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Purrfect Match: Which Pets Live Well with Cats and Which Do Not

Thinking of adding another animal to add to your existing household, but worried it won’t get along with your cat? Learn which species tend to get along with cats and which won’t fare well around your feline.

The most important factor to consider when choosing a pet to live with your cat is your cat’s temperament. For some cats, their prey drive and self-preservation instincts won’t jive well with extra pets. Other cats who are more gentle and friendly may be able to cohabitate with pets not typically well-matched with cats.

Which Animals Get Along Well with Cats and Which Don’t

Good with Cats


While it’s possible a rambunctious cat may try to paw a pet fish, a well-enclosed fish tank is typically all that’s needed to keep aquatic pets safe around cats. If your cat does end up trying to paw the glass, it likely won’t affect your fish.


As long as both pets are properly introduced to each other and taught boundaries for safety, ferrets and cats often live well together. Ferrets are typically social animals who play well with others, but you’ll need to help your cat become accustomed to their presence before allowing them to interact, so they learn not to be afraid or to view them as prey.

OK With Cats


While not all dogs get along well with cats, those raised in households with cats tend to become more comfortable around them. If you already have a dog and want to adopt a cat, consider your dog’s prey drive and aggression levels first as they may not take well to a feline companion.


Of the smaller animals typically kept as house pets, rabbits tend to get along best with our furry friends. In the wild both cats and rabbits tend to be territorial, which can cause issues in some cases with the cat usually causing more harm. However, rabbits tend to have dominant personalities and due to their similarities, often end up friends with cats that aren’t also very dominant or aggressive.

Bad with Cats


These feathered creatures tend to be the favorite prey for housecats, so it’s unadvisable to keep birds, especially small ones, in the same home as cats. Even if birds are confined to a cage, any pawing or taunting from a cat will cause anxiety and fear for the birds. Some cats are capable of cohabitating with larger, exotic birds, however, it’s possible your cat could be intimidated by a large bird and end up acting aggressively toward it.


Similarly to birds, rodents such as hamsters, mice, rats and other small animals are at a high risk for being attacked by cats. Most cats will not be able to differentiate between a pet rodent and a wild rodent. A chinchilla or guinea pig may be able to coexist peacefully with cats if the cat is not aggressive, however, care should be taken to slowly introduce both pets to each other with close supervision.


Though many wouldn’t expect it, cats can also be very aggressive towards reptiles such as lizards and snakes and are known to hunt them in the wild. Most reptiles are shy and easily frightened and would not fare well living with a curious cat, even if well-confined in an enclosure.

In the end, it really comes down to your cat’s personality and their ability to play well with others. Some cats are just meant to be only-children and rule the roost the way they see fit. Have more questions about cat care? Submit them to our cat experts and your question might make it onto our social media or blog!