10 Dog Breeds That Get Along With Cats

cat and dog snuggling on lounger

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If you love dogs and cats equally, you don’t have to choose just one pet to live with. Lots of dog breeds do well with cats, especially if they’re raised together. In general, certain types of dogs are better than others with cats. 

For instance, terriers are tenacious, feisty and full of energy. They were primarily bred to hunt and kill small furry things. Most retain this instinct to chase and exterminate smaller animals, and cats are no exception. Herding breeds often can’t stop themselves from herding all family members and cats might not appreciate being hounded by an enthusiastic dog. 

On the other hand, some working dogs were bred to watch over and protect other animals or human family members. Some tend to see smaller creatures in the family as something to take care of. Some hounds (scenthounds) were bred to work closely in packs, so they are usually friendly with other furry family members, cats included. (Note that the other type of hound, the sighthound, is notoriously bad with cats due to their innate drive to chase and dispatch anything that moves.) Sporting dogs like retrievers and spaniels are friendly and often get along with anyone, including cats. Toy dogs are small and were mostly bred to be loving companions. These easy-going breeds often do well with cats. 

A key takeaway to remember is that all dogs are individuals. Even though beagles tend to be good with cats, your beagle might not be. Always introduce dogs and cats cautiously until you know they will get along. In general, lower-energy, more laidback breeds might be a better choice than high-energy breeds with lots of prey drive or instinct to chase. 

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    Many Beagles get along well with cats.

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    Beagles are a subset of hound called a scent hound, which means they use their exceptional sense of smell to sniff out prey. Beagles traditionally hunted in large packs of dogs, with hunters accompanying the packs on foot or on horseback, so it was imperative that they got along with other animals. Beagles are gregarious and congenial, so most will live happily with other animals, including cats. 

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    Basset Hound

    basset hound on rock

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    Like the Beagle, the Basset Hound is also a scent hound. A fellow pack dog, Basset Hounds are friendly and amicable. With their short legs and long, heavy bodies, Basset Hounds are also slow-moving—a great combination of traits for living with cats.

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    Cavalier King Charles Spaniel

    cavalier king charles spaniel smiling

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    The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is part of the American Kennel Club Toy Group. Dogs in the Toy Group were bred to be loving, loyal lap dogs and companions. The Cavalier is as sweet as they come. This breed can get along with almost every person and animal imaginable, including cats. 

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    collie smiling sitting in the grass

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    If you recall Lassie, you know that Collies are lovers, not fighters. Although not all herding breeds live well with cats, Collies are a bit mellower than some herding breeds. Collies are exceptionally gentle with children and most family pets, even those of the feline persuasion. 

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    Golden Retriever

    Golden Retriever smiling in the grass
    Golden Retrievers are kind hearted and good with cats.

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    One of the most popular breeds in the world, the Golden Retriever is a true gentleman, and his good manners extend to cats as well as people. Golden Retrievers are loving, gentle and sweet natured. Most Goldens can live successfully with cats as long as they are properly introduced. 

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    poodle sitting in grass

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    Poodles are smart and tend to be calm in the home. The Poodle is one breed that comes in three size varieties: standard (more than 15 inches tall at the shoulder), miniature (10 to 15 inches tall) and toy (less than 10 inches). Often averaging 4 to 6 pounds, some Toy Poodles are smaller than cats. All Poodle varieties can potentially live peacefully with cats in the home. 

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    maltese running in grass

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    Weighing in at less than 7 pounds, the Maltese like the Toy Poodle is often smaller than an average-sized cat. Also a member of the Toy Group, the Maltese is a gentle and loving companion with an easy-going attitude. 

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    newfoundland puppy

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    Newfoundlands are the gentle giants of the dog world. Newfies are patient, calm and protective of their family members. Typically, Newfoundlands are great with people of all ages, including children, and pets of all types, including cats. 

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  • 09 of 10


    pomeranian smiling

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    The Pomeranian is a spirited and engaging little dog. At just three to seven pounds, most cats tower over Pomeranians, so these fluffy little members of the Toy Group are rarely a threat to feline friends. They tend to live peacefully with other pets, cats included. 

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    pug in the grass

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    Pugs are charming and happy little fellows that get along with almost anybody. Most Pugs lack the inclination to chase or otherwise bother a cat, so they can live successfully with felines when introduced properly.