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Cats and dogs are by far the most popular domestic pets we humans adopt. Some people are cat people. Others are dog people. A great many of us love them equally. But sometimes, we find that wanting both in our lives feels risky.

This is partly because of a long-held popular belief that cats and dogs do not get along – there have even been tons of cats vs. dogs movies. It’s unclear where this idea began, but it has been perpetuated despite vast amounts of evidence to the contrary.

There are millions of homes around the world where people watch cats and dogs coexist. Part of this has to do with nature, but a lot also has to do with how we, as humans, create our environments to facilitate it.

Here’s the lowdown on cats and dogs and where to find more information on specific aspects here at The Discerning Cat.

Cats vs. Dogs: Why Do Dogs Hate Cats?

So, do dogs hate cats at all? There is a long-standing perception that cats and dogs have been mortal enemies since the dawn of time. It’s a somewhat unfortunate situation because it happens to be an unfair oversimplification of the relationship.

In reality, there’s no particular reason why modern domestic cats and dogs would be mortal enemies. The friction just happens to be a matter of communication.

A Brief History of Cats, Dogs, and Humans

From what we know about our history, cats and dogs came to be domesticated independently of each other. It seems that both realized that there were benefits to hanging around humans, the main ones being safety, warmth, and food.

Cats or dogs were never directly predatory toward each other. However, they did sometimes compete for food. Today, in domesticated versions of the animals, food competition isn’t really a factor. But differences in behavior play a large part in creating conflict between the two species.

Now, keep in mind that every cat and dog is an individual. There is no guarantee that any particular cat or dog will be comfortable with the other. With all dogs and cats’ homes, the best chance of success comes when you introduce both together as puppies and kittens. Growing up together, in other words, is the best possible scenario.

Compatibility of Specific Cats & Dogs

Some cats seem to have developed a reputation when it comes to their relationship with other pets, especially dogs.

Maine Coon cats, for example, are really large cats. They are larger than many medium-sized dogs, and their behavior can be boisterous and dominating. That said, Maine Coons are amazingly friendly! They tend to be patient, as well. Perhaps this is because they are so large, so other animals seldom mess with them.

Siamese cats developed an odd and unfair reputation for being standoffish and aggressive in certain circumstances. In truth, they are great with other pets and especially dogs, when properly socialized.

The playful but sometimes misunderstood nature of Siamese cats means they may be somewhat rambunctious. Unfortunately, the same behavior from dogs is usually seen as aggressive by the cat.

Nonetheless, it’s important to follow proper procedures when introducing dogs and Siamese cats and remember to be patient.

Specific Dogs and Cats

In a similar vein, certain dogs always get discussed when there is a concern about whether they might get along with cats.

Smaller Dogs and Cats

French Bulldogs, for example, are dogs that love to be in your company and on your lap when they can be. If your cat is similarly inclined, you may be faced with a competitive edge in the relationship. Frenchies also tend to get a little jealous, so early socializing between your French Bulldog and cats will be important here.

The generally happy nature of a Shih Tzu around cats may be a slightly better fit for a home.

Queen Elizabeth II’s favorite dogs, Pembroke Welsh Corgis, are stocky and confident dogs that love a good time. They also do well in packs, whether those packs are other dogs or even a few cats. They like to dominate a space, though a Corgi and a cat will get along if your cat doesn’t mind a bit of chaos.

Larger Dogs and Cats

Large dogs like Rottweilers naturally raise a sense of caution or fear. It seems they are easily able to harm a cat if they are so inclined. But like with any other dog, Rottweilers and cats can get along quite well.

Though large, Golden Retrievers are universally considered some of the most good-natured animals on the planet. These dogs love family, and they love other animals. They are eternally happy. Therefore, Golden Retrievers and cats could be a match made in domestic heaven.

As a working dog, a German Shepherd always seems to be taking notice of things around the house. It would regard other pets and people in the house as a family to be protected. That is, provided that just like any other dog, your German Shepherd and cats are properly socialized.

Poodles and Doodles and Cats

One of the main concerns around whether Poodles and cats get along is the energy level of Poodles, especially when it comes to their prey drive. Poodles tend to be very wary of other animals in their territory.

They are also known to instigate a tense situation or two if they happen to feel anxious. This may not be the best combo for first-time pet owners.

Goldendoodles are a crossbreed between a Golden retriever and Poodle. As a result, they tend to inherit the good nature of a Retriever. They are also smaller than traditional Goldens, making Goldendoodles and cats a possibly easier fit.

The combination of Miniature Toy Poodles and Labrador Retrievers is known as a Labradoodle. They have high energy and can be a little too much for an older cat, though. You may want to look into how to socialize a Labradoodle and cat.

So, as mentioned, there are countless homes all around the world where all cats and dogs get along perfectly fine once they understand each other.