Home > Mom's Life > Family Relationships > Pets > Dog Breeds > Dogs with Other Pets
|

Dogs with Other Pets

Dogs can and do live peacefully with all sorts of other pets, from white mice and bunny rabbits to parrots and ferrets, as well as with cats and farmyard critters. The secrets to a peaceable kingdom are patience and caution—give them time and keep them safe.

Introduce your puppy or dog to your other pets carefully. The last thing you want is for anyone to be frightened or hurt. Be sure that a responsible adult is in a position to intervene immediately whenever your pup or dog interacts with the other animal until you're certain they're safe together. Remember, when different species meet, they have to learn how to communicate with one another.

Be reasonable about what you ask. Your dog may love and cherish your child's hamster, but if your dog was bred to hunt and your hamster skitters across the floor, the instinct to chase and kill could cause a family tragedy. If you have a puppy, teach him from the start to be gentle with other animals, particularly those who have no way to escape or fight back. If you have an adult dog and want to introduce a new animal to the household, be cautious. Give your dog time to get used to the idea of another animal in his space. If he's never met an animal of this kind before, let him sniff and watch while you hold the newcomer, or while it's in a cage.

Remember, too, that even if he's a lot bigger than the other animal, your dog could be hurt in an encounter gone wrong. More than one puppy has lost an eye to a feline swat, and I recently heard of a dog who lost part of his nose to a parrot. So watch both animals, and be alert to signs of fear or unhappiness that could lead to aggression.

Happily, once the introductory period is over, most dogs get along well with other pets, and together they enrich our lives.

More on: Pets

|

Excerpted from The Complete Idiot's Guide to Getting and Owning a Dog © 2003 by Sheila Webster Boneham, Ph.D. All rights reserved including the right of reproduction in whole or in part in any form. Used by arrangement with Alpha Books, a member of Penguin Group (USA) Inc.

To order this book visit Amazon's web site or call 1-800-253-6476.


stay connected

Sign up for our free email newsletters and receive the latest advice and information on all things parenting.

Enter your email address to sign up or manage your account.

Facebook icon Twitter icon Follow Us on Pinterest

editor’s picks

get ready for school!

We’ve got your
shopping list,
lunch menu,
and more.

GO

highlights

Printable Fall Fun To-Do List
Celebrate the cooler weather with this printable checklist of fun fall activities for your whole family.

Kindergarten Readiness App Wins Gold
Our Kindergarten Readiness app won the Gold Award of Excellence in the educational category at the 2014 Communicator Awards. This valuable checklist comes with games and activities to help your child practice the essential skills she needs for kindergarten. Download the Kindergarten Readiness app today!

Top 10 Care Package Items for College Students
Show your college student that you love and miss her by mailing a care package full of dorm room essentials and comforting treats. Whether it's her birthday, exam time, or just because, get care package ideas to brighten her day.

Find Today's Newest & Best Children's Books!
Looking for newly released books for your child? Try our new Book Finder tool to search for new books by age, type, and theme, and create reading lists for kids!