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My dog bit my cat...

Posted by anicee (My Page) on
Sun, Aug 14, 11 at 17:37

On June 14th I posted on Murdoch: Adopting a dog ...wrong breed or not???...To be brief he's a hunting dog (Griffon de Korthals) that my brother couldn't keep anymore and I decided to take him. He's not a dog for me as I was explaining in my previous post but I am doing well with him or so I thought.

I have 2 other dogs and 11 cats (all rescued animals). From the start I could see there was some 'friction' between Murdoch and Sushi (the female cat that was bitten) but I was severe with Murdoch to behave correctly and it always worked he left her alone when I scolded him. A week ago I heard Murdoch yelped in pain and I rushed to see what it was and he was rubbing his eye with his paw so I thought...a cat scratched his eye...I thought it was Sushi but I am not certain. Fortunately he was scratched on the outside of his eye. Now today I noticed Sushi has a wound on her neck and there was blood in the house here and there and I was very upset when I saw her neck.
I'm in tne middle of packing, moving next week-end 1400km away with them all to a farmhouse on a few acres where I think it will be easier for us (me, cats and dogs). My house here is too small to accomodate us all and my yard is tiny. I don't want to take the side of the dog because I think it's unforgiven to have done that but I must confess I haven,t exercise him as I should have had and there's frustration on his part and nervousness too to see all those boxes and the furniture all against the walls.

I want it so much to work for him and for me. There's no problem with the dogs and the 10 other cats...Just an hour ago, Boots one of my male cats was lying down next to Murdoch and some cats rub themselves on his legs. My question is this: should I take the chance to work with him and keep him or do you think being a hunting dog he might one day just kill one of my cats? I know once I'm settled over there, he will get plenty of exercise so when he'll come in the house, he will be tired

Sorry for the long post, kind of exhausted and a bit shaken by what has happened. I was very surprised he did this to the cat. I have a vet appointment tomorrow. For the time being I flushed the wound several times with a serynge of lukewarm water and put Proviodine. I had some Clavamox so I gave her one pill today and the vet will probably prescribe some of that or Baytril or gave her an injection and shave her around the wound. I rescued cats that were bitten by cats and usually that's what the vet did. Never thought it would happen to my indoor cat.

Thank you,

Anicee


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: My dog bit my cat...

I think you'll see personality clashes in pets just as much as in people. But when you add a dog with a prey drive to the mix, and you're too busy to provide exercise and play, then you're asking for trouble. You have a LOT of pets already. Now the dog knows that it can attack a cat-whether you punish it or not-it won't be able to connect any punishment with its attack-your cats are in danger. Do the cats a favour and get that poor dog into a foster home where it's given the care it needs without endangering other pets. You can't be responsible for every homeless animal, let someone else have a turn. Good luck.


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RE: My dog bit my cat...

Thank you harebell for your input. I am so not neglecting this dog. I actually chose a house for my pets because I can't live without them and I am not a hoarder. I bought a big farmhouse on 5 acres and I am moving next week. It is hard right now because I am packing, once over there I will have time. I am retired and have all the time in the world for my animals, I don't travel. All my money goes to the welfare of my animals.

As for my cats, I was fostering them and was not able to find good homes so I kept them. My intention is not to get more cats or dogs. Murdoch was my brother's dog and he was to bring him at the SPCA at the worst time ever in the year in July when the shelters are overcrowded. I am not trying to defend myself but wanted to clarify some points.

Anicee


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RE: My dog bit my cat...

Here are some things you need to consider. I have 5 acres also but even with the one cat and one dog I can't let them out to run free.
I have neighbors close enough that I don't want the dog being an unwanted visitor plus, if my dog was caught chasing their livestock they have the right to shoot him. I also have coyotes....some large as wolves so I know my dog, not to mention the cat, don't stand a chance if they came across a coyote.
With a sight/scent hound such as your dog, you're going to need to keep control of him on your property. If you have the means to fence the property, then that's great, but if you can only fence the yard, then you're back to square one with a dog not getting the exercise he needs.

Another thought is how are you going to house them in the dead of winter? Will the dogs be able to get out and will you be able to get out with them for the exercise?

At the moment, I wouldn't trust him with your cats.
You've stated he's not the dog for you and I feel you're trying to convince yourself otherwise. You need to find a no-kill humane society and work with them or track down the rescue for the breed.
And IMO, the perfect owner would be someone that uses him for what he's bred for.


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RE: My dog bit my cat...

Those are all very good points to make. However......just because a dog is bred for the hunt, it does not make him necessarily aggressive toward smaller animals like cats. Pointing and retrieving are not the same as bred to fight or kill. My son's labradors and daughter's beagles are all very cat friendly. My little lurcher, however has come from a line of dogs with both sight-hound and terrier instincts. I'll never trust him around cats if I am not present and when I had adult cats, had to put them in another part of the house if we were not right there with him just to be sure.

We don't know what other interactions you have seen between the cats and Murdoch. Both of these sound like you are drawing conclusions. You are not for sure Sushi nailed Murdoch in the eye, and you didn't witness the cat being injured. Were there other instances you've had with him where you have seen him express aggression with your cats? It sounds like there may have been. A dog who has not been around cats will usually test the waters to see where he fits in socially and often a swipe or two by an indignant cat will resolve the pecking order.

All that being said, if this dog really does have aggressive tendencies he may never be safe to be around a cat. Some dogs are just not cat friendly....period whether it's breed related or not. Until you have resolved that question beyond any doubt, the dog should be crated if you are not in attendance and you've got to be really honest with yourself if you're putting your other animals in danger. There are good home situations for dogs like Murdoch and he'd fit in well. Given his unusual breed you may not have as hard a time as you think finding him a good fit with a responsible family. If you took him to spare him from a possible euthansia and give him a chance........he's not getting a fair shake if you put him in circumstances where he can't control his actions. When push comes to shove, if he does maim or kill another of your pets it won't be his fault........do you see what I mean? You put him in that situation as well as all your other pets and safety is just as important as food, shelter and love.


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RE: My dog bit my cat...

Yes I am privileged enough to have the means to fence 2 acres of field and some workers are already building the fence so it will be up when I get there. I also registered to have him start agility classes and this will start in October.
My cats will have their own outside enclosure too. Like I was saying I'm retired and am always at home with them. My pets don't sleep outside.
I was talking to a friend tonight who told me her dog bit one of her cats 3 years ago (she never told me) and it never happened again. I want to give the dog and myself a chance, it's too easy to just give the dog away to a hunter who might not be satisfied with him and the dog will end up tied up to a tree for the rest of his life.

Anicee


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RE: My dog bit my cat...

That's why I asked if you'd witnessed other acts of aggression. What happened may not have even involved sushi or murdoch. Being retired and at home doesn't always translate to being 'there' though does it because you didn't witness either incident happen. It can happen right under your nose as well. It only takes a few shakes of a powerful dog to break a cat's neck. It's over before you can even intercede.

The nervousness and excitement of the move might be upsetting him. It's hard to tell but I don't see how fencing and enclosures are going to ensure anything other than giving them all exercise and I don't know if that is the issue or not. I've done musical animals before and it's exhausting keeping certain ones apart. It's your call if you don't mind doing that.

I really feel for you because I know you're trying to do the right thing. You know that you don't have to necessarily find a home for him for hunting purposes, just because he's a hunting dog. I don't use my hunting dog to hunt. Neither do my kids use theirs for hunting. They're pets.

I don't think you want opinions either, just want to get it out of your system, maybe. The outcome is all going to hinge on your making the right choices, and I certainly hope you are and all works out well. I would be very concerned however if a cat received enough of a wound to be seen by a vet. If it was dog bite, it wasn't a warning nip.


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RE: My dog bit my cat...

OK, I was just going to read this and not comment, but I have to.

I have a mini schnauzer that just one time snapped at my cat because he thought the cat was going to take a bone he was chewing on. I gave him a serious hollering at and he completely understood that he was in the wrong. He has not bothered that cat again - even though the cat will sometimes annoy him. He knows better now.

I think your new place sounds ideal and you should give it a try. You are probably anxious about this move, with good reason, and maybe the animals are picking that up. It will all be over soon. Don't make any permanent decisions until you have moved and you can assess the situation. Because you are retired, they all have your full attention, even when you are busy. Give it a little time.

I hope Sushi is ok. They will both have learned from this.


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RE: My dog bit my cat...

Your best bet is to teach the dog basic training ASAP, and know once you get to the farm house you will need to leash walk your dog every day at least an hour a day. In the mean time keep them seperated and if you can not do that easily while in the house - Leash your dog to you. That will help in a number of ways.


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RE: My dog bit my cat...

Murraysmom and Mazer, thank you so much for your replies. I was almost afraid to look at the posts and regretted posting in the first place. People thinking I was ignorant or without a heart.

Sushi is doing o.k. but she did require stitches and some antibiotics. I explained to the vet I always had cats and dogs and it's the first time this happens to me and he told me: "see it as an accident, you have many pets, these things happen but keep an eye on them and he also told me to try to live in the present like them, not to anticipate anything bad, that it was a stressful period for all of us, that move etc...

My cats are all old..Sushi is the youngest at 6 but after that they range from 10 to 17. I realize 11 cats are a lot of cats and as they die, I will not be rescuing more or fostering more. Very hard to find good homes for older cats.

Thanks again...I shall be vigilent, more ascertive with Murdoch and of course he will get plenty of exercise and discipline.

Anicee


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RE: My dog bit my cat...

Atta girl!! I'm sure things will work out for you. Your heart is in the right place!! Hopefully Murdoch has learned that this is a very bad thing and won't do it again.


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