The 15 Best Cat-Friendly Dog Breeds
Ever hear the expression, “fighting like cats and dogs?” That’s not the type of situation you want going on in your home.
Contrary to their reputations, not all dogs are destined to become mortal enemies with the feline in your life. Plenty of pet owners report a peaceful coexistence at home — but when it comes to choosing the right dog to introduce to your cat, the breed matters.
Individual dogs and cats have different temperaments regardless of breed. Some enjoy being part of large, loud families while others prefer a quiet home. Your best chance of ensuring that your pets get along is introducing them around the same time so neither has a chance to become territorial.
There’s no way to predict if your pets will get along, but the following dog breeds have the highest likelihood of living in harmony with cats.
1. Bichon frise
This playful pup is small and social, and will almost certainly see the cat as just another playmate. Some cats may be wary of this aggressively friendly breed. But don’t be surprised when you catch your cat and your bichon frise engaged in some playful wrestling matches.
A Maltese behaves a lot like some cats — she likes curling up and napping for long stretches and cuddling in your lap. These traits make this tiny dog perfect for cat owners who are accustomed to low-maintenance pets who don’t require constant stimulation.
Next: Cavalier King Charles spaniel
3. Cavalier King Charles spaniel
These dogs are a little standoffish and respectful of other animals’ territories, meaning he’s not likely to infringe on the cat’s space. Cavaliers are also likely to get lonely or anxious if they’re left alone for long stretches, and a comforting presence such as another animal can help him feel more secure.
Even though this breed is large, they’re some of the most family-oriented dogs around and make excellent pets for anyone with kids or cats. Sweet, gentle, and loyal, boxers will accept the cat as just another member of the family.
Older cats typically do better with this breed simply because a kitten may feel intimidated by his size and strength.
This short-statured pup will see eye to eye with the cat of the house — literally.
Dachshunds are devoted, willful, and spirited, so they have a lot in common with cats. They don’t think of themselves as small or meek and they won’t allow themselves to get pushed around.
Next: German shepherd
6. German shepherd
German shepherds are one of the most intelligent dog breeds and are also easy to train. These large dogs make excellent guards for your home, but they take a cue from their master on whom to trust. If you say the cat is part of the family, your German shepherd will go along with it.
Energetic and happy, the poodle gets along with everyone — including the family cat. They’re smart, easy to train, and love nothing more than spending time with their families. All size poodles do well with cat-loving families.
Next: Cocker spaniel
8. Cocker spaniel
A cocker spaniel is both gentle and family oriented, making her a great friend for a feline. It’s hard not to fall in love with her sweet personality and passive, amiable nature.
Her natural curiosity mimics a cat’s — just beware of the mischief this dynamic duo may get into.
Who doesn’t a collie get along with? Kids, adults, other dogs, cats — he’s an amiable housemate and all-around treasured member of the family. This intelligent and sweet breed will melt just about anyone’s heart.
Next: Basset hound
10. Basset hound
This breed is extremely laid-back and isn’t likely to bother the cat very much. Just be warned that he won’t take kindly to being ignored in favor of any other animals, so be sure to give him plenty of snuggles along with your cat.
A beagle is social and friendly to all, including cats. His personality might be a little hyper for an older or more laid-back feline, but if you have a cat who might enjoy a good-natured wrestling match, this breed might be just what you’re looking for.
Next: Labrador retriever
12. Labrador retriever
Labs get along with everyone, even cats. Their amiable, easygoing nature is part of the reason this breed is consistently ranked among the most popular in the nation.
Next: Golden retriever
13. Golden retriever
Like labs, goldens are friendly, happy, enthusiastic, intelligent, social, and loyal to their families. They’re great at getting along with just about anyone and are most likely to become best friends with the family cat. Goldens are good with kids because they’re gentle despite their large size. This makes them a good pick for cats of all ages and temperaments.
It’s possible for your cat to weigh more than your tiny Pomeranian.
This breed is the ultimate lap dog and isn’t likely to mind sharing a bit of lap space with the cat. Their similar size makes them good potential companions.
Next: Shetland sheepdog
15. Shetland sheepdog
Shelties are intelligent and sweet, making them an easy addition to the cat-loving family. If your cat prefers to be left alone, be wary of this natural herder, who will most likely try to include him in every family gathering. But if you have a more social kitty, a Sheltie can be a great companion.
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