Lesson Learned

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In January of 2010 we adopted a husky from a rescue group.  She was 2 years old at the time and we named her Alusia Sue.  When we brought her home she grabbed a hold of one of our cats and started to violently shake the cat, I yelled at her to drop it and she did only to go after another cat.  Thankfully both cats were okay physically and the socialization to cats began.  Since that first attack Alusia never touched a cat again.  She knew that cats entering the room meant praise and treats.  Cats could lie next to her and she would ignore them.

Flash forward to September 2013, I made a mistake.  Yes I the human made a mistake.  We never leave Alusia alone with cats because like I tell my clients you can never predict a dog’s behavior 100% of the time and it is not worth the risk.  I left to pick my daughter up from school and I left Alusia in the bedroom with our cat Charlie.  When I came home I knew something was very wrong because our cat Milo was puffed up and yowling at the bedroom door.  I opened it to find Alusia attacking Charlie.  I immediately got her outside and ran to Charlie’s side.  I have worked as a veterinary assistant so I checked him for wounds only finding a skin abrasion but I knew that, that does not mean that he did not have internal injuries.  I could tell from his mannerisms and his eyes that he was in shock.  I immediately gave him sub cutaneous fluids and placed him on a heating pad while speed dialing the vet.  The vet said to bring him in immediately so I rushed him down.  I had done a good job of treating the shock but shock is a scary unpredictable thing.  So Charlie was hospitalized and xrays were taken and he was given iv fluids.  He suffered no internal injuries. Charlie will come home to recover in a few hours, the next 48 hours remain critical.

I always tell my clients that dog’s behavior can NEVER be predicted 100% of time and this is a case in point.  I made a mistake, not Alusia, me.  Alusia and I will definitely be spending some time on training but I will never leave her alone with a cat again.  This is a risk we take when we have homes with different species, it happens.  It is how we handle it and the lessons we learn that change the way things happen in the future.  Most importantly Alusia is not a bad dog.

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2 Responses to “Lesson Learned”

  1. julierayfield Says:

    I had the same problem with my husky-mal cross. My first husky grew up with the cat and the 2 could sleep together, but I wouldn’t leave them in the house alone. The cross we got at 6 months old and a couple of weeks ago he got hold of the cat that was trying to sneak past a sleeping dog, as he could do with husky 1. The drop command didn’t work, but after my daughter and I wrestled with him for a while the cat was dropped and ran off. The cat was just a bit stiff the next day and is now very wary of dogs, but I sustained some nasty cat bites that resulted in a very swollen hand and anti biotics. I don’t think the cat will go near the dog again.

    • r3dogz Says:

      I’m sorry to hear that Julie. I’m pretty sure Charlie (the cat) tried to sneak past Alusia (the husky) while she was sleeping as well. I’m glad that your kitty is okay. Charlie is getting used to our dogs again, including Alusia. However, they will never be allowed together again without direct supervision.


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