Are Fox Terriers Good With Cats? Tips For Getting Them Along

Are Fox Terriers Good With Cats? Tips For Getting Them Along

When we hear the word pets, two animals typically pop up in one’s mind; dogs and cats. Both of them are famous domestic animals adopted by plenty of households. Dogs and Cats make great friends with humans, but do these two animals get along with one another?

Many face this question when getting pets; in most cases, the answer depends on different breeds. In other words, while some breeds of dogs and cats cope pretty well, others might not. Through this article, we will find out if Fox Terriers are good with cats. 

So, are Fox Terriers good with cats? Fox Terriers are generally not good with cats. If you are familiar with the Fox Terrier breed, you might already know that these dogs have bold and feisty personalities. They adore human companionship yet are not the biggest fans of other pets in the house. Therefore, Fox Terriers and cats are not very compatible together.

This does not mean having both a Fox Terrier and a cat in the same place is impossible. However, you must take specific actions to train your Fox Terrier to be less dominant and aggressive toward cats.

Dogs have different temperaments. Terrier breeds are typically dogs with lively and dynamic personalities. Coming from the Terrier dog family, Fox Terriers are not only charismatic dogs but also perfect family friends.

At certain points, they can be overprotective and clingy over the owners, which could ignite jealousy within them to have other pets around.

Furthermore, the natural hunting instinct they inherit also makes them less amicable toward cats. To understand further, keep reading!

Are Fox Terriers Good With Cats?

As mentioned earlier, Fox Terriers are not very cat-friendly dogs. It is not the best breed to have around cats because they usually prefer being the only pet in the house.

Their dislike towards cats is something that is closely linked with their personality and the genes that they own. 

Dogs and cats are domestic animals, but if you trace their primitive roots, these animals initially belong to the predator category.

Even though they’ve been domesticated, you may find instances where they indicate their prey drive.

Most Terrier dogs, including Fox Terriers, were developed for hunting purposes. If we observe the roots of Fox Terriers, they were bred as hunting mates to hunt Foxes.

Nowadays, Fox Terriers are considered family pets rather than hunting dogs. Yet, as they predominantly descend from a hunting background, it is not bizarre to see predator behavior within them, at least to a small extent.

Fox Terriers have strong senses and are very alerted dogs. They are small, yet they have a body posture that helps them chase after their prey and catch them easily.

Cats are also predators and have solid hunting skills, but they are very cautious of things that threaten them.

Cats usually see dogs as a potential threat and often attempt to stay away from them; this behavior of cats could trigger Fox Terriers to catch them.

Furthermore, Fox Terriers are good watchdogs; they are protective of their masters, and having a cat around their masters usually doesn’t please a Fox Terrier.

The more the cat acts fearful of a Fox Terrier, the more they get suspicious and hostile toward the cat. 

Are Fox Terriers Aggressive Toward Cats?

There is a fine line between disliking cats and being aggressive toward cats. As discussed in the previous section, Fox Terriers are not so good with cats.

It raises the question of whether this makes Fox Terriers aggressive toward cats. You can’t precisely answer this question.

Nevertheless, the possibility of them being aggressive toward cats is very high, especially if they lack socialization.

Aggression is mainly caused by prey drive. Fox Terriers are no longer interpreted as hunting dogs.

Still, they have embedded hunting genes, which might get visible sometimes, mainly when other small animals are around.

When Fox Terriers are aggressive toward cats, they likely hurt or even kill them. However, keep in your mind that this will not be the case with all Fox Terriers.

Moreover, there are effective mechanisms that help reduce the aggressiveness of Fox Terriers toward cats. 

How To Introduce Fox Terriers And Cats?

Here we have come to the most crucial part. Fox Terriers typically dislike cats due to their natural prey instinct. They often see cats as prey, so they attempt to attack them.

Many will not recommend having a Fox Terrier if you already have a cat in your house, which is not wrong advice.

But there are exceptions too. The behavior and personality of dogs have changed over the years than they used to.

Although Fox Terriers are initially hunting dogs, they do not always show intense predator behavior.

Most importantly, if you follow the proper mechanisms, you will find it easier to diminish their aggressiveness and make them get along with cats. 

Making a Fox Terrier a friend with a cat will not be a task you can do within a day; it is most likely to be a process, and the sooner you start, the better it will be successful.

If you own a Fox Terrier, you must socialize them from the pup stage, preferably when the puppy is around 8-10 weeks old.

When they have exposure to socialization from a young age, it will be easy for you to introduce them to cats.

Below are some common and helpful tips that you can follow to do this safely and effectively.

  • First things first, before introducing a cat to your Fox Terrier, ensure that the dog is familiar with the basic commands such as stay, sit, and down.
  • You will find it easier to handle them when they are familiar with the commands.
  • You should not let the Fox Terrier and the cat meet the eye to eye at the very beginning. It is better to keep the two animals separate. However, convincing them to feel each other’s presence is vital.
  • To make it effective, you can feed them on opposite sides of a closed door. First, they will be a little distracted by this; eventually, they will learn to associate with it. You can follow this tactic for 3 to 4 days.
  • After a minimum of 3 days, you can proceed to the next step, face-to-face meetings. When introducing a Fox Terrier to a cat for the first time, make sure you use a collar and a leash to hold the dog.
  • Do not pull them aggressively; utilize the demands like stay, sit and focus on how the Fox Terrier responds to the cat’s encounter. Perhaps it might be somewhat arrogant or very calm; either way, keep these initial meet and greet sessions as short as possible. If they indicate good behavior, reward both of them with a snack which will be an optimistic stimulator for future sessions. 
  • When you keep repeating face-to-face sessions for a couple of days, they get used to each other’s presence. It is essential to do these sessions daily; if not, neither of the pets will get the hang of it. Eventually, you will feel that the two animals are getting along better; then, you can lose them together.  
  • Tensions may still create though the two pets are good with each other. So always be cautious. Especially if the Fox Terrier and the cat keeps rejecting one another, do not force them to get along; it could worsen the situation. If you find it out of your control, it is advisable to get help from a professional trainer. 

How To Stop Fox Terriers From Chasing Cats?

Fox Terriers are great chasers by nature. They are fast, energetic, and willful, so they barely miss a chance to chase their prey. It is not possible to completely avoid a Fox Terrier from this behavior. However, you can reasonably reduce it.

The easiest and most basic way to stop a Fox Terrier from chasing cats is by teaching them commands. When a Fox Terrier is familiar with commands such as stop, stay, and leave, they likely obey them.

As aggressive as they are, Fox Terriers are also obedient dogs; they respect their masters, so teach them the relevant commands. You can also keep your Fox Terrier on the leash when you take them out for walks.

When you handle the leash smoothly, you can avoid them running after cats in the neighborhood. It will take a considerable amount of time, yet you can stop a Fox Terrier from chasing cats through proper and consistent practice.

Final Thoughts 

Some may believe that dogs and cats are great fellas, whereas some think otherwise. This is not a question that can be answered precisely.

Many factors, including the personality type of the animal, genes, and training, decide whether dogs are good with cats or not.

Fox Terriers are outstanding family dogs but are not the ideal breed to have around cats. They naturally do not mesh well with cats primarily due to prey drive.

However, this can be mitigated through proper actions. It might not guarantee that a Fox Terrier will be best buddies with cats, but they will get along to some extent without causing trouble.

Stay tuned with Jack Russell Owner for more interesting posts. So until next time, goodbye!


  • George Brown

    George B. is the founder of the JRO Organization. He believes in creating a better world for domestic animals. He believes domestic animals are more vulnerable than other animals, especially dogs, since they have been used to depending on their owners for generations. So, he started JRO to share his ideas and insights while helping vulnerable dogs worldwide. George runs multiple projects on street dogs in developing countries, especially Sri Lanka.

Similar Posts