How to walk your cat on a leash?
It could be a good idea because you and your cat would get to exercise together, and your cat would escape his boring indoors routine. But do not use a collar, because cats have softer throats than dogs. A cat can easily slip out of a collar, or choke if the collar gets stuck on a tree branch.
A better option is to have a stroll with your kitty wearing a cat harness or a cat walking jacket. The walking jacket is the safest bet, because it is more comfortable for your cat to wear and gives him more freedom. The leash is attached towards the middle of a cat harness or cat walking jacket, which is more comfortable and safer for your pet.
To make sure you buy the right harness or jacket, follow the manufacturer’s instructions to measure your cat’s girth. Usually, you measure it behind his front legs.
How to put a harness on a cat and train him to walk outdoors?
Before walking your cat on a leash outdoors, you must make sure that your cat will be OK with that. Some cats love going out on a walk with their owner, while others hate it. You should first leave the cat harness or cat walking jacket with its leash on the floor in your home, and let your cat smell it and get used to its shape.
When your cat finally gets used to this weird object, put the harness or jacket on him without the leash, and have some kitty treats ready to reward him. The first time you train your cat, he might freeze or try to remove the harness/jacket. You should hold the treat in front of him to distract him and get him to gradually get used to the harness/jacket. Each training session should be short and training a cat requires lots of patience. Another good idea is to put the harness or cat walking jacket on your kitty right before his dinner. That way, he will focus on his food rather than try to get rid of the harness/jacket.
After a few days, try to attach the leash on the harness/jacket and let your cat wander around your home while you hold the leash loosely. Don’t force your cat to follow you where you want to go with the leash. Let him roam freely and get used to the harness or cat walking jacket with the leash. And don’t forget to give him a treat to reward his good behaviour.
If you see that your cat is getting used to it after a while, great! But if he hates it, maybe you should forget about walking your cat on a leash.
If everything goes well, it’s time to go for a walk! Once you feel like your cat is ready, attach the cat harness or cat walking jacket safely around him and try to go for your first walk outside. A good idea is to always hold your cat in your arms when you exit your home and when you get back to show him that you’re in control and that you protect him. When you start walking your cat, stay close to your home and don’t go crazy with your pet. Your cat might be a little scared at first, especially if there are dogs or loud noises in the street. Take it easy, and with time, your kitty will get used to it. A cat is not a dog; you won’t be able to run in the park with him or visit busy, stressful places. Just have little, calm walks with him, and let him smell and explore his environment.
Who knows, after a while, your cat might be the one scratching the door to beg you to go out! In that case, always be careful that your cat doesn’t run away and get lost.
I hope you enjoy having nice strolls with your cat!