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Do Dogs Eat Cats? Tips If They Do & How To Stop

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Dogs are carnivores, so it’s not surprising that they might be interested in eating cats. After all, cats are small prey animals, and if dogs weren’t domesticated, a cat would be a high-protein meal. But do dogs eat cats in today’s world? What would make them do it? And what should you do if your dog eats your cat?

While most dogs won’t kill and eat a cat, it does happen. There are a few reasons why a dog might kill and eat a cat. The most common cause is the dog is hungry and sees the cat as prey. This is more likely to happen if the dog is feral or wild, but it can also happen with domestic dogs.

In this article, you’ll discover

  • The reasons why dogs might kill and eat cats
  • Strategies for preventing a dog from eating your cat
  • What to do if your dog does ingest a cat

Let’s dive in.

Do dogs eat cats

Do Dogs Eat Cats?

The simple answer to this question is yes, dogs do eat cats. While it’s not typical behavior, there are several reasons why a dog might kill and eat a cat. The most common cause is hunger.

Dogs are carnivores, and in the wild, they would hunt for their food. If a dog is hungry enough, it will see a cat as prey and attempt to kill and eat it.

This is more likely to happen with feral or wild dogs but can also occur with domestic dogs that aren’t well-fed.

Do Dogs Kill Cats?

The answer to this question is a little more complicated. While all dogs are carnivores, not all of them will kill a cat to eat it.

Aside from killing a cat to eat it, a dog might kill a cat if the dog is feeling threatened. This usually happens when the cat tries to defend itself by attacking the dog.

The dog might see the cat as a threat to its safety and attempt to remove the threat by killing it.

In addition, some dogs kill and eat cats out of boredom or curiosity. This is more likely to happen with puppies or young dogs that haven’t been adequately trained.

It’s the same reason dogs rip apart their favorite chew toys for fun! They might be bored and trying to play with the cat or curious about what’s inside the cat.

In some cases, dogs may not even mean to kill a cat. They’re simply playing and get a little too rough with them.

What To Do If Your Dog Eats Your Cat?

If your worst nightmare comes true and your dog does eat your cat or someone else’s, there are a few things you need to do.

The first thing you need to do is call your vet or a 24/7 online vet service if you cannot get in contact with your vet. They will be able to tell you if your dog is at risk of developing health problems from eating the cat.

You should also schedule your dog a visit for a check-up. The vet will be able to check for any signs of illness or injury after eating the cat.

Finally, you need to clean up the mess. This includes disposing of the cat’s body and cleaning up any blood or vomit. You should also sanitize the area where your dog ate the cat.

To properly dispose of the cat’s body, you can:

  • Bury it in the ground
  • Take it to a pet cemetery
  • Give it to a wildlife rehabilitation center

How to Prevent Your Dog from Killing Cats

If you’re worried about your dog eating your cat or someone else’s, you can do a few things to prevent it from happening.

Let’s start with stopping your dog from killing other people’s cats.

The first thing you should do is make sure your dog is well-fed. A full stomach will discourage your dog from seeing someone else’s cat as prey. You should also feed your dog high-quality food to give them all the nutrients they need.

You should also train your dog not to attack or chase cats. This can be done with positive reinforcement training using treats or praise.

To train your dog, you’ll want to make sure to always have control.

This means leaving a leash on them even when out in the backyard. This will give you control and help when training your dog to stop chasing after cats.

Obedience training takes hard work, consistency, and dedication.

Here are some steps you can take to train them:

  • Whenever your dog sees a cat, get their focus. If they pay attention to you, provide them a treat and praise!
  • Keep treating your dog till the cat goes away. When the cat leaves, give your dog a chew reward or toy, so they focus on the reward.
  • Repeat the above steps, and over time you’ll see your dog instinctively look up to you when they see cats.

Now, what about if you own a cat that will be living in the same household as a dog?

If you have a cat and are worried about your dog killing it, here are four tips to help ensure your dog and cat get along in the same household:

#1. Give Cats a Place To Get Away

Make sure your cat always has a place to getaway.

Preferably high up where your dog can’t reach.

That way, they’ll feel safe and secure when around the dog.

If you’re not able to give your cat their own space, or if they refuse to use it, you can also try using a baby gate to section off part of the house.

That way, your dog knows that that area is off-limits to them.

#2. Proper Introductions

If you’re introducing a dog to your cat, do it slowly and correctly.

Many people recommend doing a scent swap before ever introducing the two. This means giving your cat something that smells like your dog to sniff.

And giving your dog something that smells like your cat. This way, when they first see each other, it’ll feel somewhat familiar.

Next, you’ll want to have them meet each other in a ‘neutral’ environment.

Meaning neither considers the space their domain, like a park or a friend’s house.

Once they’ve gotten used to each other’s presence, you can slowly start letting them be in the same room together.

But always keep a close eye on them. If things start to get too rough, separate them again.

It may take a while, but eventually, they should be able to coexist peacefully. You definitely don’t want to rush or force the interactions.

#3. Introduce The Two Early

The younger you can have a cat and dog meet one another, the better.

If they’re both super young, they won’t know life without one another, which means they should have a lovely relationship.

Or at least tolerate one another.

The older they get and more used to life without another furry friend in the house, the more challenging adjusting will be.

#4. Tire Them Out First

The more pent-up energy the two of them have, the more likely something can go wrong when they get together.

Making sure both are tired, especially your dog can help ensure their interactions are kept calm and peaceful.

This won’t always be necessary.

But for the first few interactions, it’s a good idea to tire them out before putting them in the same room.

Once they get a feel for one another, they should be fine together regardless of pent-up energy.

Will My Dog Kill My Kitten?

Now that we’ve established that dogs do, in fact, eat and kill cats, let’s talk about if your dog kills your kitten.

The answer to this question is, unfortunately, maybe.

It really depends on the individual dog and their hunting/prey drive.

If you have a breed that was bred to hunt small prey and has a high prey drive, they’re more likely to kill a kitten.

Some dogs are naturally more gentle and easy-going, making them less likely to hurt or kill a kitten.

The best way to know for sure is to do a little research on your dog’s breed and see their natural tendencies.

It’s also important to note that dogs are trainable, so even dogs with high prey drive can be trained to get along with cats.

You should never leave the two alone together unsupervised for the first little while.

You can slowly start to do so over time as you get a feel for your dog’s behavior around the kitten.

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