Do American Shorthair Cats Get Along With Dogs?

 American Shorthair cats were brought over on the Mayflower. They were breed to be working cats on farms and ships. If you want to know more about American Curl cats, check out my article American Shorthair Cat: Facts & Trivia

Are American Shorthair Cats Dog Friendly? 

American Shorthair cats are sturdy and easy going. They get along well with other pets and most dogs. American Shorthair cats variety activity is to perch on a windowsill and stare at the birds but they may occasionally play with your dog. They will not pick a fight with your dog and they are sturdy cats that can hold their own with most dogs. 

Introducing a Dog to Your American Shorthair Cat House 

If you are bringing a new dog into your house and already have an American Shorthair cat, then things will go well if the dog is not aggressive. Your American Shorthair cat is likely to generally ignore the new puppy. 

For household harmony, it is important to provide both of your pets attention. It is also important to be sure to feed the dog in a different place than your American Shorthair cat. Also remember that cats should not eat dog food and vice versa. For more on what to feed you cat and why not to feed them dog food, check out my post What Should I Feed My Cat?

As an example of why you should be sure to feed your cat and dog in separate places. I had a Soft Coated Wheaton terrier who was as docile, floppy, and lovable as could be, but if she felt her food was threatened she transformed into Dr. Jekyll. She hardly had any teeth, so generally it was a lot of bluster but no bite. Unfortunately, I counted on this one time too often and she did actually hurt another bigger but older dog. Causing me much embarrassment and costing me some money also. 

It is important to make sure your American Shorthair cat has a safe space. American Shorthair cats are good climbers, birders and mousers, so a safe place up high where the dog cannot follow would be ideal. If this is not sufficient, a cat door can provide a safe escape where the dog cannot follow. 

Note that if you are introducing an older dog, such as a rescue dog this is a whole different story. Experts have suggested that the people at the shelter can usually tell you if a rescue dog will get along with your American Shorthair cat. Be realistic about whether an older dog can adjust to a home with your American Shorthair cat. In general, the older the dog the more likely this situation will not work out. 

Introducing Your American Shorthair Cat to a Dog 

If you are bringing an American Shorthair cat into your house that already has a dog, you first need to be realistic about your dog’s temperament. If your dog is highly territorial or aggressive, then it is unlikely that the dog and cat will ever get along and worse one of them may get injured. You also may get injured trying to separate them. 

Assuming your dog has the proper temperament, then you should introduce your American Shorthair cat to your dog slowly. Do not just throw them together. Over time in most houses with a cat and a dog, the two basically ignore each other. 

The points stated above about providing attention to both animals, providing a safe place for your American Shorthair cat, and feeding them in separate spots also apply in this case. 

Dog Breeds That Don’t Like Cats 

As I was researching this topic, I wondered if there were certain breeds of dogs that don’t get along with cats. Sure enough there are a number of dog breeds that are generally recognized as not doing well with cats. 

In general, the breeds that do not do well with cats are hunting dogs that will see the cat as prey or are highly territorial. For instance, a Whippet is likely to see a cat as prey, much like a rabbit and chase your cat. Whippets are very fast with peak speeds of around 56 kph (35 mph) and also very agile, so your cat is unlikely to be able to outrun a Whippet. 

Here is a list of dog breeds that people say do not get along with cats. 

 Manchester Terrier 
 Bluetick Coonhound 
 Afghan Hound 
 Bedlington Terrier 
 Standard Schnauzer 
 Australian Shepherds 
 *Cavalier King Charles Spaniels 
* Dachshunds 
 *Golden Retrievers 
 *Labrador Retrievers 

* These dogs I found on both the lists of ‘dog breeds that do get along with cats’ and ‘dog breeds that do well with cats’. I am inclined to believe that the Retrievers will actually do well with cats. 

Dog breeds that do particularly well with cats 

*Golden Retriever 
*Labrador Retriever 
Bichon Frise 
Shetland Sheepdog 
Basset Hound 
Boston Terrier 
*Cavalier King Charles Spaniel 
German Shepard 
Cocker Spaniel 

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