

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
225 Dog owners recommended

Your best bet in this situation is to go with a method to desensitize him to the cat. Your dog needs to learn that the cat is just a normal part of the household. So we need to teach him to become less reactive by the cat. If you are up for this, it is going to take about a month of consistent practice before you see results. You will want to start out by teaching him "leave it". Leave is great for anything you want your dog to leave alone. Instructions on leave it will be at the end of this response. After about a week or so of working on the command, you can start taking him around the cats while on leash. Any time he even looks at a cat, you give the command leave it. Once he breaks his attention away from the cats, you reward him with a treat. Ideally, you want to him to be sitting and looking at you. But in the beginning stages, as long as he isn't focused on the cat, you can reward him. You will literally practice this over and over, while moving closer to the cats until he is no longer interested in the cats. While this method takes a while, it is the best in relaying the messages across to your dog. The cats need to be left alone! Here are the steps for "leave it" Teaching a dog 'leave it' Teaching “leave it” is not difficult. Begin the lessons inside your home or in an area with very few distractions. Here are the steps for teaching “leave it”: Make sure you have two different types of treats. One type can be fairly boring to the dog, but the other type should be a high-value treat that he finds pretty delicious. You will also want to make sure that the treats are broken up into pea-sized pieces so it won’t take him too long to eat them. Put one type of treat in each hand. If you like to train with a clicker as your marker, you can also hold a clicker in the same hand that holds the high-value treat. Then, place both of your hands behind your back. Make a fist with the hand that is holding the treat of lower value and present your fist to your dog, letting him sniff. Say “leave it” and wait until he finishes sniffing your fist. As soon as your dog is done sniffing, you can either click with the clicker or say “yes.” Then offer him the higher-value treat in your other hand. Repeat until your dog immediately stops sniffing your hand when you say “leave it.” When you say “leave it” and he stops sniffing right away, leash your dog and then toss a low-value treat outside of his reach. Wait until he stops sniffing and pulling toward the treat. As soon as he does, either say “yes” or click and then give him a high-value treat from your hand. Practice this exercise a number of times. Over time, by practicing “leave it,” your dog should stop pulling as soon as you give the cue. When rewarding him with a treat, make sure that it is something good, not plain old kibble. By doing so, you are teaching him that asking him to leave some food doesn’t mean he won’t get anything, but that in fact he might get something even more delicious. When your dog is reliably responding to the cue, you can teach him that “leave it” can apply to other things as well, not just food on the floor. Repeat the exercise with five different items that are fairly boring to your dog. After using five different “boring” items, start using slightly more exciting items. You know your dog, so you alone know what items he would consider more interesting, but don’t jump to high-value items right away. To increase his chances of success at learning the cue, you want to work up to high-value items gradually. If Kleenex or a piece of plastic, for instance, would attract your dog on a walk, don’t start with those. Choose the items based on your ultimate goal: Anytime you say “leave it,” you want to be confident that your dog will indeed leave whatever you are asking him to leave. . The reward he receives when he leaves an item can change as well. If your dog has a favorite toy, squeak it and play for a moment when he comes running to you after leaving the other item of interest. Most dogs love interacting with us, so a moment of praise or play with a toy can be just as effective as a treat. Keep it fun Even though you’re practicing “leave it” as a way to keep your dog safe, you want him to see it as a fun game you play. When your dog is proficient at the game in your home, start practicing in a variety of locations with more distractions.

Add a comment to Ollie's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Question
Gracie
Siberian Husky
3 Months
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Gracie
Siberian Husky
3 Months

Jumping on you, pulling on shoelaces, constantly nipping at your feet, hands etc. Pulling at your pant legs or sleeves resulting in holes.
We have 3 cats - which they go nose to nose with her with a gate between BUT now she has started growling at them. We also have a 10 year old Guide Dog golden retriever who is scared of her and runs away

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello Jean, First, check out the articles I have linked below. Jumping - I would try the step toward method first, since it sounds like pup is biting you specifically when off the leash inside. The Leash method is good for guests instead. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-australian-shepherds-to-not-jump Leave It method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bite Out - how to teach a dog Out and how to use Out to deal with pushy behavior sections, especially. https://www.petful.com/behaviors/how-to-teach-a-dog-the-out-command/ Quiet: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Chewing: https://www.petful.com/behaviors/train-dog-not-to-chew/ Crate Training - Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate I would start by adding more structure. I would work on the above commands, working up to crate training and a long Place command around the cats. Mild cat issue - teaching impulse control: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IWF2Ohik8iM Moderate cat issue - teaching impulse control using corrections and rewards: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9dPIC3Jtn0E I would enforce Out and Leave It on behalf of your older dog, and when you can't supervise pup around the other animals, I would crate pup or put them in an exercise pen with a dog food stuffed chew toy, or tether pup to yourself with a hands free leash. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

Add a comment to Gracie's experience

Was this experience helpful?

Book me a walkiee?
Pweeeze!
Sketch of smiling australian shepherd