Friday, April 13, 2007

A Myth Busted!

When I was young and innocent, I normally believed what others told me. Stories of how a dog normally tear a cat to pieces were told over and over by so many adults until I lost count. This myth stayed with me until a few months ago when I decided to embark on a new change of life. I quit my job and decided to take up a dog grooming course. Upon taking up the course, it is only natural that I get a dog of my own. I hesitated initially as I was living with two male cats, my 16year old American shorthaired mix, Ah Boy, and my 3 years old rescued black stray who goes by the name, Sirius Black.

Unfortunately I was not given the opportunity to dwell long on my decision as my little brother Raymond Sern called up with news that there's a Silky Terrier up for adoption and in need of a good home fast. Without thinking I quickly gave him my consent to take the dog home.

The lucky dog, Ms. Phoebe Cates, started to explore the house carefully as it was surrounded by cat smell. I was always by her side to rescue her if the need arise. At that time, both the male cats were up on the dining table looking at Phoebe curiously exploring her new environment. Then, Ah Boy did the un-thinkable, he jumped down beside Phoebe, gave her a hiss (at this time I was already on my kness holding on to Phoebe who is much smaller than Ah Boy eventhough she is a full grown bitch of 2 years old), then started to smell her all over. Bear in mind that I was holding my breath all these while... Ah Boy then decided that Phoebe will never pose a threat to his Kingdom hood, turned around and just walk away. I congratulated Phoebe on her coolness towards the whole incident. She didn't bark nor tried to snap at Ah Boy thus earning his trust as a loyal friend from then on. Thus a MYTH busted!

Who said that cats and dogs cannot see eye to eye? Who ever came up with such notion that they are sworn enemies? I have a friend who is a vet by profession and she has 2 dogs, 1 cat, a bird and fishes all living together in perfect harmony. As for myself, I'm proud to say that both Ah Boy and Ms Phoebe Cates are willing to take turns sleeping on my feet whenever I'm sitted down to do my work at the PC (you can actually see this in one of the photos featured). My darling Sirius Black has also developed a strong liking to Aragorn, the Papillion and is always trying to look after him especially when he sleeps. In the other photo you can see Sweetie the Shih Tzu licking Ginger Ale, another male cat.

The trick is treat everyone equally. If you already have one cat and is thinking of getting a dog to add on to the happy family, get a friend or a family member to help you with the initial introduction. Hold each of them comfortably in your hands and bring them to face each other at a respected distance. If there is no hostility coming from them both, move closer to each other while talking to them in a very soft manner encouraging them to get to know each other. Praise them is they do not show any hostility and scold them in a stern manner if they show any dislike by either barking or yeolling. Hold them in this position slightly longer so then they can get to smell each other. After that, let them go and repeat the same a few more times for a few days until they are totally comfortable with each other.

Animals of any kind are naturally born very curious to get to know any new addition to the family. I am very sure that in no time both your cat and dog will end up playmates vying for that special spot on your lap. On the other hand do be careful especially if any of them show instant dislike or hostility towards the other. Cats have known to be extra fast when it comes to swiping with their claws and dogs can be fast if they decide that they want to bite something. So be on your guard at all times. Make sure that you are around when the initial introduction takes place. Your presence not only calms down the pet, you are also in the position to stop any unfavourable accident from happening. Happy interacting!


eternity said...

hey sis, try having a mouse in the home too! :P

PrettyPaws&DoggieRibbons said...

Hello lil sister, I don't think a mouse is a good idea. Phoebe will shread it to pieces. She's a true blue "rodent seeker" and I don't want to be responsible for any accidental killing... How's the baby coming?

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