Which Dog Breeds are Good with Cats?

which dog breeds are good with cats

Would you know which dog breeds are good with cats?  When someone hears the saying, “fighting like cats and dogs,” they might guess that cats and dogs are and have been eternal enemies since the dawn of time. Beyond their portrayal in the media as hypervigilant, aggressive, and bloodthirsty for cats, there are actually many dog breeds that get along well with cats. You might even say that some dog breeds go so far as to be friends with cats! 

Discover Which Dog Breeds Are Good With Cats 

Certain classifications of dogs are best suited to live and get along with cats. This predisposition is because their breeds tend to be friendly, sociable, or agreeable. Examples include toy or sporting group members, some of which we’ll showcase ahead. When considering what dog breed to welcome into a home with a cat, you’ll likely benefit from meeting with your veterinarian and doing extensive research based on both the dog’s and cat’s breeds. Ahead, we’ll share all the great qualities of the top dog breeds that are good with cats. 

Golden Retriever 

Golden retrievers are generally known to be sweet and easy-going dogs. They were initially bred to retrieve waterfowl and game, and they have a gentle disposition that makes them ideal family pets. This friendly nature makes them less likely to view cats as prey and more likely to be tolerant and accepting of their feline housemates. 

Golden retrievers are also highly trainable and adaptable, which means that they can learn to coexist compassionately with cats given sufficient socialization and training. They are intelligent, goofy, and eager to please, so with consistent reinforcement, they can learn to understand that cats are part of the family and should be treated with respect. Ensuring that your golden retriever gets plenty of daily exercise can also ensure that it keeps interactions playful with the cat. 

Labrador Retriever 

Labrador Retrievers, like Golden Retrievers, are generally known for their loving and gentle nature. They are highly social animals and enjoy spending time with their human families, including other pets like cats.

Labrador Retrievers are generally playful dogs and enjoy social interaction with other animals. They are not possessive, so they are more likely to accept your cat into their inner circle. Labs are loyal and eager to please – with proper training and socialization, they can learn to play nicely with cats and other pets. 


Originally, the beagle was bred to hunt in groups – it would not be uncommon for a beagle to welcome a cat into its at-home “pack.” That said, it’s best to keep only one beagle in a home with a cat since more than one can dominate the cat. 

which dog breeds are good with cats

Beagles have an enduring reputation for their sweetness. They love to nuzzle up against their humans and enjoy socializing with other pets. Both cats and beagles share a strong level of curiosity, making them excellent problem-solvers for all the “mysteries” that go on in the house.

Cavalier King Charles Spaniel 

As they’re lovingly referred to, Cavs are ideal housemates for cats in that they retain their small puppy size for all their lives. Cats are less likely to be intimidated by a dog close to their own size. Affectionate and cuddly, King Charles spaniels are bound to be caught napping with their cat sibling. 

This dog breed is good with cats because it maintains both a gentle and fearless nature. Your cat can both be wildly entertained by and feel at ease in a house with a Cav. 

Shetland Sheepdog (Sheltie) 

which dog breeds are good with cats

While Shelties have historically been bred as herding dogs, their high level of trainability enables them to co-exist peacefully with cats. The dynamic will largely depend on the dog’s temperament. A strong prey drive entails an instinct to herd and chase animals, though many Shelties just don’t maintain a high prey drive. 

Giving regular exercise to your Sheltie can ensure that it doesn’t turn the cat into a plaything. As Shelties need regular entertainment, a cat companion can provide an excellent distraction. They will no doubt enjoy observing the cat as it pounces from room to room. 

Basset Hound 

Like other dogs on this list, the Basset hound was bred for hunting purposes. With a laidback, dare we say “chill” personality, the Basset hound makes a dog breed that’s good with cats. What’s more – your cat may entertain the Basset hound to such a degree that he reduces his tendency to howl! 

How To Introduce Your Dog To A Cat 

Before you introduce your cat and dog to one another, ensure a safe distance between them. Give them space to take in smells and sights. Consider crating the dog so the cat can approach it, especially if it is a larger breed. 

which dog breeds are good with cats

Your cat will likely want more space than the dog. Consider a gradual pace of desensitizing your cat to its new partner. What objects or features of your home can you use as removable barriers – couches, bookshelves, tables? In other words, does your cat have an accessible location where the dog cannot get to it? 

Monitor your dog and cat when they get closer to one another for the first time. If your dog is food-motivated, you might have treats on hand to redirect inappropriate behavior. Make sure to reward both the cat and dog through praise for getting along well and engaging in positive behaviors. 

It’s okay if your cat and dog don’t get along immediately. Sometimes deep relationships take time to form. Know that the dog breeds featured in this list have a genetic predisposition to be good with cats. This ensures a solid foundation upon which the two pets can build a friendship.

For more information about this subject or general questions you can contact:

Courie Dennis with Posh Paws Pet Care, LLC
Visit our website at PoshPawsPetCareSC.com
Or send us a note from our contact page here.