Which cat breeds are best with dogs?

In fairness, you cannot list the cat breeds that are most likely to get along with dogs. It is not as if breeders of one breed work together to a hidden bred standard which says: ‘this breed must get on with dogs’. You never see that in cat association breed standards. However, in the interests of providing a complete answer, even a conventional one which is arguably misleading, at the end of the article I list some cat breeds which might be best with dogs.

Any cat of any cat breed might get along with a dog very nicely if that cat has been socialized to dogs during those very important formative weeks (2-7 weeks). It’s not about a cat breed getting along with dogs. It’s about individual cats getting along with dogs. This, of course, also brings in rescue cats (today is National Adopt A Shelter Pet Day).

Preparing to be first time pet owner
Cat and dog getting along great.. Photo: public domain.
Two useful tags. Click either to see the articles:- Toxic to cats | Dangers to cats

So, for example, if a cat breeder ensures that the cats that she breeds are socialized to a dog because she happens to have a dog in her home then all her cats should get along with dogs in the future. Normally, the adopter will do the cat-to-dog socialization. It has to be done gently. Also as Elisa says: “We’ve just always had dogs that were calm and didn’t mind living with cats”. The dog’s character is crucial too.

It’s always the same. It’s always about socialization and cats getting used to and feeling relaxed around animals and humans. It is the duty of a cat breeder to ensure that her cats get along with people for obvious reasons. All the cats bred by good cat breeders should be beautifully socialized. They can integrate nicely into a new home because they are relaxed around people. This is why they are domestic animals. It is why feral cats are not domesticated.

Huge Australian Maine Coon is probably world's longest domestic cat
Omar, a Maine Coon, next to his dog companion.

It is interesting to note that on the Internet some websites list the best cat breeds for living with dogs. Years ago a visitor wrote a nice article listing the cat breeds that get along with dogs and those that don’t. I see the arguments but personally I take them with a pinch of salt.

Google finds what it thinks is the best page with respect to answering the question in the title which lists ten cat breeds and quite frankly it is incorrect. Of course, some cat breeds might be temperamentally more suited to being around dogs because they are very placid. But unless the cat is socialized to dogs they will be little better than any other cat in terms of getting along with dogs.

I don’t know how many cat breeders have dogs living in their homes. Breeding is normally a hobby business and I’m sure that there are breeders in America who have a dog as part of their family. In those households there is no doubt that the newborn cats will be socialized to the family dog which will make them more marketable because there are many households in America in which the family pets are both cats and dogs.

People searching for a cat breed considered to be suitable to be with a dog should instead search out cat breeders of the breeds that they like, telephone them and ask whether their cats are socialized to dogs. I think I would start from that standpoint rather than asking Google a question and expecting an accurate answer because as far as I can tell you won’t get one unless you read this article!

Gloria Stevens of ‘Legacy of the Cat’ says:

  • American Curls are ‘laid back, and adapt with ease to almost any home situation and other animals,
  • American Shorthairs are ‘wonderful with children’
  • Bombays are ‘generally calm and quiet in nature’.
  • British Shorthairs are a ‘extremely quiet, no-nonsense, unflappable breed of cat’.
  • Ocicats are ‘very friendly, loving, outgoing cats that make excellent companions for everyone in the family, including children, dogs, and other cats’.

These descriptions are the nearest I can find to being best for dogs.

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