Samoyeds are friendly, sociable dogs so you may be wondering if one will get along well with your cat. Or maybe the opposite — how will your cat like it if you bring home a Samoyed?
Samoyeds and cats can get along quite nicely — as long as you set some boundaries and introduce them properly. This means you do need to prepare before you bring your new animal home.
A Samoyed is a great addition to a family that already has a cat. But there are some important steps you need to do to prepare both animals for their new living situation.
Samoyeds And Their Relationship With Cats
Samoyeds are friendly dogs who love to have a close, social relationship with those they live with — including cats and other animals. Their breed history includes herding reindeers and other large animals, so for them to be around cats is typically fine.
How To Make Them Like Cats?
If you can introduce your Samoyed to a cat while they’re still very young, that’s the very best way to do it. An older Samoyed will likely still adjust to a living situation that includes a cat but they may require an adjustment period. Overall, Samoyeds are one of the best dogs for getting along with cats and other animals.
How To Help A Samoyed Become Adjusted To A Cat?
If you have an older Samoyed and would like to add a cat to your family there are a few things you should do to prepare your dog for the cat.
Create Separate Spaces.
Create a space in your home that your Samoyed can escape to if they feel like it. Put their bed there, as well as food bowls and a few favorite toys to make them as comfortable as possible so they feel safe. Help them feel comfortable in their special space for at least a week or so before you bring the cat home, if possible.
Create a Space for Your New Cat.
Put their new bed and toys (or the bed and toys they’re coming home with) into a space that’s not close to your Samoyed’s space.
Introduce Them Slowly.
Keep your cat and your Samoyed totally separate for the first day or two. Animals have amazing intuition and heightened senses so they will likely know there’s another animal in the house — this is enough for now.
After a few days introduce them slowly in a neutral space for a short period of time. If at all possible, put a screen or glass between them so they can see and probably smell each other but won’t be able to touch or interact with each other yet.
Once they’ve seen each other once or twice with no issues, it’s time to introduce your cat and Samoyed in person. Keep them both on leashes, if possible, so it’s easy to separate them if needed.
Each day you can extend the amount of time they interact with each other until they’re to the point where they can be together for longer periods without having to worry about them.
If your Samoyed and cat behave well with each other, offer them praise and treats so they know that’s the behavior you expect from them. Hopefully, they will remember this and continue their good behavior the next time they see each other.
Even if your Samoyed and cat seem to be getting along after a few visits, be cautious not to let your guard down and let them roam freely with each other for another few weeks, at least.
Let them play freely, but keep an eye on both of them and separate them if needed. Continue to offer praise for good behavior.
How To Help A Cat Get Along With A Samoyed?
Unlike the situation of adding a new cat to a home that already has a Samoyed, the opposite is not necessarily true. Cats tend to be extremely territorial and most will feel jealous and put out when another animal is added to their home — especially an animal as friendly and sociable as a Samoyed.
If you plan to bring a Samoyed into a home that already has a cat, you can follow the above instructions for introducing your animal — but be prepared for potential behavioral issues from your cat.
Samoyeds can be quite excitable when they think they have a new “friend” and may try to interact with your cat too quickly. Gently pull the Samoyed away to give the cat some space.
If your cat seems to be having a tough time adapting to a Samoyed in their home you should give them a lot of extra one on one time and remind them they have a safe space where the Samoyed is not allowed.
Most of the time a cat will eventually learn to at least tolerate a Samoyed in their home — but it may take some extra effort, especially if your cat hasn’t been around other animals before.
Creating The Best Living Situation For A Samoyed And A Cat
It’s important to give each animal its own space to rest and relax. And it’s very important to feed your cat and Samoyed in separate areas of your home. You need to monitor the amount they’re both eating, not to mention the fact that it can be quite dangerous for a dog to eat cat food.
Samoyeds And Other Small Animals
Although you should always keep them both on leashes or follow the above instructions until you know for sure how your Samoyed will react to these other animals.
The Importance Of Socializing Your Samoyed
You want your Samoyed to get along with other animals and people so it’s important to socialize them. Samoyeds are naturally social animals but it is important to help them along.
If you can start socializing your Samoyed when they’re a puppy that’s ideal, but you can still do it if they’re older — it just may take some extra time to see good results.
If you can, arrange to meet up some friends with dogs in a neutral space (like a park) and introduce the dogs while they’re still on leashes. Maybe start a few feet back so they can become aware of each other before you let them sniff around each other.
You can then make the same arrangement with cats and other animals, as well as children. Be careful about letting your Samoyed loose around a small child because they can become very excitable and inadvertently knock the child over or harm them as they’re trying to play.
Take your Samoyed to the park often so they can get used to seeing a lot of different types of people and animals while they’re still young.
Body Language To Pay Attention To In A Samoyed
You’ll get to know what your Samoyed wants and needs based on their individual body language, but here are a few things you should pay attention to:
Samoyeds aren’t known to be guard dogs and they are friendly and sociable and generally like everyone. So, if your Samoyed suddenly starts barking you should pay attention. Perhaps they sense danger or they may be injured or sick.
A dog’s tail can tell you so much. You likely know that a wagging tail means a dog is happy, but did you know that the faster their tail wags the happier they likely are? A slow-moving wag means your dog is a bit wary so that’s a sign you need to reassure your dog.
A lowered tail means your dog is feeling stress or fear, while a tail wagging high means they are happy and assertive. If you notice your dog has its tail lowered you should comfort them. It may mean they have done something wrong and are scared about how you’re going to react, or it could be due to something that has frightened them.
Samoyeds aren’t immune to the health issues that commonly occur in dogs, especially as they get older. These include hip dysplasia, diabetes, hypothyroidism, and even certain heart conditions.
If you notice your Samoyed is suddenly sluggish or looking like they’re in pain, consult your veterinarian. Most of the time these health conditions can be cured or managed if they’re caught early.