Thursday, September 6, 2012

Cats and Dogs living together: The Cold War inside my house

This is Galadriel.

I've had Galadriel since she was 3, when my brother and I adopted her from Orange County Animal Services. She was supposed to be his cat, but he was always more of a dog person, and she is not always very loveable.

But she can be very cute.

Galadriel, however, does not like dogs. I don't know if something happened when she was a kitten or what. She and my brother's dog never got along. If Chewie would walk by, Galadriel had the claws out ready to attack. But Chewie never put up with the cat. Lulu on the other hand...

That's Lulu in the back, afraid to walk past the cat, even for a treat.

I did do all the things you were supposed to do when introducing a cat to a dog. We kept them apart, then we slowly introduced them. And Lulu and Galadriel had known each other off an on for at least two years before Lulu became my dog. But the minute Lulu came into the house, Galadriel made sure to assert her dominance. 

I wish I could show it to you, because it was amazing. That cat, half Lulu's size (though maybe not weight), chasing Lulu from one end of the apartment to the other, until Lulu was crouched in a corner, quivering, and Galadriel just sat there, hissing at every move the dog made.

She hasn't done that lately. But to this day, Lulu doesn't try to cross her often. Except, of course, if I have food. Then all bets are off. Lulu knows she's not getting any, but she wants to make sure Galadriel doesn't get any either. With teeth bared and barking.

Not entirely sure what to do to make them at least tolerate each other more. Separating them with treats doesn't really work. And Lulu tries all sorts of ways to get a little of her own back at the cat -- like going into the litter box.

Cesar Millan is, sadly, silent about this from what I've seen. Most places only talk about how to introduce the pets, not what to do if they are already established. I did find an interesting story on Slate, very well written. But the writer's conclusion that Prozac is helpful leaves me feeling doomed.

I will take any tips people have at this point, so please share.Until then, these fleeting moments of peace between the two of them will have to do.


  1. Put they are so cute and then add in the little Yappy 4 leg and my goodness it is loud! Love Ya

  2. You need to check out Jackson Galaxy the cat behaviorist. He just had an episode on the Animal Planet about 2 weeks ago. Go to Animal Planet and check or go to his website.


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