Pit Bull 101: Cat Chasing

If your dog has already begun chasing your cat, it take a little time to stop the behavior. If you are just introducing your dog and your cat, you can set up your new happy family really easily. Here are steps to your success:

  • Dog Management: Keep your dog tethered with a leash to prohibit him from chasing your cat. You can tie the leash around your waist, hook it on th eback side of a door and close the door, or tether your dog to the sofa leg.
  • Cat’s Job: Let your cat decide when to approach. Never force a cat to meet a dog.
  • Good Behavior: Immediately praise your dog’s calm behavior in the presence of your cat. To better reinforce your dog before he makes a mistake, use treats, a favorite game or even rushing out the door for a walk. Basically, anything your dog really likes can be used as a reward if it quickly follows behaviors you like.
  • Naughty Behavior: When your dog tries to move forward or chase your cat, mark the moment in a dissapointed face. Favorite cues include “too bad, oops,” or even “naughty.” Praise your dog if he stops in his tracks. If he continues to even stare at your cat, say “time out!” and take him by the lead to the time out room*.
  • Improvement: As you gain trust with your dog and your cat, you can use a longer leash or let your dog drag a leash around the house. You still want to be able to implement a time-out if necessary.

*A time out room can be a bathroom, laundry room or even behind a door with the leash through so you can keep your dog close at hand. A time-out is just long enough to make the point so it can be for just 10-60 seconds. Please do not let your dog back in if he is barking or scratching at the door. Wait until that behavior stops.