How can I get my dog to be gentler with my cat?
(Q) How do I get my spaniel to be a bit gentler with my cat? They’re both friendly with each other but I’m worried he’ll hurt the cat, as he plays with him like another dog and whacks him with his paw!
(A) Trainer Tony Cruse says: It’s often the dog that comes away from a cat/dog confrontation worse off. Cats have the tools to do some damage and can then get away fast.
If the cat is healthy and has an exit route such as an open door or a table to hop on, she will be more content. If she doesn’t want to interact, she can simply leave. For a happy house containing a cat and a dog, it is a good idea to put up some shelving. The shelves can provide the cat with a safe place to be, up and away from the dog.
If you are still unsure, you can manage the situation by clipping your dog on to his lead to prevent any lunging or chasing. If your dog is stopped from causing mischief and your cat has an exit, they can learn to interact over time.