Any suggestions for a breed for a cat person?

If you are wondering what is the right dog for you, this is the place to be. In this introductory forum we talk about topics such as breed vs. mix, size, age, grooming, breeders, shelters, rescues as well as requirements for exercise, space and care. No question is too silly here. This particular forum is for getting and giving helpful, nice advice. It is definitely not a forum for criticizing someone else's opinion, knowledge or advice. This forum is all about tail wagging and learning.

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The Boys

The Three- Stooges.
Barked: Tue Feb 19, '13 9:06pm PST 
I've had a shepherd/husky and my daughters have had three huskies between them and have never had a problem with them and my cats. Two of my daughters huskies best friends were cats. That being said they are huge shedders anyways.

I had a cocker spanial that was wonderful with my cats and a great all around dog. Not high energy, loved everybody, not clingy but more than willing to cuddle and be loved on. Up for a hike but down for some couch time. Kept her trimmed so a trip to the groomers about three times a year.

It ain't over- till the fat- kitty sings
Barked: Tue Feb 19, '13 9:14pm PST 
I too am a cat person who crossed overlaugh out loud But I second the greyhound rescue idea. They often say many dog breeds are by nature prey driven but it totally depends on the individual dog...if you read about prey drive in terriers, then explain how I have two pits who completely respect that Cats Rule in our house...

Older greyhounds are terrific though, I'm thinking of one we used to know who's human owned a bookstore. He had a big blankie and pillow next to the counter. Most of his day was spent snoozing or grooming himself and he quietly welcomed customers to cuddle...very cat-like indeedkitty
Addy, CGC

Let's go for a- walk!
Barked: Tue Feb 19, '13 10:10pm PST 
Some good suggestions, but no list of "dogs for cat people" is complete without the Chinese Crested. They're notoriously good with cats, adjust themsrlves to the level of exercise you like and can di fine with one good walk a day plus some indoor playing. They are non-shedders and usually good for people with mild allergies. You hsve your choice of hairless or powderpuff. They do like to be with their people but can learn to deal very well with time without you--especially if they have the company of another animal. Such as, for instance, a cat. smile

Member Since
Barked: Tue Feb 19, '13 10:31pm PST 
Wow! So many good responses. Thanks so much for taking the time to answer my question! I really appreciate all your answers; they've really helped me narrow the field down a bit.

So, here's a follow up question:
Out of the following:
Shih tzu, lhasa apso, Tibetan Spaniel, and pekingese.
Which might generally be the most needy, and which would be the least? I'm particularly interested in the Shih tzu and tibbie, but I've heard that the tibbie doesn't do as well with being alone as the shih tzu. Is that true?

What do you guys think about whippets? Are they more independent like a greyhound, or do they tend to be more needy like an italian greyhound?

What do you think about Boston Terriers, Frenchies, and bulldogs? They sound like low energy, low exercise, sweet dogs, but I've been a little hesitant about them because of their health problems. And I've heard they're a little needy. Is that so? I think one of you mentioned in a different post that pugs shed like crazy. do the boston, frenchie, and bulldog shed a lot too?

Now, as for the doberman, you really surprised me there! I'm afraid that I probably wouldn't be able to exercise him as much as he needs. Does he require a lot more exercise than those smaller dogs? I've heard they're pretty dominant as well. Is that true?

Thanks for the heads-up on the berner. Once you mentioned it, I remembered hearing about their epic shedding amounts.

It's good to know that some greyhounds can be good around cats, because the more I learn about them, the more I like them. So, for the ones that can be good around cats, are they usually pretty dependable? Or is there still a higher than average risk that they could harm a cat?

You know, I hadn't even considered a miniature schnauzer! they sound like great little dogs. I think I probably couldn't handle the barking, which is why I've not looked into most of the terriers as much. I've met a few different terriers, and I love how they kind of bounce around as they bark. Maybe they're like bounce machines, and the barking sound is how you know they're working? laugh out loud

As for the huskies, they're gorgeous dogs! I can totally relate to the aesthetic appeal aspect. I tend to find myself attracted to the sighthounds, but I don't think there's a person who could look themselves in the mirror and say that huskies aren't beautiful dogs.

Thanks for the idea about the Chinese Crested. I hadn't looked into them, I will now!

Also, just FYI. If any of you have sheep that need herding, but don't want to pay a lot for dog food, consider a papillon. I just watched a couple of youtube videos of them herding sheep. big laugh
Jake Earned- his wings- 10.02.15

I am Murphy's- Law Embodied! <3- Me!
Barked: Tue Feb 19, '13 11:06pm PST 

I can only chime in about doberman i'm afraid. I don't have much experience with the other breeds you were asking about.

My ex had a doberman. She was a sweetheart but a bit of a headcase. She was poorly socialized and depended on him constantly. She was more like a neurotic girlfriend than a dog. red face She loved jake and i would often exercise them together. i found she required about hte same amount of exercise as Jake did at the time. She greatly enjoyed hiking and backpacking with Jake and I but when my ex's hours changed and he started working a lot more she began going stir crazy. I can leave jake inside with very little exercise for about a week before I start to see any really bad signs of excess energy like destroyed items, pacing or excessive chewing. *this happened when i caught the flu and coudln't leave home for seveal days) while my ex's doberman would loose it after about 24 hours of not being out.

Everyone else i knew who had dobies often took them out everday even if only for a little while so they'd loose some energy. Examples of this include going to hte dog park, just a simple walk in the park for 20 minutes.

** I was a lovely cat person my whole life. I grew up with cats and when i got the chance jumped at getting a dog. Since unlike cats dogs can go with you out on trails and what not. reserach yoru breed wisely. You've recieved lots of great advise here on the form from some really great posters. Good luck to you.

Member Since
Barked: Tue Feb 19, '13 11:29pm PST 
Thanks for the doberman advice. That's kind of what I imagined it would be. It's good to know that beforehand.
Maggie,- Tika, &- Porter

Aussie-tastic- Trio
Barked: Wed Feb 20, '13 12:42am PST 
I am a cat person - really wink I currently only have one cat though lol! I do think aesthetics plays a big part to cat people as even ugly cats are pretty - something about the grace that people imagine cats have...or something lol laugh out loud

I found Aussies because of Maggie - I thought she was very pretty and I wanted her, luckily her owners found her to be too much for them and gave her to me (as a very novice dog owner - she was my first dog ever lol). But luckily Aussies fit in with what I wanted, I now have three and have about a dozen fosters pass through my life - never thought I would like a herding breed as I always wanted a terrier or husky as a kid. But they work for me.

I will chime in on the Tibetan Spaniels though - I love them! My brother has one and she is super cat-like, but enough doggy that she enjoys many dog things. She is very easy going and just a sweetheart.

Edited by author Wed Feb 20, '13 12:45am PST


Black dogs rock!
Barked: Wed Feb 20, '13 4:38am PST 
I don't personally have one (although I often wonder if Bunny's DNA test result of Pug got somehow mixed up with Shih Tzuwink ) they are incredibly popular here. They seem to do well with both families and seniors and in our changable weather from snow to hot summer days. None of the ones I have met have been barkers and all have been friendly. I have never met one in a show cut, as a matter of fact while watching the dog show I had to explain to hubby that the dog with the long flowing hair and top knot was the same breed as his friend's short haired doglaugh out loud Here is a link to a description(take out any spaces that may appear):


Edited by author Wed Feb 20, '13 4:39am PST


Noms for the- pug...
Barked: Wed Feb 20, '13 8:27am PST 
I’m a total dog person, but my husband is a cat person so I have to take that into consideration every time I think of adding a new dog. My pug was good with our cat, although he did let her bully him a bit, but they do shed constantly. The pug has an undercoat so its fur is different from the Boston Terrier, French and English Bulldogs. They shed too but since they don’t have that undercoat it’s not as bad. One thing I noticed about the one Boston and the one English Bulldog I’ve met is that they both had a lot of dander. That may have been poor grooming practices on the owners’ part or a skin condition that the dogs may have had since they were both rescues. I don’t know, but it’s just something I noticed and could affect your allergies. These breeds are also prone to several health problems so it’s important to look for a very good breeder to reduce your risk.

I really love the Tibetan Spaniel. I’ve met one who was absolutely adorable and a joy to be around. I’ve also done some research on them and if I don’t get one as my next dog, it will probably be the dog after that. I have known people who owned Pekes and Shih Tzus. My aunt and uncle had a Peke and they both worked full time and had a cat. He seemed to do fine. My previous boss has 2 shih tzus and she works minimum 8 hour days, sometimes longer. She says the female is a bit crazy and has some quirks but the male she says is very calm and has no problems being left alone that long. Chinese Crested are also great little dogs. The one I knew always seemed very clean and her skin was so soft.

The only Whippet, I’ve had the pleasure of working with was a super gentle and sweet dog, but she was also nervous and fearful. She was a rescue as well so that may have been an individual rather than a breed trait, but she stuck to her person like glue.

All of my experiences are pretty much one-offs so I can’t say whether they are representative of the breeds as a whole or not, but just wanted to throw this information into the mix to be taken as you will. smile

Barked: Wed Feb 20, '13 9:00am PST 
If you're interested in Greyhounds but want something smaller who is less likely to be dangerous with cats, may I suggest Italian Greyhounds? I've only ever met poorly bred ones, but overall they were both sweet, nice dogs and they've done well even though they're never walked, etc. They also don't seem to bother the rabbit in the house (my Shiba would have seen that rabbit cage as a puzzle toy with a tasty rabbit treat inside, I think).
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