One question that many prospective pet owners may have is whether or not Chihuahuas are good with cats.
While every individual animal has their own unique personality and temperament, Chihuahuas can generally be a good companion for cats.
So, are chihuahuas good with cats? Let’s take a closer look at what makes these two pets so similar yet different! You’ll also learn what you can do to help these two pets live peacefully in your home.
Can Chihuahuas Get Along With Cats?
Yes! Chihuahuas can get along with cats, but it depends on the individual temperament and socialization of both the Chihuahua and the cat. Some Chihuahuas may have a strong prey drive and may chase or attack cats. Others may be more tolerant and even friendly with other pets.
With proper introduction, supervision, and training, many Chihuahuas can get along well with cats and even have close bonds with them.
If you don’t believe it, check out this post with loads of photos submitted by readers of their chihuahuas and cats together.
Understanding Chihuahuas Temperament
A Chihuahua’s temperament can have a significant impact on how they interact with cats.
They’re small, but they have big personalities. They’re loyal, affectionate, and can be quite
However, they can also be stubborn and tend to bark excessively. Additionally, Chihuahuas are known to be brave, which can lead to aggressive behavior towards strangers or other pets. They’re intelligent and can be easily trained with positive reinforcement techniques.
Even so, Chihuahuas can be sensitive to harsh training methods. They may become fearful or aggressive if they feel threatened.
5 Reasons Chihuahuas and Cats Might Not Get Along
Chihuahuas and cats are both cuddly and often kept in the same household. But their personalities can clash, and that can be challenging. Here are some potential reasons:
- Prey Drive. Chihuahuas have a strong prey drive and may see cats as prey. This can lead to chasing, barking, and aggressive behavior. If this is the case, it can be difficult for the two pets to coexist peacefully.
- Fearfulness. On the other hand, Chihuahuas can also be fearful of cats, especially if they haven’t socialized with them at a young age. Fearful chihuahuas may bark, growl, or even bite when in the
presence of a cat.
- Territorial Behavior. Chihuahuas can be territorial to their owners and may view cats as a threat to their space and attention. This can lead to conflicts because both pets want control over their space.
- Past Experiences. Negative experiences, such as being attacked by cats, may develop a dismissive association with them. If this is the case, Chihuahuas will be more likely to show aggressive behavior
towards them in the future.
- Lack of Socialization. If Chihuahuas haven’t been exposed to cats at a young age, they may not know how to interact with them. This is one of the most common reasons why Chihuahuas show fear or aggression towards cats.
Will a Cat Hurt a Chihuahua?
Yes, it’s possible. However, cats are less likely to be aggressive with Chihuahuas. They can become aggressive if they feel threatened or if they’re in a defensive mode.
Tips to Help Chihuahua Get Along With a Cat
Chihuahuas and cats can get along, but they aren’t typically the best of friends. You have to work out a way for them to live peacefully together.
Keep in mind that each Chihuahua has a unique temperament, so it’s not always possible to predict how they’ll behave around cats.
However, some guidelines can help owners ensure a positive relationship between their Chihuahua and cat:
- Introduce Them Slowly. Do it slowly and gradually, under close supervision. This can help prevent any aggressive behavior conflicts. Cats are territorial, so they may feel threatened by a new addition to their home. The best way to introduce them is to let them get used to each other’s scent. Start by placing the Chihuahua in one room and the cat in another room. Leave the doors open so both pets can see each other, but don’t allow them to interact until they’ve gotten used to each other’s presence. After some time, move on to letting them spend time together with supervision.
- Provide Separate Spaces. Providing each their own room or bed can help reduce stress and anxiety in both pets. If you have a cat that has a favorite spot in the house, don’t expect the dog to just walk right in and take over. Separate spaces can also be as simple as putting up a baby gate—a fence high enough so that neither pet can jump over it should work.
- Monitor Interactions. Close supervision is important, especially in the early stages of the introduction. Keep a close eye on any interactions between them so you can intervene if needed.
- Provide Positive Reinforcement. Reward positive behavior from both pets with treats and praise. This can help reinforce good behavior and encourage them to interact positively with each other.You may also want to make sure that both pets are getting enough attention from you throughout the day.
- Seek Professional Help. If a Chihuahua is showing aggressive behavior towards a cat, it may be necessary to seek professional help from a trainer. They can guide you on how to improve the Chihuahua’s behavior. They can also help you promote positive interactions with other pets. The Association of Professional Dog Trainers can help you locate one near you. Another option is to find an animal behaviorist who can help you understand why your pets are aggressive. They can help you train your pets to get along as well.
To Sum It Up
In conclusion, Chihuahuas and cats can get along well. However, you should introduce them properly and give them time to adjust to each other’s presence.
While there are potential challenges that may arise due to the differences in their temperaments, with patience and supervision, these two pets can form a harmonious bond.
Be mindful of your pets’ behaviors and take steps to prevent any potential harm. Ultimately, whether a Chihuahua gets along with a cat will depend on the personalities of both pets and the effort you put into their introduction and relationship building.
I’m an avid dog lover and I’ve had many dogs throughout my life. When I rescued my first Chihuahua, I was hooked on the breed.
I have had dogs all my life and have trained as a dog groomer. I also have been a kennel worker, worked in a pet hotel through PetSmart, and still am a pet sitter.
Read my full bio on my About page
Saturday 18th of March 2023
Hi Cathy, I am so glad you're doing well. I love this blog. Although I love dogs and have had many my whole life, Chihuahuas are my tops. My Chi Mike ( also known as Mikey and MikeMike) is 24 this month. We got him when he was almost 15. During the time we have had him we also have had three cats. Mike got along great with all of them. One by one the cats left. Two were very senior and died the third was eight years old and he got away from my husband while we were living in our car. We had been homeless going in two months and he really did not take to it very well. I am sure he loved us as much as we loved him , he just couldn't take how we had to make do. One day while I was in the local library charging up our phones, my husband did his usual routine of getting out of the car to smoke. Up til that time we each had been able to grab Harley's leash and hang onto him. That time my husband wasn't able to grab his leash. He ran after him calling his name. It did no good. A couple hours later when I came out and my husband told me, I lost it . It's a shame too because two and half months later we had found a new place to live. Mikey was very sad after Harley ran away. He was depressed for a while. Then after we had been in our new place for a while , he began to be his old chipper self. And not too long after we had been in the new place, my brother called and asked if we would take his dear neighbor's cat Megan. Megan was 17 and her Momma was very bad off and was going into hospice til she passed. She asked my brother and his wife to handle her affairs. But most importantly she wanted to make sure Megan would be taken care of. My brother assured her daily Megan was being taken care of. My brother told me daily also how Anna was doing. Megan was so sweet. And gentle but she lived to play tricks on Mikey. I love Mikey, but I can admit as smart he is, he can also act like he's duh. Megan could pull the same tricks on him over and over. And sometime immediately one after another. And Mikey would have the same totally stunned reaction. Sometimes maybe he was playing along with her. Who knows. But as time went on her energy was getting less and less, she wouldn't eat. I knew she missed Anna. The more dire Anna's condition got the worse Megan got. Mikey got very solicitous of her. He would watch her with very sad eyes and he would cry. It was only a matter of a few weeks more and Megan died on morning very early. The night before she came to each of us and spent time with each of us. She spent time with Mike under the kitchen table . We went to sleep and about five in the morning we found her dead, curled up in her litter box. Anna had gone comatose that night. She died five days later. I believe Megan wanted to be there waiting for Anna in heaven
Saturday 18th of March 2023
What an awesome story Pat! And I'm in awe of how old Mike is. What do you feed him? Any idea of why he's lived as long as he has?