Tessa has an insanely high prey drive. So much so that we have to keep our cats completely separate from the dogs in their own room during the day, and when the dogs are in their room at night, the cats roam free.
Our oldest cat will not run from dogs, so instead of charging after her, Tessa will stand there and incessantly bark at her until I call her away from the gate. Unfortunately, our other cats are afraid of all dogs now, and they will run when frightened. I think if they didn't run, there might
be a very slight
chance they could cohabitate but we just don't risk it. Any kind of introduction stresses them out and she gets overexcited so we avoid it altogether.
I have an e-collar that I haven't yet used with her but have considered using in order to improve her recall. I also bought a DVD by Leerburg on e-collar training, but after learning more about positive training and the differences in some of his "old school" tactics, I'm not sure it's the approach I want to take to training her. I think I'd rather learn by observation and practice rather than attempting to train her based on my interpretations of his instruction. Hmmm, probably should've thought about that before I blew $50 on it.
Her recall, without any
distraction whatsoever, is at about 80%. If she catches wind of a prey animal, it drops to a flat 0%. That's where I hope the e-collar would come in. She becomes so intently focused on what she sees and/or smells, that it's all-consuming. My former trainer told me that there's really "no way to train
prey drive out of a dog". All you can do is practice and perfect their recall/obedience, and avoid putting them in situations where they may fail.
I'm not overly concerned about her drive outside of the house. She's never off-leash unless we're in an enclosed area and, fortunately, she hasn't killed anything. I rather want to encourage her to enjoy this instinct outside in order to give her an activity to enjoy, which is why we're trying out at a lure CAT next month.