Do Boston Terriers Do Well with Other Dogs or Cats

Having been the owner of Boston Terriers for the majority of my life, I recently decided to add another breed to the mix. While I was slightly apprehensive at first, it ended up being a rewarding experience for both the dogs and myself.

Boston Terriers get along with most other dogs extremely well. It is recommended to socialize your dog from a young age, exposing them to dogs of all sizes and breeds so that they will understand the dos and don’ts of social interactions. This socialization is key for their future interactions.

If you’re curious about the ins and outs of raising a Boston Terrier with other pets or children, you should read on. I’ll also provide you with information on this breed’s overall temperament, including jealousy, aggression, and biting mentality.

Do Boston Terriers Do Well with Other Dogs?

Boston Terriers have a rather friendly personality that will allow them to get along with most other dogs. This breed does have an interesting way of displaying its friendliness. Most often these dogs will bark at another dog to greet them or to initiate play. It will not, however, signify hostility or fear.

Boston Terriers Jojo and Bosco

Interestingly, these smaller dogs do not typically fear larger canines and will bark at them for attention as well. While it may appear to you that your dog is trying to alert you to danger or make themselves seem like more of a threat, they’re really just trying to initiate an interaction.

The best way to ensure your Boston Terrier does well with another dog is to introduce them shortly after you get your terrier. This will alleviate any problems with territorial problems or feelings of jealousy. However, if this is not possible, your dogs should still become friends in a short period.

The more socialization you give your Boston Terrier, the better their behavior will be around other dogs. Begin the process at a young age for the best results. Introduce the dog to a variety of other dogs, including those of all sizes and breeds. The more you do this, the better they will understand what is acceptable behavior and what is not.

This breed does especially well with other dogs when they are raised together. This gives them time to get to know each other and test their boundaries. Because they start at a young age together, they often become inseparable, preventing you from having to deal with jealousy problems that Boston Terriers can be prone to.

Are Boston Terriers Aggressive?

With the right training and socialization, Boston Terriers are anything but aggressive. They are well-known for being excellent companion dogs and getting along great with the whole family, other dogs, and cats. 

However, if you do not socialize them, they can be aggressive toward strangers and other animals. In these situations, your dog may feel threatened or may feel that you are in danger, causing them to lash out at the perceived threat. Proper socialization teaches your dog what the correct response is to social triggers like meeting new people and prevents this kind of behavior.

JoJo the Boston Terrier playing outside

They are natural hunters and will consider smaller pets like rodents to be prey so it is not advised to keep both as pets at the same time. 

Are Boston Terriers Biters?

Boston Terriers are known for being a non-aggressive breed and therefore are not known for being biters. However, if you do not socialize your dog properly, there is the potential that they may become a biter. Without proper training, they will not know the correct social cues or how to handle interactions with people other than their family.

If you would like to read our post on if Boston Terriers bite please check it out HERE. Just remember that any dog can bite but some or less likely than others.

Additionally, when they are a puppy, they may bite and nip as part of the teething process but you can easily train them out of this behavior. Ensure that you provide enough chew toys to keep them distracted.

If your dog has severe separation anxiety, it can be a cause for biting. They will show aggression with everyone, including you. You will need to consult with your veterinarian and may need to consider getting a companion animal to ease your dog’s anxiety problems.

When your dog gets over-excited during playtime, they can bite. While your dog is not intending to cause you pain, the bite will often hurt. You will need to be careful of how excited you get them and what kinds of games you start. 

Boston Terriers will most likely bite out of fear. They will perceive that they are in danger and lash out with their teeth as protection against the threat. Similarly, if they feel they are in a situation with no other way out, they will bite in self-defense. It is your job to train your dog that biting is not the solution.

Other reasons your Boston Terrier may bite are if they are abused, in pain, startled, or frustrated. Whenever your dog is overwhelmed by any situation, it can lead to them lashing out. It is not malicious behavior but is still a problem that needs to be dealt with.

boston terrier puppy

The important thing to note with all of these situations is that they are not common. Your Boston Terrier, when trained and socialized appropriately, is going to be a very sweet, loving, and good-tempered dog. Biting will not be in their nature. As long as you do your part, you will not have to worry about any of these situations.

Are Boston Terriers Jealous Dogs?

Unfortunately, your Boston Terrier can be a very jealous dog. Because of this, they will mistrust strangers and feel threatened by anything that appears to be taking your attention away from them. They have the potential to act out by coming between you and the threat to bark, nip, and whine.

When your Boston Terrier is jealous, they will do everything in their power to get your attention back on them. This includes being destructive right next to you. They will also attempt to get in your space to nuzzle you. If there is something new in your life like a new partner, baby, or pet, they will try to chase them away from you, staking their claim on you.

Additionally, you may notice problems like your dog eliminating in the house. Normally, your Boston Terrier is going to be very particular about their elimination practices, routinely going outside. So when they start having accidents, you will know there is something wrong. Jealousy can be enough to cause problems. 

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You can overcome this behavior by training your dog to love the object of their jealousy. This can be a difficult task, especially if that object is a new baby. However, try using positive reinforcement with treats to associate good behaviors and the object with a happy outcome. Eventually, your dog will overcome their jealousy.

Understanding the Relationship Between Boston Terriers and Cats

Boston Terriers and cats will get along better if they are raised together but they can be acclimated to one another at a later stage in life. They will not typically bark at a cat like they will other dogs but they will get along with them well enough. 

Unlike other terrier breeds, the Boston will chase your cat playfully, not as in a predator-prey situation. They will also be acceptable companions for kittens. However, you will not want to have this breed around anything smaller than a cat as their hunter instincts will kick in and your pet will become prey.

When considering introducing Boston Terriers and cats in the same household, it’s crucial to understand the natural tendencies and behaviors of Boston Terriers towards feline companions.

Many pet owners often wonder about the compatibility between Boston Terriers and cats. These concerns are valid, as the interaction between a dog and a cat can vary greatly depending on the dog’s breed and temperament. In the case of Boston Terriers, known for their friendly and adaptable nature, the chances of forming a peaceful relationship with cats are generally high, provided they are introduced and socialized correctly.

Survey Results

I have surveyed 50 Boston Terrier Owners on Twitter, and the results from the survey have been a little mixed. Mixed in the sense that it was almost an even split between Boston’s who have been exposed to cats and never exposed to cats.

The majority of Boston owners who did expose their Boston to cats experienced no problems. 

Forms response chart. Question title: Is your Boston good with cats?. Number of responses: 50 responses.

Further Reading: Check out the full survey results here, 50 Boston Terrier Owner Survey Results. The questions and answers will help you gain insight into this lovable breed.

Do Boston Terriers Get Along With Cats? 50 Owners Surveyed – Boston Terrier Society

Are Boston Terriers Good with Kids?

Because of the stockier, sturdier build of Boston Terriers, they are more comfortable around children than other small dogs typically are. Even though the children are bigger than they are, they don’t feel intimidated and aren’t afraid to play. 

However, regardless of how comfortable your dog is with your children, you will still need to keep an eye on playtime. Accidents can happen where your dog inadvertently hurts your child. While they don’t mean for this to happen, it will put undue strain on the relationship between your dog and your child.

kid playing with out boston terrier

You will also need to ensure that you are socializing your dog with strangers. This will ensure that they understand what is the proper behavior when someone new comes around. Otherwise, there is the potential that they will show aggression to protect your family, especially your children, from a suspected threat.

How to Acclimate Your Boston Terrier to Another Dog

When you plan on bringing a new dog home, don’t just expect your Boston Terrier to accept them. You’ll need to do a slow transition to having both dogs living together. Have the first meeting outside. If your Boston Terrier is territorial about any space and the new dog walks over it, there could be trouble. 

You’ll want to ensure that you keep everyone on a leash for the first few interactions. There’s no telling how everyone is feeling, whether there’s stress or anxiety, so it’s best to maintain control over the situation. 

Bring treats with you so that you can offer both dogs treats for a job well done. This can be something as simple as not barking or jumping on the other dog. However, you’ll want to keep the first few meetings brief to prevent any problems. The longer they spend together, the more potential there is for disaster. It is ok if they sniff each other and have some interaction. 

When you finally bring the new dog home, set up a divider to keep the two separated. A baby gate will work fine as long as the new dog cannot jump over it. You’ll still need to continue with the small meetings between the two dogs, gradually increasing the length of time each one lasts. 

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Eventually, work your way up to leaving them alone while you step into another room. This way, you will be close enough to step in if there is any aggressive behavior from either dog. If all goes well, you will soon be able to leave the two alone while you are gone from the house. Make sure before you do this that you have several successful meetings without you in the room under your belt.

It’s important to remember that you don’t want to push your Boston Terrier too hard or too fast to accept this new dog or vice versa. These things take time and patience. While your Boston Terrier is generally a nice and agreeable dog, they will need to make a huge adjustment to having another dog around.

FAQ: Boston Terriers, Cats, and Other Dogs

  1. How do Boston Terriers generally interact with other dogs?
    • Boston Terriers are known for their friendly and sociable nature, making them generally good with other dogs. Socializing them from a young age with dogs of various sizes and breeds is beneficial for their behavior and social skills.
  2. Can Boston Terriers get along with cats?
    • Yes, Boston Terriers can coexist peacefully with cats, especially if they are properly introduced and socialized early on. Their amiable temperament often makes them adaptable to living with feline companions.
  3. What’s the best way to introduce my Boston Terrier to a new dog?
    • When introducing your Boston Terrier to a new dog, it’s best to do it in a neutral environment. Monitor their interactions, keep both dogs on leashes initially, and allow them to sniff each other. Reward calm and friendly behavior.
  4. How should I introduce my Boston Terrier to a cat?
    • Start by allowing them to get accustomed to each other’s scent in separate spaces. Gradually introduce them in controlled, short sessions, ensuring both the cat and the Boston Terrier are calm and comfortable.
  5. Are Boston Terriers prone to chasing cats or smaller animals?
    • While Boston Terriers may exhibit a playful chase behavior, they are not typically aggressive towards cats. Proper training and ensuring your Boston Terrier is well-exercised can help manage any chasing instincts.
  6. What if my Boston Terrier shows aggression towards other dogs or cats?
    • If your Boston Terrier shows signs of aggression, it’s important to consult a professional trainer or behaviorist. They can provide personalized guidance and strategies to address and correct this behavior.
  7. Do Boston Terriers prefer the company of dogs or cats?
    • Boston Terriers are generally adaptable and can enjoy the company of both dogs and cats. The key is proper socialization and ensuring that each pet’s personality and space are respected.
  8. How can I ensure a harmonious household with my Boston Terrier, other dogs, and cats?
    • Provide each pet with their own safe space, supervise their interactions, and reinforce positive behaviors. Understanding the individual needs and boundaries of each pet is crucial for a peaceful coexistence.


Boston Terriers are phenomenally friendly companion animals that get along great with other dogs. You will find you obtain the best results when you socialize your dog early, giving them experience with a variety of dogs. This way they will know exactly what is the correct behavior when greeting another canine. When adding another dog to the family, it’s best to do it as soon as possible after bringing home your Boston Terrier to prevent them from developing any territorial or jealous behaviors, making the process much easier.

In addition to getting along famously with other dogs, your Boston Terrier will be great with your cat, unlike other terrier breeds. It may chase your cat but it will be playful, not vicious. However, anything smaller than a cat will become prey in the eyes of your dog and is not recommended to be kept as a pet in conjunction with your Boston Terrier. This breed also makes a great companion animal for children. Despite its small size, it has a stockier build that allows it to play with children and not be fearful of their size.

With proper training and socialization, all problems with aggression and biting can be avoided. Your Boston Terrier will not fear strangers or feel threatened when they are in new situations. You will also be able to understand bouts of jealousy and help train your dog through them.

In conclusion, the key to a successful relationship between Boston Terriers and cats lies in proper introduction and understanding each animal’s unique personality traits

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