Welcome to Authentic Bengal Cats.
On this website, our aim is to answer all of your Bengal cat questions and help you ensure that your Bengal cat ownership experience goes as smoothly as possible (and – sometimes – help you decide that a Bengal might not be the right pet for you and your family).
In this short piece we are looking at whether or not it is possible to introduce a puppy into a home that already has a Bengal cat.
Let’s imagine you have a “middle aged” Bengal at home who is set in his/her ways, but then you decide that you are going to bring a puppy home.
Is this possible? Or is it going to end in disaster?
If possible, is it recommended? How do you actually make the whole process run as smoothly as possible, so that your new puppy gets to settle in nicely but not to the detriment of your Bengal cat, who may well be a bit uncertain about this new family member of yours?
Patience & Supervision Are The Keys
The goods news is that you can definitely introduce a new puppy into your home with an existing Bengal cat.
We would know – we have done it twice (bringing two puppies over several years into a home with an older Bengal).
From personal experience – and based on expert advice – there are a couple of key strategies you need to deploy in order to make this process as smooth and as effective as possible.
The first is patience.
You need to accept and understand that it will likely be quite a slow process to get your adult Bengal acquainted with a new puppy.
Remember that cats are not particularly fond of change. And all of a sudden you’ve allowed a new “invader” into their territory and space, and getting used to this is simply not going to happen overnight.
It may take weeks, months, and possibly even longer for your Bengal cat to become used to and accepting of your new puppy. There’s no particularly easy way to speed up this process either – you kind of have to let it evolve organically.
The second crucial factor is supervision.
The “old fashioned” concept of letting your puppy and cat duke it out to work out their differences is not particularly smart, and could lead to serious injury for either or both animals, and actually a worse outcome. Don’t leave your pets to fight, and separate them if this does happen.
Therefore, make sure that your puppy is never unsupervised around your Bengal cat. You shouldn’t really leave a puppy unsupervised anyway, so hopefully this will be easy enough for you to achieve.
One way to make this process easier is to ensure that your Bengal is given a room or area that is definitively his/her territory.
Remember that cats are territorial animals, and part of the “mistrust” that will naturally occur between your puppy and cat is due to the perception (or reality) of your cat’s territory being invaded and challenged.
Ensure that your Bengal has adequate access to food, water, toys and a litter box in this area as well.
If you can follow these steps, you will likely find it much easier to integrate your new puppy into your home that has an existing, mature Bengal cat.
To wrap up, it definitely is possible to introduce a puppy into a home that already has a Bengal cat.
However, you will need to be careful with how you approach this, as it is generally more difficult to achieve this successfully than have a Bengal kitten enter a home with an older dog.
Remember that while your puppy is young, your Bengal is likely to have the capability to inflict serious injury if he/she feels threatened.
We advise you basically avoid any opportunity for your Bengal to be left alone with your puppy in a situation where there is no adult human supervision.
This will massively reduce the risk of any fights, and therefore injuries to either pet.
Over time, your Bengal should warm to the puppy. However, don’t expect this to be an overnight process.
It has taken our Bengal cat, Kala, quite some time to get used to our two black labradors. She is finally fairly comfortable around them, although it would be a stretch at the same time to call them friends!
Given sufficient time and patience, it should certainly be possible for your pets to play “happy families” with each other. Just don’t expect it to happen overnight.
If you have any good tips/insights/strategies for helping puppies and older cats bond, then we welcome your input. Just leave a comment below to start the discussion.
Thank you so much for reading, and we will see you next time.