Sunday, June 8, 2014

Scaredy Cat, Part 1: Introduction to Rehabbing a Cat/Dog Relationship Gone Bad

This is Lola:

And this is Nicky:

And Lola hates Nicky. Well, "hates" might be too strong of a word, but she is definitely not a fan. In fact, she finds the kitty to be downright scary. In true Basset fashion, Lola expresses herself by barking. A lot. And loudly. Not only does she bark constantly, she's decided the best way to do so is by getting thisclosetohisface. Nicky, unsurprisingly, finds this annoying and retaliates by swatting her with his fully-clawed paws. Which just makes her bark some more.

Oh, and did I mention that Nicky and Lola will be living together soon? Yeah. Clearly, something needs to be done here. Luckily, I've done tons of work helping dogs overcome fear in the last five or six years, so I'm up for the task.

I have a three-pronged plan in mind:
1. Management (click here for a somewhat-related post on management)
2. Classical Counter Conditioning (click here if you need a refresher on counter conditioning)
3. Teaching Operant Behaviors (click here to find out why)

My plan is to write one post for each of these prongs, as well as our progress along the way. If you have a dog/cat relationship that needs help, please let me know what kind of problems you're running into and I'll try to include information to address those concerns!

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