A lot of people think that cats and dogs don’t get along, but this isn’t necessarily true. Cats and
dogs are very much capable of getting along. Furthermore, people think that only dogs play, thinking about tug-of-war or party tricks that make kids laugh. But cat’s play too. They even play together like they are the same species.
Here are a few games that you can play with your dog and cat that will strengthen their bond
with each other, and with you.
Most people will instantly recognize this as a game for dogs. You throw the tennis ball, the dog
runs and grabs it, then brings it back to you. After that, it is simply rinse and repeat. Cats can do this too. When dogs and cats play, they are often mimicking hunting behaviors. Fetch is just
catching some prey and bringing it back to you.
Get a dog and a cat toy and throw both. You just need to supervise carefully and make sure that no one is getting aggressive over the toy. The animals are both playing the game, just next to each other instead of directly with each other.
This is called ‘parallel play’, and it is something that allows the animals to get used to one
another without directly interacting. If your cat is wary of your dog, this will allow them to interact
in a supervised setting that builds trust that the dog is not going to hurt them, even in an action-
filled environment. The cat and dog are never going to get along if they don’t trust each other to be nice.
Tag is such a good game for dogs and cats, because it is about as close to working together as
your pets may ever get. The goal of the game is for you to hide somewhere, call for your
animals, and have them come find you.
The animals won’t be interacting with each other in any dangerous or uncertain way, but are still socializing and earning each other’s trust and simply having fun in the same space. Positive
exposure will breed fondness in your animals.
The unfortunate thing about this game is that cat’s don’t always take to it as fast as dogs. It is
definitely possible to get them to play along and come when called, but cats are stubborn creatures and this isn’t typical feline behavior. This may be a game for another day, or one that
is set on the shelf for a good, long time.
A lot of cats and dogs react to bubbles the same way that children do. They get very excited
and immediately try to catch and pop them.
Cats show off their natural grace, jumping and spinning effortlessly. Dogs tend to take the much
more pragmatic way, snapping at the bubbles with their jaws and trying to eat them out of the
This is another example of parallel play. The dog and cat don’t have to be directly interacting to
enjoy the game. However, it is a step up from fetch, as the cat and dog can interact together if
they wish. They may cross paths trying to get the same bubble, or a cat may climb on a dog to
get a better reach.
This lets them build a relationship. They start to learn boundaries and will probably be more
comfortable interacting without you present.
LASERS AND OTHER TOYS
Cats go crazy trying to catch the laser’s dot as it swims around the floor and walls. Dogs can
love this just as much as cats. Your animals can have fun together chasing and trying to catch
the end of the light. If the animals aren’t interested in the laser, sometimes other toys do the trick just as well. For example …
● Feather Poles. The feathers on the end of the fishing poles make for enticing prey for
● Bouncy Ball. A cat and dog might love batting a ball back and forth throughout the
This is an exercise that requires the animals to be comfortable with each other already. After all,
they would be chasing the same thing. A cat that is scared of the dog, or vice versa, will not
want to play at all, and might retreat completely if they get scared of the rushed movements of
the other animal.
Therefore, this is just an exercise in strengthening an existing bond between animals. They
know each other and trust each other, but actively playing with each other can make them
comfortable and even happy to be around one another.
We all want our pets to get along with each other. The best way to do this sometimes is to have
them spend quality, fun time together. Whether you have two young animals that grew up loving each other, or an older animal who is wary of the new addition, playing these games with your animals will strengthen not only your bond with them, but their bond with each other.