If you have a cat and want to get a dog but are afraid for your kitty, cats and dogs can get along and vice versa if you have a dog and would like to get a cat. You do have to make sure first that the dog you get is not aggressive towards cats. Any rescue can tell you that, although shelters may not be able to tell you because of the lack of information on the dog. If you have a dog and want a cat then you obviously can tell if your dog is aggressive towards cats. If they are then by all means don’t get a cat, you don’t want to be responsible for killing the kitty.
First off the kitty must be made the alpha, not because cats rule and dogs drool (cats can also drool) but because they are small and fragile and can be easily injured even killed by a dog even small dogs. So your dog must learn that the cat is the alpha and respects the cat.
Second kitty must be allowed on all high places, counters, bookshelves, refrigerator, etc. Anyplace high and out of reach of the dog. Make sure each room has a place for kitty to get up high when it wants to. Cat trees are great for this but they must be high and secured to the wall, the bigger the dog the higher the tree.
Third get fully enclosed cage for your dog to be in 2 or 3 hours a day so kitty and dog get use to each other being in the same room. When your dog is out put kitty in YOUR bedroom and don’t let your dog into your bedroom even at night for a few weeks. This will help your dog learn the cat rules otherwise your dog will still think he or she rules. You can kennel your dog in your bedroom at night as an alternative. Feed kitty first, let your dog see you loving on kitty.
After about 6 to 8 weeks put a muzzle on your dog when kitty is around except at night when dog is in his or her kennel. You will have to monitor the situation yourself, it may take longer. Make sure you are always disciplining your dog when you see any aggressive behavior even aggressive play towards kitty. This is one time when bad behavior must be disciplined for the sake of the kitty’s life. You will start noticing your dog leaving kitty alone or even sniffing each other without your dog getting excited. Dogs excitement can many times turn into aggression so your dog must prove him or herself that they are submissive to kitty before they can ever play and snuggle together. If you are patient it will happen. See the end result and don’t push it, some of the most loving relationships are between a cat and a dog. Trust your instincts and always monitor, monitor, monitor. You can even seek help from a dog trainer and include them (the dog trainer) in your plans for a new dog or new cat.