My dogs tried to kill a cat

I got home from work tonight and let my dogs out into my yard. I was out there with them. I left the back door open and my two cats slipped out and went to the front of the house. When they came back a moment later, a strange cat followed them. My dogs were on him and caught him before he could escape over the gate.

Chaos, shouting and they grabbed him and shook him a couple of times before I could get them away and into the house. The cat hopped up on my barbecue and I was able to get him into a cage and call animal services. He didn’t have any obvious injuries, but I suspect he had internal damage.

Animal services was nice. I’m not liable, the cat was at large in my yard, but I still feel terrible. I love my cats and would hate for anything so awful to happen to them. Poor little guy. There are lots of feral cats and dumped cats and semi-neglected pets in my neighbourhood. Cats are disposable pets here, but still he may have been someone’s pet.

I’m horrified at what my dogs have done. They’ve never shown any aggression towards the cats they live with. But now I wonder…

And I worry that if the owner of the cat finds out my dogs hurt him that they may retaliate… not sure how, but this is a bit of rough area.

Mostly, I just feel so bad for the cat.

Aww, as a cat lover I appreciate your concern for the cat. Your dogs were acting out of instinct/protection. Will Animal Services protect your identity if you express your concerns to them? Sounds like it’s a small risk anyone will come after you or anything, though. Is AS going to take a look at the cat?

Your dogs were doing what dogs do. They weren’t acting uncharacteristically, and in fact a dog that DIDN’T attack a strange cat invading their territory would be strange. I’m glad the cat is okay, though.

It’s not unusual for dogs to tolerate the family cat but treat cats encountered outdoors as ‘prey’. It’s just their nature.
It sounds like you did your best to help the cat. That’s more than a lot of folks would do.

When I was a kid I had a dog and cat, and my dog would bark at any cat he could see, except our cat.

I recall one dark night I was sitting outside, and my cat came around the corner, and my dog got up and started barking and running toward my cat. Suddenly he stopped dead in his tracks, shut up and turned around and walked away.

I guess in the dark he couldn’t tell the cat that belonged to him from the other neighborhood cats till he got close enough to see or recognize the scent or however he IDs cats.

I wouldn’t worry about your cats. Dogs don’t hate cats, they hate animals that don’t belong in their pack, which in your case consists of dogs, cats and people.

Poor kitty. Nature is not warm and fuzzy.

Plenty of dogs absolutely adore every other dog they see. Mine certainly does. Even the ones which decided they don’t like him.

I agree that it was most likely a matter of your dogs treating your cats as part of the pack and the strange cat as non-pack. Both are normal dog behavior.

:confused: For behaving naturally?

Animal Services came within the hour to pick him up. Given that I was able to get the cat and shove him into a cage, rather than watch a fleeing cat go over the fence and away, I suspect his injuries were pretty bad. I have big dogs.

The owners may or may not ever look for him. I don’t think AS will reveal that it was my dogs and I won’t be mentioning it to anyone.

Dogs will usually react quite differently depending on if they are on their own territory (your house and yard) or in some neutral territory, like out on a walk or in a park. YDMMV

It seems odd a strange cat would just come in your yard with your cats – surely he could smell that that was dog territory? We don’t have stray cats anywhere near the back yard, because I’m sure the smell of pit and simple dog would warn them away. Maybe he was already sick or injured, and hoping for human intervention?

Now that’s just mean. The OP is already devastated that his dogs chased a cat. Now he’s failed to interpret a stray cat’s plea for help and then turning his vicious dogs upon the poor injured thing.

I live in the city. There are a lot of cats in my neighbourhood. There are ferals that the neighbours feed and a lot that must be someones pets. The Animal Services person said that the apartment building nearby was notorious for people moving and simply putting their cats out by the dumpster. Income is low in this area, so spay/neuter is not a priority. All contributes to a fair number of roaming cats.

I have cats in my yard frequently or in my next door neighbours’ yards. The houses are close together here. I usually give any cat in my yard a bit of warning that I’m letting the dogs out so they can leave. This cat followed my cats to the back porch while I was outside with the dogs. He looked to be a young male. Maybe just curious, maybe just friendly, maybe looking for a hand out. By the time he realized there were dogs in the yard, it was too late and he couldn’t escape.

I’m horrified at what my dogs have done

It is hard for me to reconcile the sweet and loving dogs that I know, who live happily with my cats, with the savage beasts trying to kill a cat in my yard.

I like my cats a lot. It horrifies me to imagine something like that happening to any of them. I feel awful that it happened to this cat.

If you have the means to do so you may want to look into donating to a medical fund for cats at animal control or another shelter in order to give cats who end up in these situations a chance of getting help and a better chance of being adopted. It might make you feel better about what happened.

If the cat was a big, aggressive, flea and feline aids ridden Tom, your Dogs would be heroes for protecting the “family”.

If you don’t like dogs, don’t own dogs.

I have a declawed cat. I would never let Boris out because there are plenty of wild cats running around. My beagles will chase them away when they spot them. But they have not caught one yet.

I’d feel horrible, too, even though it is canine nature. Buddy the beagle tried to kill our friend’s cat when we brought him over to their house to visit, much to all of our surprise. Miss Emmy, his border collie best friend since puppyhood, declined to let him know that the cat was a part of her pack, and he went into immediate attack mode when he saw the feline intruder. Scared that kitty right up the tree. I was very unhappy with him, but he didn’t seem to care. He clearly wanted that cat DEAD. And now he is no longer allowed at Miss Emmy’s house without a leash.

Miss Emmy, for her part, didn’t look all that concerned by his reaction or the cat’s distress. Didn’t move one paw to protect the kitty.

We had a shepherd mix kill our own cat. He grew up with my three cats but he was an outdoors dog while they were indoors. Occasionally they met when I’d let the cats on the back porch and he looked at them with curiosity but I thought he’d learned that when they growl or swat he was to back off. I never would have trusted him alone with them.

Somehow, and we have no idea to this day what happened, our back door was opened while we were gone. Both of our dogs were in the house when I got home from taking my Mig to work. First thing I noticed was the blood on the one dog. Then I looked around. There were bits of one of my cat, blood and bits, everywhere. My other two cats managed to find places to hide but my sweetest, favorite baby girl Missy was dead in my daughter’s room. She had ripped the curtains down trying to escape. There was blood everywhere. We had to take the carpet up because the blood was just so thick where she laid. It was probably the most horrible thing I’ve ever seen. I guess some would say that’s a good thing that I’ve never seen worse, but it was my sweet kitty and she was just so torn up I made Mig find a new home for the dog that day. I could never look at him again. And yes I know he did what was “natural” but it didn’t change the fact that he did it, and I thought maybe next time it might be my little girl if he got it in to his mind to attack.