In this short podcast, renowned Animal Behaviourist Dr Joanne Righetti, Pet Problems Solved shares her own personal experience and the steps she took to introduce kittens to a dog (and 16-year-old cat) to her busy home.
Dr Jo adopted three kittens called Earth, Wind and Fire from Animal Welfare League NSW . Dr Jo reveals her tip for smooth sailing introductions between her pets.
Dr Jo emphasises in the podcast that it’s important the kittens feel safe at each step of the introduction process. Dr Jo says her house is full of cardboard boxes just for the cats to play with and make them feel safe. The kittens also have several places up high where they can escape finding peace.
Dr Jo said she used lots of praise and treats to reward her dog’s calm behaviour around the kittens during the introduction phase. She points out that her dog is used to being around feisty felines in their home. Dr Jo says you need to establish whether your dog is cat-friendly or not. If not, then you will need to work on that first.
Listen to the Introduce kittens to a dog podcast
About Dr Joanne Righetti
Dr Jo helps pet owners understand their pet’s behaviour and solve behaviour problems. She is an animal behaviourist whose background is in zoology, with a PhD in animal behaviour and a counselling diploma – qualifications which enable her to work with all sorts of animals – including the human variety!
Dr Jo consults to pet owners, government, commercial pet companies and is a regular radio guest around Australia. She is proud to be an Ambassador of Animal Welfare League NSW, Assistance Dogs Australia and Purina Australia. She is also an honorary associate of the School of Veterinary Sciences, University of Sydney and an adjunct lecturer at the University of New England.