There are two types of people in this world: those who think golden retrievers are good with cats, and those who think they are not. If you find yourself in the latter camp, I’m here to tell you that you’re wrong. Dead wrong.
If they are given the correct obedience training and socialization, Golden Retrievers can be good with both cats and other animals. They are friendly, playful, and caring dogs who love to be with others. They also seem to be very fond of children and small animals, such as a kitten. The two can co-exist in one home as long as they are both trained and conditioned.
Many Golden Retriever owners have witnessed them cuddle with cats after they have overcome any hostility from their first encounter. Golden Retrievers are good and should be a reason to bring your new family dog home.
Are Golden Retrievers and Cats compatible?
First of all, let’s get one thing straight: cats and dogs are not natural enemies. In fact, they have a long history of living together in harmony. It’s only in recent years that the so-called “war” between cats and dogs has been waged, largely thanks to Hollywood movies and TV shows that pit the two against each other (looking at you, Tom and Jerry).
But the truth is, most dogs and cats get along just fine. Take golden retrievers, for example. These gentle giants are known for their friendly dispositions and love of all creatures, both big and small. In fact, many golden retriever owners will tell you that their dog is best friends with their cat.
Of course, there are always exceptions to the rule. Just like there are some humans who don’t get along with others, there will always be a few dogs and cats who just can’t seem to see eye to eye. But by and large, golden retrievers are good with cats—and vice versa.
Cats can be aloof and have difficulty getting along with other household animals. Cats can have trouble bonding with certain dog breeds.
Respect a cat and it will return the favor. Your cat will not like a golden retriever that chases your cat and barks at it.
If the dog treats your cat with respect, it won’t bother them. Your cat may even make furry friends with the golden retriever over time. They might enjoy cuddling and playing together. But it takes time to establish trust between these two species.
Why might cats dislike the Golden Retriever?
Because dogs are a threat to cats, they are instinctively wary of them. A large dog, like the Golden Retriever, could easily cause death to a cat if it wanted to. So it makes sense that cats would be cautious around them.
Cats also have different personalities and energy levels compared to dogs. Although cats are sometimes playful, they don’t have the same playful qualities. Golden retrievers have to be more active while cats spend more time in relaxation mode. These basic personality differences can lead to fighting. For example, a Golden Retriever puppy might want to play with a cat who wants to relax and sleep.
Dogs and cats can’t always understand each other. For entertainment and fun, a golden retriever might chase a cat. The cat may not be able to understand that the dog is playing and might feel scared. These are not common issues because the Golden Retriever is a dog breed that gets along well with cats.
Golden Retrievers Personality
Understanding your Golden Retriever’s friendly personality and breeding history is essential if you want both the dog and cat to get along. You can reduce the worst traits of your dog so your cat is more at ease.
Golden Retrievers were originally bred for hunting, specifically to bring back prey. These instincts have remained even though they were kept as pets for quite some time. Although most Golden Retrievers share the same personality traits as their owners:
- Have fun playing fetch. This is why they were originally bred.
- Can be taught to recognize commands. This was necessary so the dog could drop the bird for its owner.
- They are playful and spent all day with their hunters.
- Likes chasing. This was an essential part of the job of a golden retriever.
- Loves human company.
What you need to know about owning a Golden Retriever and a Cat
It takes time for a new cat or dog to adjust to its environment and routine. It is important to take the necessary precautions when caring for your new animal.
The journey is still exciting and you can use these guidelines to keep your pets happy and safe.
Golden Retrievers and Cats can Live in Harmony
Golden Retrievers are good, loving dogs that are friendly to cats. They are known for being extremely affectionate and can show it in their behavior towards kittens.
They are gentle and won’t harm your cat by barking aggressively or dominating your cat with their physical strength.
Their intelligence plays an important part in their success with cats. They are intuitive dogs and know when to back away from an angry cat.
The American Bobtail cat is credited with being the closest cat breed to Golden Retrievers. These two are a great pair if you’re looking to have a loyal cat that enjoys adventures.
Give your animals a chance to get to know each other
Socialization is key to a dog’s success in new introductions. You can socialize your Golden Retriever by taking them on adventures. They enjoy being part of family hikes and trips to the beach with their owners. They learn to be more adaptable when they do this.
Socialization is an advantage, but a cat may be a new experience for some dogs. Be patient when introducing your pets to new people. It can be stressful for both dog and cat, so make sure you are there for the first week.
It’s a good idea to allow cats to settle down in separate rooms for a few days if they are still adjusting to their environment. You can gradually introduce your Golden Retriever to them once they become more comfortable with their surroundings.
The two can be introduced through glass doors, or when the family is home to keep watch on everything. You can keep your Retriever leashed for the first few times.
Keep toys and treats to choose from for new introductions
It’s a smart idea to be prepared for when your babies meet.
We all know that cats can be finicky about new faces. This is especially true if they have big ears, hairy faces, and wet nostrils. It’s a good idea now to get catnip for your cat.
Dog training is most effective when the dog has enough stimulation. Dog treats, chewing toys and dog puzzles are great distractions for your cat as it explores the house and takes in all the exciting smells.
Training is a long-term investment
Training is the best way to teach your Golden Retriever how to behave well.
Service dog organizations use Golden Retrievers for this reason. These happy-go-lucky dogs are always looking for approval from humans. The breed is one of the easiest to train, so you can start training them when they are puppies.
They are easy to train but you shouldn’t be lazy about reinforcement. If these dogs aren’t well trained, they can become overwhelming if you live with a smaller household – especially for your cat.
Learn the characteristics of your cat’s breed
If you are a cat owner and want to adopt a golden, keep in mind your cat’s personality. You should consider that if your cat is old and clingy, introductions may take longer. If this happens, you may end up with an angry cat.
As long you are patient and follow the correct procedures (like slow introductions or the tips in this post), hopefully, the two of you will get along well in no time.
You need to give your Golden Retriever enough exercise
These dogs love to cuddle up on the couch but they are also very energetic. You need to make sure that your dog gets enough exercise, regardless of the breed. For Golden Retrievers, this is 20-30 minutes per day.
They are intelligent and active, so they will likely become bored if they don’t get enough exercise. Boredom can cause and lead to aggression towards other housemates like your lounging cat.
A tired Golden Retriever is a happy Golden Retriever. They’re less likely impulsively to chase the cat after having had fun and exercise.
Do not place your cat in stressful situations
Cats are independent creatures and feel more at home in their environment than being held. Even worse, cats can become more stressed if you pick them up when they feel threatened.
Cats will flee, fight or freeze if they feel threatened. If they are trapped in a house, their first instinct is to seek out higher territory.
Your cat should be allowed to roam at his own pace. Giving your cat freedom makes them feel secure and allows them to find their own safe space and makes them able to escape when they need it.
This freedom allows the pets to form a natural hierarchy. Each pet must learn to respect others and to know their boundaries.
If the two don’t get along, professional training is always an option
It’s crucial to address any behavior you see in the above points before they become a routine. You can invest in professional training if you have trouble balancing the two.
Pet owners can love and take care of their dogs but often don’t know how to respond in distress. It’s not something to be ashamed of. A professional trainer can help you assess your situation and find the best solution for your animal and your well-being.
It is best to learn about the dog’s history before you adopt a dog.
Pedigree breeding is a great way to learn about a dog’s personality and traits, but outside factors can also play a part in his behavior.
Adopting a dog without owners to speak to is not easy. However, it is important to learn as much information as possible about the dog. You will not know as much about the dog as the shelters or rescue pages do.
These are some questions to ask about the history of a dog before you bring them into a home with cats.
- Is the dog familiar with cats and dogs?
- Is the dog able to get along with other dogs or children?
- Are they able to socialize with cats?
- Is the dog currently being trained? If so, how difficult was it?
- Do you think the dog is territorial around its home?
- Is the dog grumpy or untrainable because of its old age?
If the two don’t like each other, your only way to tell is by their behavior
After several weeks or months of interaction, your new pet should be able to tell you if they enjoy each other. Golden Retrievers are great companions for cats because of their love and affection.
Cats are less likely to interact with dogs because love to cuddle up with their owners and enjoy a good nap in the sun.
Both animals should learn to be comfortable around each other. If the two animals don’t get along, here are some warning signs to look out for:
- Dogs will bark or whine to reach the cat
- Dogs are very focused on their cat and will watch them closely.
- If the cat is too close, or when they walk past them, the dog will start to snark at them.
- As an indicator of irritation, cats will flick their tails backward and forwards.
- Cats will either spit on dogs who are nearby or snarl at them.
Designate separate safe spaces for your Golden Retriever and Cat
A large home is necessary if you want to have a Golden Retriever. Cats don’t require much space. No matter how big your home is, each pet will need its own space.
If your pets feel threatened or uncomfortable, they can retreat to a safe place by using an open window or a bed on a ledge. Dogs may have a kennel, a cage, or a bed hidden somewhere in the house.
You should keep your cat and dog’s water bowls and food bowls in separate areas of the house. Also, toys and scratch posts should be kept separate. This prevents them from fighting over food and territory.
Dynamic duo: The Golden Retriever and Cat
So next time someone tries to tell you that golden retrievers aren’t good with cats, don’t believe them! These furry friends can get along just fine—and may even become best friends in the process.
Golden Retrievers’ friendly personalities suppress their wolf-ancestry prey drive and allow them to be good friends with cats. These dogs were created to be friends with humans (especially with kids).
If both cats and Golden Retrievers are introduced when they are young, they will be more likely to become great friends. It’s safer to introduce them gradually through a series of socialization training if done later in life.
It is wise to adopt a Golden Retriever if you already own a cat due to their gentle and affectionate nature they have less barking, can be trained quickly, and get along well with other animals.