worst dog breeds for cats

Worst Dog Breeds for Cats: Top Unfriendly Picks

According to our research, certain dog breeds may not be suitable for households with cats. It’s important to be aware of these breeds to ensure a harmonious living environment for both your dog and cat.

Key Takeaways:

  • Some dog breeds may not get along well with cats and may have a tendency to chase them.
  • Early socialization can help minimize the risk, but it may not eliminate the instinct to chase.
  • It’s crucial to consider the compatibility between dog breeds and cats before bringing a new pet into your home.
  • Proper supervision and training are essential for ensuring a safe and peaceful coexistence between dogs and cats.
  • Always consult with a professional trainer or behaviorist if you’re uncertain about introducing a specific breed to your cat.

The American Pit Bull Terrier

The American Pit Bull Terrier is a highly recognized breed known for its muscular physique and affectionate nature. However, it’s important to acknowledge that they possess a strong fighting spirit, which can sometimes lead to chasing behaviors towards cats and other small animals, even without the intention to harm them.

Early socialization plays a crucial role in modifying the natural instincts of American Pit Bull Terriers. Exposing them to various environments and interactions with cats can help mitigate their tendency to chase. However, it is essential to note that despite socialization efforts, they are still likely to exhibit chasing behavior towards cats.

When considering adding an American Pit Bull Terrier to a household with cats, it is vital to assess the individual dog’s temperament and compatibility with cats. Some American Pit Bull Terriers may coexist peacefully with cats if properly introduced and supervised, while others may continuously display a strong desire to chase.

It’s recommended to consult with a professional dog trainer or behaviorist experienced in working with both American Pit Bull Terriers and cats to ensure a safe and harmonious environment for all pets involved.

“American Pit Bull Terriers have a natural instinct to chase, but with early socialization and proper training, they can learn to coexist peacefully with cats.”

The Scottish Deerhound

The Scottish Deerhound is a majestic and elegant hunting breed known for its remarkable speed and keen eyesight. With a rich history tracing back to ancient Scotland, these dogs were primarily used for hunting deer in the Scottish Highlands.

While Scottish Deerhounds are gentle and affectionate towards their human families, it’s important to note that their strong hunting instincts can pose challenges when introducing them to cats and other small animals.

Scottish Deerhounds have an innate drive to chase, and cats, with their quick movements and agile nature, can trigger their natural instincts. It’s not uncommon for Scottish Deerhounds to be fascinated by the sight of a cat and give chase, even if their intentions are not to harm.

Early socialization is crucial in managing the relationship between Scottish Deerhounds and cats. By exposing them to cats from a young age, and under controlled circumstances, it is possible to help reduce the risk of chasing behavior. However, it’s important to note that the cat may still feel uncomfortable and stressed when being chased, which can strain the harmony in the household.

To illustrate the temperament and physical attributes of the Scottish Deerhound, below are a few key points:

  • The Scottish Deerhound is a large breed, with males typically standing around 30 to 32 inches at the shoulder and weighing between 85 and 110 pounds.
  • They have a graceful and athletic build, with a deep chest and a long, slender tail.
  • Their double coat consists of a harsh outer coat and a soft, dense undercoat, which provides protection from the elements.

While Scottish Deerhounds can be a challenging breed to integrate with cats, it’s important to remember that each individual dog may have different levels of prey drive and compatibility with cats. Proper training, supervision, and understanding of their instincts can help create a more harmonious environment for both your Scottish Deerhound and your feline companion.

The Greyhound

The Greyhound is a fast hunting dog with a strong instinct to chase. This breed’s pursuit of prey is deeply ingrained, making them likely to chase cats. The Greyhound’s size and speed give them an advantage in a chase, making them potentially dangerous to have around cats, especially if not properly socialized.

The Greyhound’s instinct to chase is undeniable. Their history as racing dogs and hunters has honed their natural abilities. When a Greyhound sees a cat, their predatory drive kicks in, and they may engage in intense pursuit.

To ensure a safe and harmonious environment for both your Greyhound and cat, early socialization is crucial. By introducing them to each other gradually, under controlled circumstances, you can help your Greyhound understand that the cat is not prey but a fellow member of the family.

It’s important to note that even with proper socialization, caution should be exercised. Never leave a Greyhound alone with a cat unsupervised, as their chasing instinct may still prevail in certain situations. Providing separate spaces for your cat and Greyhound can also help to minimize potential conflicts.

Greyhound Adoption and Cat Compatibility

If you’re considering adopting a Greyhound but already have a cat, take their compatibility into account. Not all Greyhounds are suitable for homes with cats, especially if they have a high prey drive or a history of not getting along with them.

When adopting a Greyhound, it’s vital to work with a reputable rescue organization or breeder who can provide insights into a specific dog’s behavior and compatibility with cats. They can guide you in finding a Greyhound that is more likely to coexist peacefully with your feline companion.

Factors to Consider When Adopting a GreyhoundCompatibility with Cats
Past Interactions with CatsMay indicate if the Greyhound has a history of aggression towards cats or if they have shown tolerance.
Prey DriveA Greyhound with a high prey drive may have a strong urge to chase and potentially harm cats.
TemperamentA calm and laid-back Greyhound may be more likely to coexist peacefully with cats.
Behavioral AssessmentA professional assessment can provide a better understanding of a Greyhound’s behavior and compatibility with cats.

Greyhound image

Remember, successful cohabitation between a Greyhound and a cat requires patience, proper training, and understanding of both animals’ needs. With the right approach and precautions in place, a Greyhound and cat can learn to peacefully share a home.

The Samoyed

The Samoyed is a medium-sized dog breed known for its alert temperament and beautiful white coat. While they may appear happy and friendly, Samoyeds have a natural instinct to chase small animals, including cats. It’s important to be cautious when introducing a Samoyed to a household with cats, as their chasing instincts can potentially harm the feline members.

This breed likely had to hunt for food in the wild, which contributes to their strong chasing instincts. Early socialization and proper training can help mitigate this behavior, but it’s important to understand that Samoyeds may still have a high prey drive. Cat owners considering adding a Samoyed to their family should be prepared to provide proper supervision and create safe spaces for the cats where they can retreat and feel secure.

“While Samoyeds are generally known for their friendly and gentle nature, their prey drive can make them incompatible with cats. It’s essential to understand your dog’s instincts and take necessary precautions to ensure the safety and well-being of both your Samoyed and cats.”

Tips for Introducing a Samoyed to Cats:

  • Gradual Introductions: Introduce the Samoyed and the cats gradually, allowing them to become familiar with each other’s scent and presence. Keep the initial interactions short and controlled.
  • Create Separate Spaces: Provide separate spaces for the cats and the Samoyed. This can be done by using baby gates or providing elevated areas that the cats can access but the Samoyed cannot.
  • Supervision: Always supervise interactions between the Samoyed and the cats, especially during the initial stages. This allows you to intervene if necessary and ensure the safety of all pets involved.
  • Positive Reinforcement: Reward both the Samoyed and the cats for positive behavior and calm interactions with praise, treats, and affection. This helps to reinforce good behavior and create a positive association.

Samoyed chasing cat

Bedlington Terrier

When it comes to dog breeds that may not be the best match for cats, Bedlington Terriers are worth mentioning. While they are an alert and intelligent breed, they often display a strong prey drive and may chase away intruders, including cats. This behavior stems from their instinct to protect their territory.

Bedlington Terriers have a unique appearance with their woolly coats and lamb-like faces, but their hunting instincts can make them a potential threat to cats. They are known to bark and become aggressive towards other dogs, which can create a tense environment for cats living in the same household.

If you have a cat and are considering bringing a Bedlington Terrier into your home, it’s important to proceed with caution. Proper socialization and training from an early age can help mitigate any potential issues, but the presence of a Bedlington Terrier may still cause anxiety and stress for your cat.

Bedlington Terrier at a Glance:

  • Alert and intelligent breed
  • Strong prey drive
  • Barks and may show aggression towards other dogs
  • Potential threat to cats

If you have a Bedlington Terrier and a cat, it’s essential to introduce them slowly and carefully. Always supervise their interactions and provide a safe space for your cat to retreat to if needed. It’s vital to prioritize the well-being and comfort of both your dog and cat to ensure a harmonious and peaceful household.

Bedlington Terrier

Bedlington Terriers are an intriguing breed with their unique appearance and protective instincts. However, their tendencies to chase and show aggression towards other dogs can make them a less than ideal companion for cats. Proper introductions, socialization, and ongoing management are crucial to fostering a peaceful coexistence between a Bedlington Terrier and a cat.

The Weimaraner

The Weimaraner is a large hunting dog known for its striking silver-gray coat and sleek build. While they make loyal and affectionate companions, their strong instinct to hunt small animals can make them less than ideal for households with cats.

With their high prey drive, Weimaraners are likely to chase after squirrels, rabbits, and even cats that cross their path. This behavior stems from their hunting background, where they were originally bred to track and retrieve game. Despite their friendly and gentle nature, the instinct to chase may still be present.

Proper socialization from a young age can help minimize the risk and teach a Weimaraner to coexist peacefully with cats. Introducing them to cats and providing positive experiences can help them understand that cats are part of the family and not prey. It’s crucial to supervise interactions between them to ensure the safety and well-being of both pets.

While some Weimaraners may eventually learn to live harmoniously with cats, it’s important to understand that individual personalities and instincts can vary. Therefore, it’s essential to consider the specific traits of each animal and monitor their interactions closely.


Although Weimaraners can pose challenges for households with cats, it doesn’t mean that the two can never coexist. With patience, consistent training, and proper precautions, it’s possible for Weimaraners and cats to build a respectful and peaceful relationship.

The Beagle

The Beagle is a small but determined breed known for its strong sense of smell and friendly nature. While they are not as fast as some other dog breeds, Beagles have a knack for fitting into small places, which can make it difficult for cats to hide from them. This can lead to stressful situations for both the Beagle and the cat.

Once a Beagle traps a cat, their instinct to bark and alert others is triggered. This behavior can cause additional stress for the cat and disrupt the peace in your home. It’s important to understand and manage the dynamics between Beagles and cats to create a harmonious environment for all of your pets.

If you have a Beagle and a cat at home, it’s essential to provide plenty of safe spaces for your cat to retreat to when needed. This can include high perches, hiding spots, and separate feeding areas. Additionally, introducing your Beagle and cat slowly and under controlled circumstances can help them get used to each other’s presence and reduce the likelihood of confrontations.

Pros of Beagles and Cats Potential Coexistence:Cons of Beagles and Cats Potential Coexistence:
  • Beagles are generally friendly and sociable dogs.
  • With proper training, Beagles can coexist peacefully with cats.
  • Beagles have a playful nature, which can provide entertainment for cats.
  • Beagles have a strong prey drive, which may cause them to chase and potentially harm cats.
  • Beagles can be persistent in their pursuits, making it difficult for cats to relax and feel safe.
  • Beagles’ barking tendencies can disrupt the peace in the household and stress out cats.

Remember, every dog and cat is unique, and individual personalities play a significant role in their ability to coexist. Proper training, socialization, and supervision are key when introducing Beagles and cats to each other. If you’re uncertain about how to navigate this process, consult with a professional dog trainer or behaviorist to ensure the safety and well-being of your pets.


The Shih Tzu

The Shih Tzu is a small breed that can easily fit into a cat’s hiding places. However, their aggression towards cats is usually motivated by jealousy, as they demand a lot of attention. They are likely to chase cats away in an attempt to regain their owner’s attention.

To create a better understanding of the Shih Tzu’s behavior towards cats, let’s take a closer look at their characteristics:

BehaviorShih TzuCats
AggressionMay exhibit aggression towards cats due to jealousyVaries based on individual personality
SizeSmallVariable sizes
TemperamentPlayful, attentive, and loyalVaries based on individual personality
Exercise NeedsLow to moderateVaries based on breed

While the Shih Tzu’s behavior towards cats may be challenging, it is important to remember that each pet’s personality can vary. Proper socialization and training can help foster a more harmonious relationship between Shih Tzus and cats. It is advisable to introduce them gradually and provide adequate supervision to ensure the safety and well-being of both pets.

“Introducing a Shih Tzu to a cat requires patience and careful planning. Slowly introduce them in a neutral environment and provide positive reinforcement for calm behavior.” – Dr. Jane Turner, Animal Behavior Specialist

Understanding the characteristics and tendencies of the Shih Tzu is crucial when considering the compatibility with cats. While they may exhibit aggressive behavior towards cats, the right approach, including early socialization and training, can help to manage their instincts and create a peaceful coexistence within the household.

Shih Tzu chasing a cat

The Schnauzer

The Schnauzer is an affectionate breed known for their distinctive bearded face and wiry coat. They make great family pets, but it’s important to be aware of their tendencies when it comes to cats.

While Schnauzers can be loving and gentle with their human family members, they may have a strong prey drive when it comes to small yard animals. Cats, in particular, can trigger their chase instinct, causing stress for both the cat and the Schnauzer.

Early socialization is key in minimizing aggression between cats and Schnauzers. Introducing them to each other gradually and under supervision can help them develop a more positive relationship. However, it’s important to note that even with socialization, Schnauzers may still chase yard animals, including cats.

To create a harmonious living environment for both your cat and Schnauzer, it’s essential to provide a safe space for the cat where they can retreat and feel secure. This can include high perches, hiding spots, and separate feeding areas. Monitoring their interactions closely and addressing any signs of aggression or stress is crucial.

Gentle Introduction Tips:

  • Start with scent exchange: Allow the cat and Schnauzer to sniff each other’s bedding or toys to become familiar with each other’s scents.
  • Gradual face-to-face meetings: Initially, keep the cat and Schnauzer in separate areas of the house and allow them to see each other through a glass door or baby gate.
  • Supervised interactions: Once both the cat and Schnauzer show signs of curiosity rather than fear or aggression, you can start supervised face-to-face interactions while using treats and positive reinforcement to reward calm behavior.

Remember, every Schnauzer and cat is unique, so it’s essential to monitor their interactions closely and make adjustments accordingly. If aggression persists or poses a risk to either animal’s well-being, consult a professional animal behaviorist for guidance.

“Early and positive socialization is crucial for ensuring a peaceful coexistence between Schnauzers and cats. With patience, consistency, and proper supervision, you can help them build a harmonious relationship.” – Dr. Emily Hernandez, Veterinarian

Traits and Characteristics of the Schnauzer:

AffectionateSchnauzers form strong bonds with their human families and enjoy spending time with them.
High-strungThey can be easily excitable and may have a tendency to bark excessively.
IntelligentSchnauzers are highly intelligent and trainable, which can be advantageous for their socialization with cats.
ProtectiveThey have a natural protective instinct, which can manifest as territorial behavior towards cats and other potential threats.


Irish Wolfhound

The Irish Wolfhound is a majestic and gentle giant, known for its affectionate nature and calm temperament. Despite their size, these magnificent dogs can get along well with house cats and form strong bonds with them. Their patient and tolerant nature allows them to coexist peacefully, creating a harmonious environment for both pets.

However, it’s important to note that Irish Wolfhounds possess strong hunting instincts, which can lead them to chase small animals when they are outside in the yard. Their incredible speed and agility make it crucial to supervise them during outdoor activities to prevent any accidental harm to wildlife or neighboring pets.

During the socialization process, it is recommended to introduce Irish Wolfhounds to cats gradually and under controlled circumstances. This helps them build positive associations and reinforces their understanding of appropriate behavior around feline companions. Ongoing supervision and training are essential to ensure a safe and mutually respectful relationship between these gentle giants and their feline friends.


What are the worst dog breeds for cats?

Some of the worst dog breeds for cats include the American Pit Bull Terrier, Scottish Deerhound, Greyhound, Samoyed, Bedlington Terrier, Weimaraner, Beagle, Shih Tzu, Schnauzer, and Irish Wolfhound.

Are American Pit Bull Terriers good with cats?

While American Pit Bull Terriers can be affectionate, they have a strong chasing instinct that may make them unsuitable for households with cats.

Do Scottish Deerhounds get along with cats?

Scottish Deerhounds have a strong hunting instinct and are likely to chase cats and other small animals, so they may not be the best choice for homes with feline companions.

Can Greyhounds coexist with cats?

Greyhounds have a strong instinct to chase small animals, including cats. Their size and speed can pose a danger to cats, so caution is advised when considering this breed for households with feline companions.

Are Samoyeds cat-friendly?

Despite their happy appearance, Samoyeds tend to chase small animals due to their instincts. They may not be the best choice for households with cats.

Can Bedlington Terriers cohabitate with cats?

Bedlington Terriers have a strong prey drive and may bark aggressively towards cats and other dogs. This breed’s presence may cause stress and anxiety for feline companions.

Do Weimaraners get along with cats?

Weimaraners have a strong instinct to chase small animals, including cats. Proper socialization can minimize the risk, but caution is still advised when introducing them to feline companions.

Are Beagles suitable for households with cats?

Beagles have a strong sense of smell and can be determined in chasing small animals. Their ability to fit into small places can make it difficult for cats to hide, causing stress for the feline companions.

Can Shih Tzus coexist with cats?

Shih Tzus may exhibit aggression towards cats due to jealousy and demanding attention. They may chase cats away in an attempt to regain their owner’s attention.

Are Schnauzers compatible with cats?

Schnauzers may have a high-strung and barky nature, and they tend to chase small yard animals. This can add stress to a house cat, therefore careful introduction and socialization are required.

Do Irish Wolfhounds get along with cats?

While Irish Wolfhounds can coexist with house cats, their hunting instincts may cause them to chase and potentially harm small animals in the yard. Supervision is necessary during socialization.

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