Many people believe that Rottweilers and Cats are mortal enemies, like Batman and the Joker; they cannot stay within close proximity to the other. The question about dogs and cats getting along is a very common question in the dog lovers forum. From German shepherds and cats, Golden Retriever and cats, and many other dogs. But what about rottweilers?
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Can rottweilers and cats get along? Yes, Rottweilers and cats can easily get along, however, due to different personality types of cats and dogs or if you’re introducing them for the first time, it is advisable to take it slow in the introduction until both pets are comfortable with each other.
If you are planning to introduce a cat and Rottweiler, feel confident that the two could become the best of pals. However, several factors must be met for the two to live harmoniously together. Read on to find out more factors to consider before you introduce them.
Understanding the Rottweilers Personality
Rottweilers are among the largest dog breeds in the world. Male Rottweilers can grow to a height of 24-27 inches with a weight of 110-132 pounds. Females average between 22-25 inches with a weight of up to 105 pounds.
Rottweilers are very active, intelligent, and confident dogs. They are not afraid to act on their own. These dogs are known to be very territorial and easily display aggressive tendencies, especially in dominant males, as they have a very strong prey drive. If they are left on their own, they can wreak a lot of damage either barking or digging.
Initially, Rottweilers were bred for guardian, carriage, and protection work. They would drive cattle to market, pull carts, guard homesteads, and work as security. They would carry money to and from the market in money belts tied around their necks bringing the loot to their owners. No one dared to come near the canines for they were fiercely protective.
Currently, Rottweilers are one of the most popular dog breeds in the United States. Breeders trained them to become proper house companions with a kind loving demeanor but with a fiercely protective side.
Why do Rottweilers chase cats?
Now that we have discussed the personality traits of Rottweilers, let’s try to understand why Rottweilers chase cats.
Firstly, Rottweilers typically have a dominant behavior. Due to their protective and guarding instincts, they are wary of new animals and other people getting close to their environment. If you plan to introduce a cat, ensure your Rottweiler is adequately trained.
Secondly, even though dogs have been bred differently, most retained the drive to hunt. This drive often manifests itself in different ways, from searching, stalking, chasing, biting to kill, and grabbing to kill. Depending on what the dog was bred to do, this prey drive manifests itself differently. In Rottweilers, the prey drive often manifests itself as chasing because they were initially bred as herding dogs.
Why is this Important?
Because of your cat’s small posture and its speed, if it runs, it may provoke a chase response from your Rottweiler. This may be hazardous for both your cat and Rottweiler. However, Rottweilers are fairly tolerant of cats when introduced and socialized well.
How to introduce Rottweilers and Cats Step by Step
Depending on the situation, the process of introducing your Rottweiler and cat may differ. For instance, are you introducing a young Rottweiler and kitten? Are you introducing a kitten to an adult Rottweiler? Are both the pets mature?
These questions need to be considered and the steps below followed.
STEP 1: Introduce Scents
Whether your pets are young or old, you do not want to surprise them. Consider introducing the scent of the other through the following process:
- Place the two animals in separate rooms. If it is a kitten and puppy, consider placing them in different boxes.
- Take a towel or bedding used by the Rottweiler for several days and place it in the cat’s enclosure.
- Take a towel or bedding used by the cat and place in the Rottweilers enclosure
- If either of them sniffs the item, give them a treat. By doing this, you are conditioning them to associate the scent with something good.
Note: Your Rottweiler may growl or bark at the towel, while your cat hisses. Do not punish them for this reaction, as it is natural. Continue with this exercise for a few more days until you notice they are no longer acting negatively towards the others’ scent.
STEP 2: Face-to-Face Meeting with a Barrier and with Supervision
- Find a spacious and safe place for both your Rottweiler and cat, either in the house or garden and place them there.
- Ensure there is a barrier between the two animals. For instance, place the Rottweiler and Cat on each either side of the Garden gate. Place the cat inside the house, and the dog outside on the porch with the glass door closed.
- Allow the two pets to see and acknowledge the presence of the other
- If the pets can sniff each other through the barrier, allow them to do so if they show interest in doing so. If they do not, it is okay.
- Continue introducing them in this manner for longer and longer periods until they get used to seeing each other.
- Spend time with both pets equally ensuring that they each know the presence of the other does not hinder their relationship with you. This will hinder any negative associations of one with the other.
Important Note: Ensure your Rottweiler is muzzled. This will prevent any instances of biting or grabbing that may lead to injuries or death, especially in cases where the barrier is not fully enclosed, such as a gate or cage.
STEP 3: Face to Face Introduction with a leash
- Set your Rottweiler and Cat on either side of a barricade. For instance, where your Rottweiler is in a cage and your cat roams free. Alternatively, you can have your Rottweiler on a leash and Muzzle and allow the cat to roam the room.
- Allow the pets to come close to each other and sniff each other.
- Continue with this step until you are confident that the two pets are ready to be officially introduced.
STEP 4: Have a Supervised Face to Face Meeting
- Ensure your Rottweiler is Muzzled, but not on a leash.
- Place the two pets in a room together and allow them to roam freely.
- If you see signs of aggression, separate the two.
- Continue with this process until the two can comfortably sit in one room together.
STEP 5: Have an Unsupervised Face to Face Meeting
Once you are confident that both your Rottweiler and cat can confidently hang out without fighting, and then have an unsupervised face-to-face meeting.
- Place both your pets in the same room
- Allow the two to interact for five minutes without supervision
- Do not Muzzle the Rottweiler
- Continue leaving them for longer and longer periods until you can confidently leave the house
Important Points to Remember
Your Cat needs its own Space, Litterbox that it does not share with the Rottweiler to do its business. Train the Rottweiler to do its business outside so that your cat may feel safe and comfortable to do its own business in its litterbox.
All dogs are different. You may go through these steps and still have a dog that does not want to share its living space with any other animal. This is the worst-case scenario and it does happen.
Take your time with each of the steps. Do not rush and end up regretting the decision later. For a relationship between a Rottweiler and a cat to function, it is not enough to understand the Rottweiler alone, knowing a cats’ personality and the impact it has on the relationship is important.
You may train your Rottweiler to cohabitate with a cat, but if your cat’s personality is not pro-cohabiting, chances are that there will be tension between the two pets.
Understanding a Cat’s Personality
Many people view the domestic cat as a perfect pet. It is intelligent, elegant, calm, self-cleaning, and self-exercising. Cat owners rarely have to worry about the pet because it is quite independent and can easily provide social and emotional support.
Sadly, little is known about the domestic cat’s behavior. According to the American Veterinary Medical Association, Studies have placed a lot of emphasis on developing knowledge regarding behavioral problems of stressed cats rather than the psychology and behavior of healthy cats with a focus on their interactions with other species.
However, in 2017, Researchers in South Australia and New Zealand came up with a standard depicting five cat personality traits (The Feline Five). These traits have provided cat owners and other researchers a better understanding of the domestic cat. These traits include:
Cats that are insecure, anxious, fearful, suspicious, and shy. These cats run to hide at the site of stranger objects, people, or animals.
When introducing your Rottweiler and cat, it may take a lot of time to ensure the two are comfortable with one another. A Neurotic cat will be quick to run away from something as big and intimidating as a Rottweiler; this may elicit a chase response from the Rottweiler, which can lead to injuries or death.
Cats that active, vigilant, curious, inquisitive, inventive, and smart. These cats will not shy off from a new person or challenge. In new environments, these cats are excited and quickly explore their surroundings. This is the perfect personality for your cat to have.
Introducing a Rottweiler to this kind of cat is easy. The cat is already willing to meet this new animal and is ready for play. If your Rottweiler and cat are young, the introduction process will not take long as both are happy to meet, interact, and play with each other.
Cats that are affectionate, friendly, and gentle.
Cats with this personality were socialized well when young. They coincide well with other animals. Hence, such a cat may be a good companion for your Rottweiler.
Cats that show erratic and reckless behavior. These cats are not comfortable in their own environment and often need a lot of time to gain confidence and become comfortable. They thrive in environments where schedules are followed.
Be careful and take your time to introduce the Rottweiler and cat properly. Due to the cat’s impulsive nature, it may be intimidated by the Rottweiler and consequently run on sight. This may be dangerous if your Rottweiler decides to chase after it.
‘Boss cats’. These cats bully and act aggressively towards other animals. They often do not get along with other animals and are territorial.
If your cat doesn’t like sharing its food, is aggressive, and starts fights with animals that are bigger than itself, it may be a dangerous pet to have as it can elicit a fight between itself and the Rottweiler.
Remember: You cannot know what kind of personality a Kitten will grow up having. However, if you are adopting a cat, ask about their behavior and preferences. This will give you a basis on the kind of personality the cat may have.
Do this to get your Rottweiler and Cat get along?
For a Rottweiler and cat to get along, proper introductions must be made with the right precautionary measures taken. Training both the Rottweiler and Cat to get used to each other and live harmoniously is a process that requires patience and tolerance. If this is your desire, consider following the steps below:
STEP 1: Introduce and Socialize the Rottweiler and cat as young as possible
Training your Rottweiler to socialize at a young age will be easier than when it is older. A young dog is still learning of its environment and it will be open to new people and animals being in its environment better than when it is older and set in its own ways.
Simply put, you can easily mold a young Rottweiler and Cat to be the best of friends because they are not yet aware of their inherent differences.
STEP 2: Give your Rottweiler Daily Obedience Training
Training your Rottweiler and training your cat the art of obedience allows you to communicate what you see as good and bad behavior. It also teaches your pets who are in charge and what the rules are.
STEP 3: Meet your Rottweiler and Cats needs
Providing for both your Rottweiler and Cat ensures they both feel safe and secure. By not neglecting their needs, your pets will be stress-free and happy. This will provide a peaceful environment where both pets feel loved and cared for.
STEP 4: Introduce them in Stages (For Older Rottweilers and Cats)
If you plan on introducing an adult Rottweiler to a kitten or cat, consider introducing the two in phases. There is a high chance your Rottweiler may not respond well to the presence of a new animal, so take precautionary measures to ensure your dog does not attack and harm your cat.
STEP 5: Socialize your Rottweiler and/or cat
If you have a Rottweiler, consider socializing them every day. This can be done by taking them to a different environment, which contains new animals, or taking them on walks or parks with other dogs. This allows your Rottweiler to interact with other animals and encourage ‘meet and greet’ behavior. When you decide to introduce your Rottweiler and Cat, the two will get along easily.
STEP 6: Monitor your body Language
When introducing Rottweilers and cats, ensure that your body language and voice is calm and composed. You want to maintain a pleasant, calm, and happy atmosphere.
Remember that your Rottweiler has strong guarding and protective instincts, if they sense that you are nervous, they may associate the cat’s presence as a danger to you and instinctively attack.
Can I Tell if my Rottweiler and Cat will get along?
Yes, sometimes the behavior of your Rottweiler and cat can indicate whether the two will end up getting along or not. For instance, if your Rottweiler portrays very aggressive behaviors towards other animals, chasing other cats and squirrels, most likely, it may not get along with a new animal. Also, if your cat has dominant behavior, it is likely that the two may not get along.
Final thoughts-Cat Rottweilers and cats get along?
The chances of having a Rottweiler and cat get along all depend on a variety of factors. From the personality of both pets, their age, socialization when young to how they are introduced all these are contributing factors.
If you are planning to introduce a Rottweiler and cat, consider introducing them at a younger age, it is easier and takes less effort. However, if you already have your Rottweiler and plan on bringing in a cat in the future, start socializing the dog so that you have an easier time then.
Also remember that the process is not always seamless for everyone so if your Rottweiler and Cat don’t end up being friends, at least you tried.