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Are Boston Terriers Good with Cats? The Surprising Answer!

Jessica Kim

By Jessica Kim

Pied Boston Terrier in basket bed with Bengal cat

Boston Terriers are happy-go-lucky dogs with friendly temperaments. Their easygoing nature makes them wonderful family dogs, and they can often learn to live happily with other dogs and cats.

Your best chance of success is raising a Boston Terrier puppy with a kitten. However, there are some things you can do to help your Boston Terrier and cat learn to live together. Here’s what you need to know about Boston Terriers and cats.

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Boston Terriers and Cats

Boston Terriers can have a strong prey drive. They can also become easily distracted and want to chase small animals. However, they tend to get along well with other dogs and pets that are similar in size. After they go through their initial intrigue, they usually learn to leave cats alone and won’t try to chase them.

So, if you take the time to introduce a Boston Terrier to a cat properly, there’s a high chance of success. The encounter will also depend on the temperament of the cat, so it’s important to start with a friendly cat to encourage building a positive association between both animals.

How to Introduce Boston Terriers to Cats

Red Boston Terrier
Image Credit: safepaws, Pixabay

The key is to work in small increments. A Boston Terrier’s first encounter with a cat shouldn’t even have the cat in view. By working slowly, you’ll help both animals get used to each other without compromising their feelings of safety. So, make sure to be patient and work within your pets’ comfort zones.

Keep Pets in Separate Rooms

The first thing you’ll want to do is keep the Boston Terrier and cat in separate rooms. They’ll still be aware of each other’s presence because they’ll be able to hear and smell each other.

Keep them separate for a few days and be mindful of their behavior. Look for any signs of discomfort or fear from each animal. Once both animals return to a calm state, you can proceed with introductions.

Introduce Pets with a Gate Between Them

Keep both pets separated by either a clear door or gate. It can be helpful to keep your Boston Terrier on a leash in case it tries to chase or bark at the cat.

Allow the animals to approach each other on their own as calmly as possible. You can reward them with their favorite treats every time they look at each other or walk closer to each other. Make sure to check your own body language and tone. By keeping calm, you’re communicating to the animals that there’s no need to feel anxious or unsafe.

Boston Terrier puppy and gray cat peering through torn wall paper
Image Credit: Zakharova_Elena, Shutterstock

Have Both Animals Eat Near Each Other

Once both animals have seen each other several times, you can try to have them eat near each other. Keep the gate between them but set up their feeding stations a safe distance away from the gate. You may need to start far away and gradually slide their food bowls closer to each other based on the comfort level of each animal.

A good sign is when both animals are able to eat near each other. This means that they feel safe and unthreatened by the other’s presence.

Keep Boston Terrier Leashed

Once both your Boston Terrier and cat are comfortable with the gate between them, you can close the gap a little more by keeping them in the same room. Keep your Boston Terrier leashed and let your cat roam around the room.

Continue to give each pet their favorite treats every time they look at each other or walk closer to each other. Once your Boston Terrier and cat show calm body language, you can unhook your Boston Terrier’s leash. You may need to hold your dog if it tries to rush over to your cat. Gradually loosen your hold on your dog and be prepared to intervene if either animal starts to show signs of discomfort.

Boston Terriers
Photo credit: mujipanda, Pixabay

Supervise Initial Interactions

It’s important to keep these interactions short and just a few minutes long. Animals can also act unpredictably, especially when facing new situations. So, it’s important to always supervise your Boston Terrier and cat as they get used to each other.

You can set up interactions multiple times a day until both animals get used to each other. Remember to be patient, as it can take several weeks to months for them to learn how to coexist.

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Boston Terriers are known to have high chances of success with living with cats. However, this doesn’t mean that they’ll automatically get along with every new cat it meets.

Gradual introductions and socializations can help both Boston Terriers and cats immensely. So, make sure to take your time and proceed with patience. It’s best to go slow and steady to ensure that both animals feel safe and comfortable around each other.

Featured Image Credit: Nailia Schwarz, Shutterstock

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