Last September, Harley came to live with us. A five year old female cat, picked up by the SPCA with an unknown background. Apparently they figured out she didn't like cats. Well, we figured out she doesn't like dogs either.
Having a large husky / wolf cross, we knew that bringing in a kitten may not be the best thing. Takaya had always had a cat in her life, and while she did have the natural "chase" instinct - for the most part she was fine. She even got along with my parents cat. So, we decided to get a grown up cat who could fend for herself. And it's always nice to give an older cat a home.
We should have called her basement. Because that is where she took up residence. Despite the newly installed cat door to allow her to come and go to the litter box at will, she knew life was safe down there. The dog didn't come to visit.
We tried everything. Viewings through gate, one on one with a leash - even no holds bar go at 'em down and dirty meetings. Still, the love was lost. The cat would not go past the dog, and now the dog wanted to know what the other furry thing was - so got excited when something new was happening.
Then last week.........the fight. I could hear Takaya making noise, but what I didn't realize was that she made it to the basement. Harley territory. The dog stayed back...and then the cat literally jumped onto the dogs face and hung on for dear life. It took me a minute, but I was able to separate them.
I wondered what I was thinking. A old cat meeting an old dog. Stupid stupid, stupid. But that fight did something. It made Harley realize she could win. Two days later, she came through the cat door and into the living room all on her own. Chris put the gate up and let her wander.
Then tonight, the dog and the cat - in the same room. No chasing, no freaking out, no blood. Peace. Harmony.
Takaya was sooooo good trying to just let the cat check things out. And surprisingly, Harley was pretty calm about the deal.
So are we are at the point where we can all live in peace? I hope so. I really hope so.