Do ragdoll cats get along with dogs?
You may end up asking yourself which one is the dog?
Yes, ragdoll cats definitely get along with dogs, at least that is my experience. The Ragdoll Cats docile personality makes them a great fit for families with children and other pets, cats and dogs. Ragdoll cats are one of those cat breeds that often act like a dog, following you around the house and playing catch.
They are also typically quite vocal and will let you know when they need something.
- Do ragdoll cats get along with dogs?
- Why do Ragdolls get along so well with Dogs?
- Are Ragdoll Cats Vocal?
- Are There Some behaviour Issues with Dogs?
- Should I Introduce a Ragdoll Cat to My Home?
- Ragdoll Cats and Dogs FAQ
Why do Ragdolls get along so well with Dogs?
Its commonly known that most cat breeds and dogs don’t really mix.
I have had all kinds of dog breeds and all kinds of cat breeds. The kind that works together and the kind that does not work together. I had a boxer and a barn cat for a time and they used to cuddle together and play together all of the time. I have also had cats and dogs that really want nothing to do with each other.
What I have found is that you will have the highest chance of getting a cat that is ok with a dog when your working with ragdoll cats. Their personality and demeanour are perfect. Most of the time they are not aggressive, and most of the time they will like to play, and most of the time they will not get into the dog’s business too much.
Sometimes Ragdoll cats are also known as puppy cats because of they way ragdoll cats behave and their behaviour being like dog personalities. These cats, also called puppy cats will definitely treat you a little different than other cat breeds.
Are Ragdoll Cats Vocal?
Both of my ragdoll cats definitely are, and most ragdoll owners will tell you that they are. They will also tell you that it is not just for food and treats but sometimes for no reason at all but to chirp, meow and make noise. My experience though is that it is not annoying, most of the time.
My eldest cat Grandma cat can sometimes howl a bit when she feels lost or out of place. She doesn’t see very well anymore and I am not sure about her hearing as well. So sometimes I think she meows loudly just to hear herself.
Sometimes you will even hear your cat clicking or chirping, all of which is normal behaviour.
If the dog breed you have or the dog breed you are thinking of getting needs to work with your cat then you should be a bit more choosy when it comes to getting new dog. We have a guide on introducing a new puppy to a cat.
Most dog breeds are good, and will be fine, but there are some dog breeds that are better than others, and some dog breeds that you may want to stay away from when dealing with ragdoll cats. Skip down below to the FAQ section where we share our list of the dog breed you should be looking at for a ragdoll cat.
Are There Some behaviour Issues with Dogs?
At our home, we have two ragdolls and one Havanese dog. Introducing them took a little time. Before I moved into the house we brought the dog over to my place so that she could meet the cats in their environment. We did that twice. Both times the younger cat hid under the dresser and the older cat didn’t really care. She hissed once and that was it.
After that when I moved into my wife’s house we brought the cats and let them meet the dog in her home. There weren’t really any fireworks. I was expecting the cats to hide a little for the first few days and Maya did, but Grandma was just happy to be in a new home.
After Maya acclimatized herself she was happy to roam all over the house. We leave Nessie the dog and Maya the cat out together all day in the house and they seem to be fine. They definitely don’t cuddle or hang out too much together but they do have a mutual understanding and are ok together.
The only time they get a little at each other is during food time. They are both really food aggressive and love the treats…so they will jockey for position. It’s sometimes funny and usually very tame. Maya will try to swipe if Nessie gets too close, but Nessie will also snap back a little. It usually doesn’t amount to much and we are careful not to entice them during treats time.
Should I Introduce a Ragdoll Cat to My Home?
I am a little biased but I think yes. Ragdolls are the best, and they really do have the best personality. Take your time and make sure that you work with your dog to create a safe space for both pets and watch to see what happens.
Ragdoll Cats and Dogs FAQ
What Dogs are Good with Ragdoll Cats?
Ragdoll cats are known for their relaxed nature, friendly disposition, and social temperament. They are often quite compatible with dogs, given the right introduction and socialization process. However, the specific breed of dog that could pair well with a Ragdoll cat depends largely on the dog’s temperament and energy level.
- Golden Retrievers: Golden Retrievers are friendly, patient, and reliable. They generally get along well with other animals, including cats. Their gentle nature can make them a good fit with Ragdoll cats.
- Labrador Retrievers: Labs are known for their friendly and outgoing nature. They can be trained to live harmoniously with cats, especially a docile breed like the Ragdoll.
- Bichon Frise: This breed is gentle, cheerful, and loves companionship. Bichons are known to be very adaptable and generally get along well with other pets.
- Havanese: The Havanese breed is friendly, outgoing, and known for its sociable nature. They tend to adapt well to a variety of households and get along well with other pets. Their gentle demeanour and playful yet non-aggressive play style could make them a suitable companion for a Ragdoll cat. Remember, individual dogs’ personalities can vary, so introductions should be done gradually and under close supervision. The Havanese’s typically relaxed demeanour can complement the Ragdoll’s laid-back nature, making for a harmonious cohabitation given proper socialization and training. I own a Havanese and can attest to this.
- Cavalier King Charles Spaniels: These dogs are known for their gentle, affectionate, and friendly nature, making them a potentially good match for a Ragdoll cat.
- Maltese: Maltese dogs are typically friendly, sociable, and peaceful, which could mesh well with a Ragdoll’s temperament.
- Shih Tzu: Shih Tzus are often good with other pets. They are generally friendly, affectionate, and enjoy a relaxed lifestyle, much like Ragdolls.
Remember, individual temperament can vary greatly, so breed alone is not a guarantee of compatibility. Always supervise early interactions between a new dog and your Ragdoll cat until you’re certain they get along well. Also, remember to provide separate spaces for both the cat and dog to retreat to when they need privacy.
Do Ragdoll Cats Need a Companion?
It’s not like a ragdoll cat absolutely needs a companion but they definitely benefit from having other animals in the house. The companion doesn’t even have to be a cat, it can also be a dog. Because of the ragdoll’s friendly and docile temperament, they are usually pretty good by themselves, but they also will benefit from having a friend. We have a full article here about this topic.
How to Introduce a Ragdoll Cat to a Dog
Introducing a Ragdoll cat to a dog should be done carefully and gradually to ensure a positive relationship. Here’s a step-by-step guide:
- Isolate: Start by keeping the new pet (either the Ragdoll or the dog) in a separate room with their own food, water, and litter box (for the cat) or bed (for the dog). This allows each pet to become familiar with the smells and sounds of the other without direct contact.
- Scent Exchange: Swap bedding between the cat and the dog to help them get used to each other’s scent. You can also pet the dog and then pet the cat (and vice versa) to mix their scents on your hands.
- Controlled Introductions: After a few days, you can start controlled, short introductions. Keep the dog on a leash and let the cat approach at their own pace. Ensure the dog is calm and not overly excited. Reward calm behavior with treats and praise.
- Monitor Interactions: Gradually increase the time they spend together, always supervised. The cat should always have an escape route or high place to retreat to if they feel threatened.
- Gradual Integration: Over time, if the interactions are positive, you can allow them to spend more time together with less direct supervision.
Remember, patience is key. It may take several weeks for the pets to adjust to each other. If there’s aggression from either side, go back a step in the process and consult with a professional dog trainer or animal behaviorist if necessary.
Can a Ragdoll Cat be Left Alone with a Dog?
Whether a cat can be left alone with a dog depends largely on the specific cat and dog, their individual temperaments, their history of interactions, and the environment in which they’re left. Here are a few considerations:
- Relationship History: If the cat and dog have a history of getting along well, showing mutual respect and comfort around each other, it’s more likely they can be left alone together safely. If they’ve shown any signs of aggression or fear, it’s best not to leave them alone together.
- The Dog’s Temperament and Prey Drive: Some dogs have a high prey drive and may see a small animal, like a cat, as something to chase. Even if it’s done in play, it can be stressful and dangerous for the cat.
- The Cat’s Comfort: The cat should feel comfortable around the dog and have places to retreat to where the dog can’t reach. This might be a tall cat tree or a room blocked off with a baby gate.
- Supervision History: You should first monitor their interactions while you’re home to see how they behave when they’re alone together. You can use pet cameras to observe their behaviors when you’re not in the room.
- Gradual Steps: It’s best to gradually increase the amount of time they’re left alone together, starting with short periods of time.
In general, until you’re completely confident in their relationship, it’s better to be safe and separate them when you’re not home. Also, remember that even pets that generally get along can sometimes have disagreements, so always ensure the cat has somewhere safe to retreat to.
Can You Walk a Ragdoll Cat on a Leash?
Can Ragdoll cats walk on a leash?
Yes, with proper training and patience, you can walk a Ragdoll cat – or most cats – on a leash. Unlike dogs, cats are not typically accustomed to being leashed, so it’s important to get them used to the idea gradually.
Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to do this:
- Choosing the Right Equipment: Choose a harness specifically designed for cats. Cat harnesses are typically more secure than those for dogs, as cats can often slip out of the latter. Along with the harness, you’ll need a lightweight, retractable leash.
- Familiarization: Let your Ragdoll become familiar with the harness before you attempt to put it on. Leave it near their favorite sleeping or playing spot, allowing them to smell and interact with it.
- First Fitting: Once they’re comfortable with the harness, put it on them loosely without attaching the leash. Let them walk around indoors with it. Give them treats and praise to create positive associations.
- Adjustment Period: Once your cat seems comfortable with the harness, attach the leash and let them drag it around under your supervision. This helps them get used to the weight.
- Indoor Practice: Start by holding the leash and following your cat around the house. Never pull on the leash, but you can use it to gently guide your cat.
- First Outdoor Venture: When you feel your cat is ready, you can venture outside. Start with a quiet, secure area and stay close to home. Keep initial outings short and gradually increase the duration as your cat becomes more comfortable.
Remember, not all cats will take to leash training, and it’s important not to force it. If your Ragdoll cat or ragdoll kittens show signs of distress or fear, it may be best to find other ways for them to explore the outdoors safely, such as through a secure cat patio (also known as a “catio”) or window perches.
If you have two ragdoll cats like me you may want to take turns with them. You can definitely try to walk them both at the same time but it may be difficult.