How to forgive your dog for killing your cat

Times like this one will be what will test the love that you claim to have for your pets. Sometimes, our love can be very conditional, unlike our dogs’ love for us. In a case where you love your pets so much and your dog ends up killing your beloved cat, you may feel very terrible, and other ideas can creep into your mind.

The idea of forgiving them should be the best idea that you should come up with, I mean, what if he wasn’t being aggressive at all but was playing? If You want to, but don’t know how to forgive your dog for killing your cat, here are some things you can try;

Why did your dog kill your cat?

Forgiving your dog for committing such an act Is a process and could take a while. You don’t have to do it either. Regardless of what you choose to do, one thing you must understand is that there was a reason why your dog killed your cat, and these reasons should be the basis on which your decision may stand.

  • Prey drive/ Predatory behavior

When a dog sees a smaller animal fleeing, its primary instinct may be to see, stalk, chase, catch and bite, kill-bite, dissect, and devour, and this sequence is referred to as a “fixed action pattern” by scientists. Some dogs may not follow this pattern through, however, it may be difficult to see a dog that doesn’t have it in them.

It could be that your dog saw your cat fleeing or running and playing in a certain way, and his prey drive was triggered so it pounced on your cat and killed it, this wasn’t intentional, and he was just acting based on his instincts which you do almost all the time.

  • Jealousy

If you’ve treated your cat with so much more love than your dog, you should be the least surprised with this end. This is why it is encouraged that you treat all your pets the same way, especially when you are together, with no special treatment. You may have trained your dog not to hurt or chase your cat when you are there, how about when you are not?

If you were the type to neglect your dog because you loved the cats more, it is possible that your dog chose to get rid of the competition when you were not around, I’m so sorry about that and hope you learn to be a better parent now.

  • Lack of socialization

Lack of socialization may also be one of the reasons why your dog killed your cat. This is seen mostly in cases where the dog doesn’t know the cat or the cat has been to someplace other than the vet or litter box. That is why you hear of cases where a dog kills a kitten, this is because the owner didn’t take all the necessary steps to socialize them before leaving them together.

  • Territorial behaviour/ Stress

I would mark my territory if I noticed a stranger trying to invade, what would you do? If your dog has a pack mentality, and your cat decides to go out of line, it could act as a trigger for your dog’s aggressive nature. Maybe this led to a conflict, and while your dog was trying to establish boundaries he killed your cat.

It could also be that your cat’s actions or movements were stressing your dog, and your cat failed to read the signals of a stressed dog, hence this sad event.

How to forgive your dog for killing your cat?

Thinking about what triggered your dog to behave in such a way is the easy part, the hardest part is what to do with your dog now that you feel this way. You won’t be the first to think about revenge, sending your dog away to another home, or worse a shelter, but would you be able to forgive yourself after that? The best thing to do is to forgive your dog, and here are tips on how to forgive your dog for killing your cat.

  • You just lost your cat, so Grieve!

I mean, I’m more of a dog person and if the tables were turned, I’d like to take time to grieve my precious furry boy, and this is exactly what you need. Take your mind away from the cause, what you could have done, or what you didn’t do right, and embrace the troubling feelings you have, like anger and sadness, but make sure not to take it out on your dog.

There’s no deadline or expiry date for grieving, you can take as long as you need, and if you can’t stand your dog for that period, you can send him over to your neighbors for some time and not feel guilty about it.

  • Do not attribute blames

Blaming either the dog or yourself would only make things worse, so instead, you need to admit that your dog acted based on his instincts and does not necessarily understand the gravity of what he has done. Also, rather than beating yourself up for your cat,’s death, You should also show yourself some compassion and forgive yourself.

In times like this, one must always remind oneself that accidents happen all the time, and it is not always our fault, and even when it is our fault we must try not to trap ourselves in guilt or worse, the past!

  • Take training and supervision up a notch

Now this is very important because we would not want this to happen again, so train your pets to have respect for each other’s boundaries, and know when to stay or when to go. When the pets are outside playing, make sure the dogs are on a leash, to reduce impulsive attacks on the smaller pets.

Also, give commands and treats as a way to encourage positive behavior, then find a way to help them channel their prey drive through play, e.g. Playing catch with a ball.

  • Get closer to your dog

To forgive your dog for doing something bad like killing your cat is a huge step, and because the past few days/weeks must have taken a toll on you both, it’s time you brought them close, because your feelings and your actions may have caused your dog to become confused. With a little more love you can get closer to your dog once again while you try to get over the loss of your cat, I mean you can’t just punish him forever.

How to Trust Your Dogs Again

  1. Understand that your dog is not being aggressive or evil, rather his actions were borne out of instincts.
  2. Implement some changes as regards your pet’s training, home environment, and even basic supervision.
  3. celebrate your cat’s life alongside your dog, this would encourage bonding
  4. Be patient and devoted to the growth of your dogs.

Read ThisIs Costco Peanut Butter Safe For Dogs?

Final Words

There are so many things that could have taken place, that we can only keep guessing, but I’m sure that whatever it is, it’s most likely not your dog’s fault, and if your dog is aggressive, you would have been aware before now.

If you want to know how to forgive your dog for killing your cat, you must consider that this didn’t happen because you didn’t give your cat enough training or because your dog has become too aggressive, you can blame nature, nature did this one. Forgiving your dog is a bold step to take, It may take a while, but with a little effort, you and your dog can become lovebirds once again.

Josh Krul

Hi, I am Josh, an avid dog lover who has spent 15 years with my lovely buddies. Lingonpets is a platform to share my experiences.

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