Are corgis and cats natural enemies? Yes, they are--but it doesn’t have to be that way. You can condition these two beloved pets to coexist.
Many households have proven that cats and corgis can become best friends. Stay tuned to find out how.
The Age-Old Question: Why Do Corgis and Cats Dislike Each Other?
Centuries ago, cats and dogs weren’t as pampered as they are today. Dogs descend from wolves, so when two dogs confront each other over food, one will naturally back down due to their natural pack instincts. These instincts let a dog know if their opponent is more dominant.
On the other hand, cats descend from lone predators and aren’t pack animals. They’re more cautious when they approach food but less likely to back away once they feel safe. When these two clash, they fight like...well… cats and dogs.
If you’ve heard these two fur balls fight, you know how loud they can get. Both of them will try to intimidate their opponent verbally by growling, hissing, barking, meowing, or spitting. Furthermore, these battles can be drawn out for hours.
To make your corgi love your cat and vice-versa, you’ll have to understand their behavioral patterns. Learn more about their temperaments below.
Corgi Temperament 101
Decades ago, people owned corgis strictly as working dogs to help herd cattle and other livestock. Nowadays, these adorable pups are now family pets, but they still have that hard-working spirit of their ancestors. Their tiny bodies are packed with larger than life personalities. However, much like with any dog, animal, or human, their character varies, but they’re generally cheerful animals.
Corgis are happy and attentive dogs, and they’ll want to be a part of everything you do. From laying down after a long day of work, to cooking, to family gatherings, you can count on your fur baby to be right by your side. Most corgis are eager to please and are a bundle of energy, but it doesn’t take much to tire them out.
Don’t let a corgi’s companionship fool you, however. They’re also independent and intuitive. If you don’t give them proper dog training, they’ll train you. Corgis are known to form their own set of rules and may grow stubborn if you don’t provide them with attention. Some of them even become bossy, but they aren’t malicious; they’re just strong-willed, so they’ll want to do things their own way.
It’s essential to establish your roles in the relationship in a loving way so that they know where they stand. Thanks to their outgoing personalities, corgis are thought of as big dogs on stubby legs.
Cat Temperament 101
Although most corgis share similar personalities, cats are on a different planet. A cat’s personality will depend on its breed, but for the most part, cats are an enigma with four paws. We only know three things that can be said about cats for certain:
- You will never fully comprehend your cat.
- Cats are a rare source of unconditional love, something we all crave.
- Your life would be boring without your cat. After all, who else runs around your house past midnight?
If you’re a cat parent, you need to understand the cat hierarchy. Most multi-cat households have a pecking order, which can change monthly.
Understanding the Alpha Cat: Alpha cats will exert their dominance over the perceived subordinate cats in your home. Sadly, this dominance can lead to catty encounters when another cat threatens its dominance. Cats are quick to hiss and swat others if they’re annoyed.
Moreover, alpha cats often try to assert dominance over their owners, causing awkward situations. Although you don’t want to be a bully, you shouldn’t allow your cat to bully you, other kittens, and your dog babies.
Understanding the Beta Cat: Second in line to the alpha cat is the beta cat, but this doesn’t mean the beta cat wants to be the ring leader. However, when the alpha cat is absent, the beta cat may try to establish secondary dominance.
How to Socialize Corgis and Cats
1. Personality is Everything
When it comes to cats and corgis, the most important factor to take into account is their personalities and energy levels. For instance, if your cat is territorial, they may not like sharing a room with a skittish corgi. Conversely, an aging corgi wouldn’t appreciate sharing their space with a rambunctious kitten.
If your two fur babies don’t end up being a personality match, you should have a backup plan. At a minimum, you need to set up a household arrangement that keeps the two separated until you can socialize them. If you’re adopting a new pet, it pays off to do your homework and reach out to the shelter and ask the staff if they have lived with other families before.
2. Train Your Corgi
To set your corgi up for success with kittens, you’ll need to teach them to control their impulses. Do they jump onto your table when it’s dinner time? Are they frantic when they hear a squeaky toy? If the answer to these questions is “yes,” it’s best to keep your corgi separated from cats, at least initially.
Don’t let your corgi meet your cat until they can stay put. Even then, you’ll want to keep a leash in hand during the first cat-dog encounters.
3. Give Your Cat Its Own Territory
Cats need a protected space—a base camp, if you will—that’s just for them. Not only will this create a refuge for them away from your corgi, but it creates a safe space around your home, too. After all, cats love clawing couches, jumping on countertops, and knocking items over. Additionally, cats are natural climbers, so the more vertical space you add, the better. Invest in tall cat trees, shelves, or place an extra cat bed on top of your bookcase.
4. Let Corgis and Cats Follow their Noses
It’s best to let your cat and corgi sniff each other’s bedding and toys before a face-to-face introduction; this will satisfy their curiosity, preventing potential turf battles.
5. Carefully Plan Your First Cat and Corgi Meeting
Much like humans, cats and dogs have only one good chance to make a solid first impression. Luckily, they both love eating, which can help them love each other. Schedule the first cat-corgi meeting during mealtime, but keep your corgi on a leash and both of them on opposite sides of a closed door.
They won’t be able to see each other, but they can smell each other while munching on their favorite foods. Best of all, they’ll begin to associate this smell with food, building trust. Keep them separated for a few weeks before introducing visual simulation. By the time you leave the door open, they should be peacefully eating side-by-side.
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