Having your cat join you for some outdoor adventure can be a great idea. It may be a small walk by the pool or a quick run in backyard; spending some quality time with your cat is always needed. But before you take it out, you need to find a suitable harness that will fit it comfortably and teach them to walk on a leash. Leash training is critical – the reason being it not only helps you while taking your cat for a walk outside. But also, when you are traveling or on a family trip. Your cat will love to get some exercise, and you will enjoy it too.
Is Leash Training Cat Good Idea?
If asked, there can be a thousand reasons to list down on why cat training leash is better idea, its comes with a physical activity. Like children, cats can be very active when young. But as they slowly grow up, they tend to become lazy at times. Taking your cat for routine walks and encouraging it to play or do some physical activity will easily keep him engaged, active, and in good health. If your cat tends to go out and plop down on grass or wants to lick itself – cat training leash is a better option for him to get started with and stretch his muscles. The saying’ curiosity killed cat’ is true because feline creatures tend to be very curious. It needs to lick, bite, smell or chew anything they find new around them.
Cats are insatiable beings and love to explore world around them. Being stuck inside house for an entire day may not be beneficial, as it is a much smaller world to explore with little space to jump and play around. This results in a cat becoming bored with its mundane life. With leash training, your cat will gain confidence to walk outside and interact more with people, other pets and settings, noises, etc. Other than this, let’s not forget an essential reason to kitten harness train.
How to Leash Train a Cat?
Regular walks with your cat in park or going on an outdoor adventure together will also be a perfect setting for you to strengthen your bond with cat. Now that you know all the benefits of leashing your pet, let’s understand how to train cat to walk on leash it in detail.
#Step 1: Introducing The Harness To Cat
First of all make sure to choose the best cat harness, which is a obviously small dog leash. Getting your kitten used to a harness can be a tough job. Hence, we need to make sure that cat is introduced to it positively and friendly. The best possible way to keep them harness placed next to its food bowl. The cat will smell it, touch it or even play around with it. Next, you need to make a cat accustomed to the sound of harness Velcro. Cats have sensitive hearing, and new noises can alarm them. So, try snapping a Velcro now and then in front of it and let it get used to it.
#Step 2: Trying Harness On The Cat
Tricky part is where you do not want to force the escape proof cat harness on it. As soon as your feline gets used to having the harness, slip it on, but do not fasten it. Make sure that your cat is distracted by some other activity when slipping harness on it.
It will keep a cat distracted enough not to try and remove it. The best time to do this will be right before dinner time. Mealtime will keep them occupied and reduce focus from new sensation.
Try to repeat this activity for several days in a row until cat seems comfortable enough in it. When your cat is comfortable, you can start fastening the cat harness and leash and adjusting fit. Your pet might not like it and try to get away from it.
If that happens, stop the activity and repeat it the next day until it gets used to it. If your cat is no longer running away from you on a fastening harness, let it stay on for a few minutes and give your cat some treat. It will please it and make it aware that it should not behave negatively on the fastening harness.
#Step 3: Attaching the Leash To Harness
Treats are key to training your cat to walk successfully on a leash. It may take more than a couple of days for your cat to get used to wearing a harness and walking around with it. But as soon as you notice your cat being comfortable with it – it’s time to attach a leash to it. Make sure that while doing it, your cat is in a room with less clutter, else you may be at risk of it getting tangled on some furniture and alarming the cat.
Let the leash drag behind the cat and let it move around freely. In case dragging leash alarms your cat, hold on to end and let him play around freely. Your cat will slowly become used to the feeling of leash. Practice it on a cat regularly inside the house and follow him around while holding on to leash.
After a couple of days, you can start guiding him slowly. Gently apply pressure on the leash and try to call cat to you. Award him with some praises, pats, and treats if it comes to you. This will help reinforce the desired behaviour of cat.
You need to ensure that you do not alarm the cat or terrify him by applying pressure to leash. It might frighten him and cause him to wriggle out of leash in a desperate way to get away from it. Hence, as a pet parent, you will have to be very patient and gentle while doing it.
#Step 4: Going Outside With The Cat On A Leash
If your cat is already used to the outdoor world, it will be easy for you to control its excitement by walking out of the door. But if it’s first time – there can be two scenarios. Either your cat is too scared and is hiding behind your feet or is too excited and can’t wait to run out.
Try not to take your cat too far from home in both cases. The backyard will be the best place to start, and if it is fenced – the better it will be. As it will reduce the risk of your cat wriggling out of harness and running free.
First step will be to tie a harness and leash inside house, pick up your cat and carry it outside. Don’t let your pet walk out of door with a retractable cat leash on; it will get used to walking even without a leash. Stand next to the cat and let it decide what he wants to do next and if it is ready for exploring.
Make sure that leash is loose enough and also do not force him to go where he doesn’t want to. Let the cat roam around as father as it wants. Slowly keep increasing the duration and distance from house while taking him out on a leash, and let him get comfortable with it.
Which Cats Can Be Leash Trained?
Not every cat can be leash trained, and some kittens wish to remain inside a house and spend quality time with their pet parent. But in case your cat loves to run around, and is very active, responds to treats, or is clicker trained. Then your cat will be the right fit to get leash trained. It will help him stretch his legs, get some muscle exercise, and become more confident in an external environment.
A happy kitty is a healthy kitty. Cats can be a handful, and if you are a new pet parent, it can get tricky at times. Always try to make your cat as comfortable as you can while leash training. Remember that you cannot enforce on him without being gentle and patient. Having a lot of treats and its favourite cat toys will help you with that.