I’ve never known a Corgi that didn’t have a personality big enough for a Great Dane. It’s funny to think of Corgis as working dogs, but they were originally bred for herding livestock. Corgis are called affectionate, smart, and alert by the American Kennel Club (Source: akc.org), and they’re pretty darn cute, too!
Generally speaking, there’s no reason Corgis and cats get along well. Energetic and playful cats are especially likely to get along with a high-energy dog like the average Corgi. Properly introducing the newest pet to your household is one of the biggest factors in determining whether or not a cat and a Corgi will get along.
Like many pet owners, I worry about introducing a new pet- I have a rather skittish cat that I love and want him to feel safe at home. Bringing home a dog like a Corgi or introducing one to a new cat can be nerve-wracking because you’re not sure they’ll get along.
Do Cats and Corgis get Along?
There’s never a 100% guarantee that any two animals will get along, and there are a lot of things that can change the answer. Corgis as a breed are energetic and intelligent, and many cats have the same traits, especially younger kitties.
The good news is that there are tons of households across the world that have cats and Corgis that get along just fine, happily playing together or at least staying out of each other’s way. Ask yourself a few basic questions before adding a new pet to your home, such as:
- What kind of temperament does your pet have?
- What are the ages of the pet you want to bring into the house and the pet you have?
- Do you have the space to keep your old and new pets separate until they get used to each other?
The personality of the Corgi and cat in question is going to be the key to figuring out if they can get along. If your Corgi is protective of you and doesn’t like sharing your affection or your cat is liable to attack anything that makes too much noise while they’re lounging around, it may be best not to bring a new pet home, or at least be very careful when you do.
Most shelters or rescues you might adopt a pet from will test their dogs and cats to see if they’ll get along with them or have been told by previous owners how they interact with other pets. If you’ve chosen to buy from a breeder, ask if your new Corgi or kitten has been exposed to other animals and how they did.
Dogs and cats get along best with each other when they’ve been socialized to coexist from a young age before any bad habits can set in. If it’s been just them and their humans their whole life, they won’t know what to do with a fellow pet, whether or not they’re a different species.
Older pets will almost always have a harder time with changes in the household, like a new pet. An older cat who hasn’t been around Corgis or active dogs before is much less likely to get along with a new puppy who wants to play when they want to nap in the sun. In the same way, an older Corgi might play too rough with a new kitten or even get aggressive if bothered.
It’s a bad idea to just bring home a new pet and expect them to instantly be best buddies with all the other animals in the household. A curious Corgi or cat exploring their new home might make the pets already there feel threatened, leading to cat-chasing or fights that are very much real instead of play.
How to Introduce Corgis and Cats
Bringing home a new cat or dog is an exciting time that needs a lot of prep work, especially if you already have pets at home. The same goes for introducing Corgis to cats. The basis for their relationship is all in the approach. Introducing pets is a process that can take weeks to do properly, so be prepared to commit a good amount of time and energy to it.
Set up your house to make the introduction of new pets go as smoothly as possible by doing a few key things:
Do Some Research
Read more articles and guides on introducing dogs and cats, and look into how to read body language in animals if you’re not familiar with the signs of stress they might show.
If you’re adopting a puppy that doesn’t know basic obedience commands yet, look up some simple training to help keep them calm in new situations.
Create a Sanctuary for Your Corgi and Cat
There should be a place for your cat to retreat to at all times, a place where your dog or dogs cannot enter. This sanctuary should include their food and water bowls, a scratching post, and their litter box (Source: Animal Humane Society.org). If you have a cat and are bringing home a new dog, create a sanctuary space for them as well.
Make an Introduction Plan
During the introductory period, you’ll need to perform actions like moving food bowls gradually closer to opposite sides of a door, carefully monitored introduction times, and giving out plenty of treats. Make sure you’ve set aside enough time in your daily routine for all these activities.
The first few days after a pet comes to their new home can be very stressful, and you may be waiting on the results of health tests for your new cat or dog.
Keep Everyone Separate for a Few Days
Your new pet should spend the first three to four days in their sanctuary room (Source: Animal Humane Socitey.org). While it’s fine for your pets to investigate the door to the sanctuary room, don’t make any attempts to introduce them yet. Give both animals time to adjust to the first step before moving on to the next.
Limit Space and Access
After securing your older pet in their designated room, let your new pet have the run of the house for a bit to explore and learn the scent of the other animal (Source: RSPCA). Then put your new Corgi or cat back in their sanctuary room and let your older pet out to learn their new housemate’s scent without having to meet them face to face. Repeat for several days.
Make it Fun
Teaching your pets to associate each other with good things is essential to creating a friendly relationship between them. Using food and treats will help them learn that the new animal in the house is nothing to be afraid of.
Feed Them on Opposite Sides of a Door
If your pets are comfortable enough to eat near each other, it’s much more likely they’ll get along the rest of the time as well.
Over the course of a week or so, move their food bowls closer to the door on either side until they eat comfortably side by side with just the door between them. When they do, it’s time to start face to face meetings
Start with Small Timed Interactions
Start putting both pets in the same room for small amounts of time, constantly monitored by you. Have your dog’s collar and leash attached but dragging on the floor so you can quickly prevent any chasing behavior while still letting them explore.
If one pet leaves the room, allow them and end the interaction time for the day. Make sure you’re having them meet each day.
Use Treats Liberally
Throughout the whole introductory process, use treats to help your pets learn that being around each other is a good thing. If they’re smelling where their new furry sibling was, that’s a treat. Meeting time should also mean they’re getting treats. As you shift into both pets being free all the time, wean off the treats as they learn to tolerate each other.
Cats and Welsh Corgis can become the best of friends if you play your cards right. Matching temperaments, making an introduction plan, and lots of patience can all help you have the best experience of owning both pets at the same time, so when you’re ready, go for it!