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Will a Bernese Mountain Dog Get Along With My Cat? The Surprising Answer!


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bernese mountain dog with a british short-haired cat

Bernese Mountain Dogs are a fluffy, good-natured dog breed that is popular with first-time dog owners. They’re great with humans, but it may take some work to make them suitable roommates for felines. Like most dogs, Bernese Mountain Dogs can become fast friends with many cats, but how do you go about the process?

We have the info you need about the personality of Bernese Mountain Dogs, how to socialize cats with dogs, and more. Stay tuned for the specifics and some tips below.


Bernese Mountain Dog Personality & Temperament

Bernese Mountain Dogs are a less popular dog breed, but they have the personality and temperament for any family. From experienced dog owners with kids to first-time dog parents, Bernese Mountain Dogs are easygoing and relatively low-energy pups. They’re not super demanding and make perfectly respectable couch potato pets.

Most Bernese Mountain Dogs have a mellow temperament in respect to other dog breeds and animals, including cats. The most important thing to keep in mind is that socialization from an early age is essential to successfully introducing a new Bernese Mountain Dog to your cat. This can vary a bit based on whether the dog is a puppy or an older dog, but many of the steps are similar.

bernese mountain dog and cat lying on the floor
Image Credit: Louis-Philippe Poitras, Unsplash


How to Introduce a New Bernese Mountain Dog to Your Cat

Introducing a new dog to your cat can be a harrowing experience, but with a Bernese Mountain Dog, it doesn’t have to be. You’ll likely observe less aggression on the dog side, but you still have to consider your cat’s temperament as well. Use our simple step-by-step guide below to carefully introduce your new dog to your cat.

How to Introduce a Bernese Mountain Dog to Your Cat:

  1. Give your cat a safe space. Keep the two in completely two areas for a day or two, which will get them used to each other’s scent before they meet.
  2. Leash the Bernese Mountain Dog. Gradually introduce the two with the dog on a short leash, watching for aggressive behavior from either pet.
  3. Utilize positive reinforcement. Feed your cat and dog near each other in separate areas and give treats for when they use calm behavior around each other.
  4. Take your time. You don’t have to rush the introductions, and every pet has their own tolerance for unfamiliar interaction. Let them dictate how fast the process goes.
  5. Give some trust. You may be unsure, but letting your dog off the leash around your cat after a certain point is a necessary step toward building their relationship.

Tips for Socializing Bernese Mountain Dogs With Cats

There are a lot of other tips you can use to make your home a more welcoming atmosphere for your new Bernese Mountain Dog, while also fostering a positive relationship with your cat.

Bernese Mountain Dog & Cat Socialization Tips:

  • Start them early. Younger pets will have an easier time adjusting to each other than older ones.
  • Create and maintain a safe space. That is, a neutral territory where you can slowly socialize your dog and cat.
  • Keep them separated when you’re not present. Each pet should have their own stress-free area with all their favorite bedding and items.
  • Redirect them with treats and attention. Positive reinforcement is the best way to train your pets to get along.
  • Supervise them at all times. Otherwise, calm cats may have negative first interactions with dogs and vice versa, so you have to watch for signs of aggression from both pets.



Bernese Mountain Dogs are a relaxed breed in general, but both they and cats need some help to become the best of friends. Using patience, safe zones, and their favorite items, you can have your Bernese Mountain Dog used to your cat in no time.

Featured Image Credit: Valery Shklovskiy, Shutterstock

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