How to Keep Your Boston Terrier from Chasing Cats

Terriers in general tend to be energetic and playful little dogs which sometimes makes them a challenge to train. Many terriers also exhibit stubborn tendencies and may not always get along with other dogs. Boston Terriers are, for the most part, friendly and affectionate little dogs but they do exhibit some common terrier tendencies including an affinity for chasing small animals. Boston Terriers are often able to get along with cats, but in some cases their terrier traits shine through. Keep reading to learn how to keep your Boston Terrier from chasing cats.

Introducing Your Boston Terrier to Cats

For the most part, Boston Terriers are good with cats when they are raised together in the same household. If you already have a cat when you bring your Boston Terrier home for the first time, however, you might have some trouble. To make sure that things go smoothly, take some basic precautions when making your initial introductions – here are some tips:

  • Feed and walk your Boston Terrier before the introduction to ensure that he stays calm – you want to work off his excess energy so he doesn’t get overly excited.
  • Bring your dog and cat together in a neutral room and close the door to keep them in, but don’t force them to interact.
  • Let your Boston Terrier and your cat observe each other and wait for one of them to get curious enough to approach the other.
  • As your dog and your cat start to interact, reward them both with praise and treats to encourage good behavior – it may take several sessions to get to this point.
  • Be patient and let your pets take their time getting used to each other – if your cat is particularly skittish it might help to put your dog in a crate so your cat can observe and approach him without being nervous.

The sooner you socialize your Boston Terrier to cats, the better. Puppies are the most impressionable during their first three to six months of life, so really make socialization a priority with your puppy to ensure that he grows into a well-adjusted, obedient adult dog.

Tips for Keeping the Peace

By following the tips in the last section to properly introduce your Boston Terrier to your cat, you can greatly reduce the risk for problems. If your dog continues to chase your cat, however, you might have to take additional steps to keep the peace. Most importantly, supervise interactions between your pets as much as possible so you can step in if a problem arises. Second, make sure that your cat has a comfortable place where he can retreat to if he wants to get away from the dog. It may also help for you to give your Boston Terrier some extra training – teaching him an “Off” or “Leave It” command will allow you to call him off if he starts antagonizing your cat.

With proper socialization and training, your Boston Terrier and your cat will get along fine – they may even become best friends! Just keep in mind that every pet has his own unique personality and temperament, so there is no guarantee that your pets will all get along. With time and patience, however, you can work with them to establish a peaceful harmony, if not a friendship.

Photo credit: Jeffrey Schwartz Photography