From a young age, we are thought that cats and dogs don’t get along. But this is not always true. Some dogs can befriend cats and live together. But are Beagles good with cats?
Beagles can get along with cats perfectly. They are friendly, affectionate dogs with a pack mentality. But they also have a high prey drive due to their hunting origins. The first meeting between these two animals should be a careful slow process.
- Why Do Beagles Get Along With Cats?
- What To Consider Before The First Meeting
- Introducing Beagles With Cats
Why Do Beagles Get Along With Cats?
Beagles are natural hunting dogs with a high prey drive. That explains their tendency of chasing any animals smaller than them. But they can still get along with cats if taught how to. Beagles have some beneficial personality traits that help them live with cats.
They Are Gentle And Friendly
Beagles are not typically recognized to be aggressive. Their friendly behavior is actually one of their best-known characteristics. They get along with practically everyone, making them excellent around kids and other animals.
They were not fighting the prey during hunting, despite their heritage as hunting dogs. They used to detect the scent and inform their owner when a potential prey is nearby. That’s why they are such loud dogs.
They Have A Pack Dog Mentality
Because Beagles were hunting dogs, they developed a strong pack dog mentality. This means they connected with the members of their pack to become one big family. In fact, their connections with humans and animals are so strong, Beagles are prone to develop separation anxiety.
The same can happen between your Beagle and cats, with your Beagle accepting the cat into its pack. If you socialize them properly, your Beagle will be very playful and protective over your cat.
They Are Easy To Train
Beagles are quite intelligent dogs, a trait that helped them in their hunting past. But they’ve also adapted a stubborn trait. This means that training them will take persistence. There is a shortcut to training Beagles, and that is positive reinforcement.
Beagles are known to love food, and using treats to motivate their training will surely help. One problem here is that they are prone to obesity, so you will need to watch out for how much treats you offer.
What To Consider Before The First Meeting
Before making a choice, consider the benefits and drawbacks of getting a cat. It will help you decide whether you want to follow through on your choice.
The Beagle’s Past Behavior
Knowing the positives and negatives of your Beagle will aid you in your decision to bring a new cat home. Has the dog shown aggressive behavior in the past and is it known to chase the neighbor’s cat? If you are sure that your Beagle will act nice around the cat, then go through with your decision.
The Cat’s Past Behavior
Even though some Beagles like cats, some cats don’t like Beagles. This is why you should familiarize yourself with the history of the cat you want to take home. Ask the shelter, or the previous owner if the cat is prone to aggression toward dogs. A cat that hasn’t been socialized might attack your pup.
Other Pets In The Home
If you have more than one pet at home already, you should really think about getting another one. If you have two Beagles in your home, you know that they are a pack and very protective of each other. Even though they might accept a new cat, at first they might act out with territorial aggression toward the intruder.
The Age Of The Beagle And The Cat
Getting a new cat is only a good idea once the Beagle reaches the age of 18 months. At that point, you should’ve trained and socialized it well enough. The cat you get should be around 12 weeks old and have enough experience in the world. Follow the rule to get an adult cat for an adult Beagle and a kitten for a Beagle puppy.
The Beagle’s Training Level
If you spent enough time training and socializing your Beagle, it should be perfectly fine with meeting new animals. Make sure to teach basic commands like “stop”, “stay”, and “leave it” so you can control it if anything goes array. Have some treats in hand to take its attention away from the cat if it becomes aggressive.
Introducing Beagles With Cats
If you’ve made the decision to bring a new cat to your home, there are a few things to do to make the introduction go smoothly.
Introduce Them To The Scents
Start by letting the animals sense each other’s scents and presence. This is a good way to start an introduction between them because both are known for their heightened scent perception. Also, Beagles are smelly and the cat will be able to sense one in the home.
To do this, you can first try rubbing a piece of clothing or a towel on the cat and then introducing it in the Beagle’s sleeping space. The same can be done in the opposite manner. Personal toys will also get the job done.
Feed Them Behind A Closed Door
Another good way to make the animals get used to each other scents is to use feeding time. Place their personal bowls on the opposing sides of one door and call both pets to eat.
Eating next to one another will let them get accustomed to each other’s presence, before getting to see each other. This decreases food aggression that is possible to happen if you let them eat together from the beginning. This is because both animals are protective of their food.
Meet At A Neutral Location
Having your Beagle and cats in the same place for the first time should be done at a neutral location. You should do this after they’ve acclimated to each other’s scents. The neutral territory is picked to prevent territorial aggression.
Get your Beagle on a leash and have a few treats ready. Then let the cat in the same place, keeping the door open as an escape route. Let it approach the Beagle and see what happens. These visits should last around 15-20 minutes and be repeated 3-4 times a day.
Feed Them In The Same Room
Once the pets have used to seeing each other in the short meetings, start putting their food bowls in the same room. Make sure they are on opposite sides of the room. Make feeding time the same for both to get them to eat simultaneously. This helps develop a pack mentality and stop food aggression.
If you feed one pet before the other, they might feel like one is superior to the other. This will not go well as animals also get jealous and have a need to feel dominant.
Leave The Unsupervised For A Short Time
Once you get your Beagle and kittens to get along, you can start leaving them unsupervised for short amounts of time. Check up on them every 10-20 minutes to see if everything is going okay. If the cat feels threatened, make sure you leave a door open so it may flee.
Consider buying a pet camera if you believe your Beagle behaves differently when you aren’t home. Then, from wherever you are, you will track its behavior. You can eventually begin leaving your dogs alone for extended periods of time.
So Are Beagles Good With Cats?
Beagles have a hunting dog history. Their high prey drive causes them to pursue smaller animals in the hopes of catching them. So, it seems sensible that they would be a cat’s worst enemy. Yet, this is untrue.
Beagles are outgoing, kind, and gentle dogs who like interacting with other animals and people. Because they used to hunt in packs, they create strong bonds and look out for one another. Also, they are relatively simple to train and made to behave nicely with other animals.
Be sure you are familiar with the cat’s age and past before deciding to bring it home. That also applies to your Beagle. Then you can begin introducing them to one another gradually. Start by acclimating them to one other’s scents before beginning a face-to-face meeting. They ought to discover how to coexist and perhaps even become friends.
Will my Beagle eat the cat’s litter?
Beagles are unfortunately known to eat cat litter. Although it’s not generally harmful, this can occasionally result in serious intestinal problems. Make sure the cat litter is put away where the Beagle won’t be able to get it.
Will Beagles chase cats?
Beagles are good with cats but they have the instinct to chase after them. If they are friends, this will only be a game. If you are worried they might get hurt, train the Beagle to avoid doing that.
What are other dog breeds good with cats?
Besides Beagles, a few other dog breeds are known to get along with cats. Golden Retrievers, Labrador Retrievers, Pugs, Papillons, Collies, and Basset Hounds are mostly known to be good with cats.