People often say that cats and dogs are the ultimate arch enemies and that they come from different planets.
However, these two species can easily co-exist under the same roof.
What’s more, they can be quite similar, especially if you take particular breeds for example.
Yes, there are cat breeds that act like dogs and there are canine breeds which happen to share temperament characteristics with feline furballs.
Whether you’re a dog lover who wants to get a dog-like cat or a pet parent who wishes to find a cat breed that will get along with your dogs, here’s a list of the most suitable kitty breeds for you.
The Best Dog-Like Cat Breeds For Puppy Lovers
The following cat breeds are well-known for their dog-like loyalty, appearances and overall temperament.
Famous for being a gigantic cat breed, the Maine Coon easily resembles a small dog. Well-suitable for apartments and families with children these kitties can be happy – and safe – with dog lovers who are first-time cat owners.
The Maine Coon is a sociable kitty with a playful, yet laid-back character. Due to their susceptibility to training you can easily teach them how to play fetch and respond to various commands. Furthermore, they have water resistant fur and they require less maintenance than you might think.
If you’re looking for a playful puppy-like cat breed, then the Abyssinian one is definitely a suitable choice. Extremely curious and always willing to be active, these athletic kitties will make great companions to all kids. They’re just as demanding in terms of social interaction as a young dog is, but they’re also dog-like intelligent.
Teaching an Abyssinian how to walk on a leash is quite doable. And when you don’t have enough time to play with the Abyssinian kitty, it will always find entertainment on its own.
Dogs are excellent swimmers by default, but so are Turkish Vans.
Shocking, isn’t it?
These large creatures do tend to act like pups in a variety of ways. Apart from actively seeking swimming and play sessions, they can easily be trained to respond to your commands. The breed is rare, but it provides a great blend of dog-like and cat-like qualities.
Regardless of how dog-like a cat may seem, the two species have significantly different nutritional requirements.
You mustn’t feed cats with dog food and you definitely shouldn’t try feeding canines with cat food.
On top of that you can’t give both species the same vitamins or supplements.
If you’re a first-time cat owner, you need to set aside everything you know about the canine dietary requirements. Treating a dog-like cat like a dog, especially with food, will pose a fatal risk to the kitty.
See our Cat Food section in the menu bar at the top of this page
The Cat Breeds That Get Along Best With Dogs
Although the Maine Coon and the Abyssinian can also get along with dogs, here are the best cat breeds that will easily make friends with a canine.
Another large cat breed, the Ragdoll, is well-known for its extremely tolerant and laid-back temperament. These kitties aren’t picky when it comes to their food, sharing the attention or making new friends.
Amicable, loyal and super adorable, the Ragdoll is the ideal cat for a dog companion.
Ragdolls are quite affordable and susceptible to training. They won’t have problems getting along with a canine pet or with small children. They also have a long lifespan and love being picked up and carried around like a lap dog. Unfortunately, there’s one big downside to this breed – it requires a lot of grooming and de-shedding!
Gorgeous, intelligent and loyal, the blue-eyed Birman will also get along with dogs. It actively seeks social interaction and will want to make friends with other pets. Birman kitties can easily understand commands and they are quite low-maintenance. Overall healthy and not tempted by high perches, the Birman is a great pet for dog owners looking to adopt a cat.
Manxes and Cymrics are bob-tailed cousins. They are sociable, yet tame, unlike many independent feline breeds. They’re known for being amenable to training and you can even teach them how to play fetch with a dog.
With their mild temper and friendly nature, Manxes and Cymrics won’t refuse a canine pal.
Introducing A New Cat To Your Dog
Not all cats and dogs will get together even if both species are from friendly and tolerant breeds.
However, introducing the animals to one another in a safe, comforting and controlled environment is the key step to ensuring no accidents will occur.
Here are the basic steps to take when introducing them:
- Isolation – When you bring your cat home, put it in a room away from the dog and keep the door closed. In this room, you should have a bed and/or crate, litter box, food, toys, and anything else to minimize your cat’s chances of feeling stressed. Also make sure there’s nothing in there for the cat to break or chew through (like wires). Visit regularly and talk calmly and soothingly to the cat.
- Smell Introduction – After a few days isolated, you can introduce the dogs’ smell to the cat and vice versa. Take a clean towel and rub it onto your dog. Then, bring the towel into your cat’s room and leave it in there for the cat to smell for awhile. Take another clean towel and rub your cat with it, then bring it to your dog.
- Sight Introduction – A few days later, after they’ve had a chance to smell each other, you can introduce them to each other as long as there is a safe space between them so the dog can’t lunge at the cat. We recommend putting up a baby gate on the door to your cat’s room. Then, you can open the door, and bring your dog to the entrance of the room. Make sure you have control of your dog so he doesn’t become aggressive, and remove him immediately if he begins to get aggressive. If possible, let them smell each other through the child gate.
- Let Your Cat Roam – Take your dog outside or have a family member take him for a walk. Let your cat explore the rest of the house by herself. Do this a few times. After she’s had a chance to poke around, put her safely back in her room.
- Free Introduction – Another few days later (take it slow!), you can introduce them to each other in the main portion of the house. Make sure you have control of the situation such that you can remove the dog or stop them from clawing/biting each other in case they’re not ready to be introduced yet. Some people recommend having the dog on a leash, but this might make him more likely to get riled up.
- Don’t Overreact! – If your dog gets anxious or aggressive, stay calm and deliver firm commands so as not to excite him. If you get angry or stressed, and your dog senses any sort of excitement when he’s around your cat, he’ll begin to associate excitement and aggressive behavior with being around your cat.
Here’s a video outlining some of these steps:
It may not be easy, but it’s possible to have a loving, caring, and safe home that houses your dog AND a new cat!