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Old 12-16-2012, 07:53 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Default Alternative to harness walking...Pet Stroller

Based on your cat's experience after the buckles were tightened, it will be very difficult, maybe impossible, to get a harness on him again I expect.

Another alternative is to take him for "walkies" in a Pet Stroller---they come in various models and sizes. Altho you're getting the exercise, he will still enjoy all the different scents and sights he sees and be very secure in the enclosed stroller which is great when you encounter dogs. My two cats love to go in it and it seems to satisfy their urge to wander. They like the walks but are also happy to come back home. If you do get one, get one with wheels more than 5in. in diameter. The larger the wheels the better they will go over rougher ground or bumps. You'll need one that encloses completely (often with a nylon mesh) for cats; some pet strollers for dogs are open.

In winter I occasiionally use the stroller as a grocery cart, as I don't take my cats out at that time of year.

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Old 12-18-2012, 10:03 AM   #12 (permalink)
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Tequila and Maya both walk with harness and leash but only where they want to go. Since, a 30 minute walk can become over an hour walk, we decided to get a pet jogger. The best investment we made. They get the fresh air, they are safe and I get some exercise.

This is a clip of Tequila walking.
http://youtu.be/pH8YxZxwvTs

This is our pet jogger.
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Old 12-18-2012, 01:14 PM   #13 (permalink)
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There's another hurdle once you get him used to the harness--then e needs to get used to outside.

Mine doesn't mind the harness and let's me tighten it an attach the leash. He's not a big fan of the leash but he tolerates it.

I thought it was finally time to go outside, but boy did he disagree! It was so sad looking. He immediately reverted to scared wild animal mode (and he has never been feral or wild in his life!). He flattened himself to the ground and shimmied back to the apartment building door as fast as he could. When he got there he balked himself in a corner and was panting.

After that episode, I haven't tried again. We still play with the harness and leash indoors - I figure its good to have him used to it in case of an emergency or something, but outside has been out of the question.


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Old 12-18-2012, 09:08 PM   #14 (permalink)
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My boy cat loves his harness, once it's on, but it's always a small wrestling match to get it on him. He's fine and settles down and sits politely at the door like a puppy as soon as it's on, but the process of wrapping it around him and buckling it up took quite some practice and lots of time.

Tips that work for me: Fasten the body strap before the neck strap, and leave the leash attached to the harness body clip before you start, that way you can get hold of him again if he runs off with half the harness on. And make sure you know where his feet are, Sune would stick his feet through the harness in all sorts of directions before I got the hang of it.

Without the harness, he likes to door rush, but being a city apartment cat before he came to live with me, as badly as he wants to get outside, he's actually quite scared. So he is super easy to catch, usually goes no further than 2 meters from the door.

But it did lead to a funny episode the other day, when I was taking boxes out to the garage, and he came out the door with me, I figured I'd let him follow, see how he did. As expected he stuck to me like glue all the way to the garage, (a whole 20 meters, but it's a big adventure for him!) But on the way back to the house, a bird flew up from the bush and he delightedly sprung after it. Directly into a snow drift about a meter deep, which he promptly disappeared into.

He immediately bounced straight up in the air, the way you see baby gazelles do on nature documentaries, but he couldn't figure out what direction to go because snow everywhere he looked, so while I'm dying laughing, there is this huge fluffy orange boy sproinging in and out of a pile of snow, yowling like he was being murdered the entire time. By the time I rescued him he was shaking and shivering, and clung to me with his paws around my neck like I had just pulled him out of a shark filled ocean.

I think we'll probably put the walks on hold until springtime for now

Sune's big day out has some pictures if you would like to see his harness though (from just about the last day of autumn it was nice enough to go out)
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Old 12-18-2012, 09:16 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by krazykiwi View Post
My boy cat loves his harness, once it's on, but it's always a small wrestling match to get it on him. He's fine and settles down and sits politely at the door like a puppy as soon as it's on, but the process of wrapping it around him and buckling it up took quite some practice and lots of time.

Tips that work for me: Fasten the body strap before the neck strap, and leave the leash attached to the harness body clip before you start, that way you can get hold of him again if he runs off with half the harness on. And make sure you know where his feet are, Sune would stick his feet through the harness in all sorts of directions before I got the hang of it.

Without the harness, he likes to door rush, but being a city apartment cat before he came to live with me, as badly as he wants to get outside, he's actually quite scared. So he is super easy to catch, usually goes no further than 2 meters from the door.

But it did lead to a funny episode the other day, when I was taking boxes out to the garage, and he came out the door with me, I figured I'd let him follow, see how he did. As expected he stuck to me like glue all the way to the garage, (a whole 20 meters, but it's a big adventure for him!) But on the way back to the house, a bird flew up from the bush and he delightedly sprung after it. Directly into a snow drift about a meter deep, which he promptly disappeared into.

He immediately bounced straight up in the air, the way you see baby gazelles do on nature documentaries, but he couldn't figure out what direction to go because snow everywhere he looked, so while I'm dying laughing, there is this huge fluffy orange boy sproinging in and out of a pile of snow, yowling like he was being murdered the entire time. By the time I rescued him he was shaking and shivering, and clung to me with his paws around my neck like I had just pulled him out of a shark filled ocean.

I think we'll probably put the walks on hold until springtime for now

Sune's big day out has some pictures if you would like to see his harness though (from just about the last day of autumn it was nice enough to go out)
I literally laughed when I read this! Too funny! I can just imagine a big orange kitty afraid of the snow!

My kitten hasn't seen snow up close yet, he is a door bolter as well when his harness isn't on and boy does he RUN! I'm going to put his harness on, on Thursday when I'm off and see what he thinks.
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Old 12-18-2012, 11:17 PM   #16 (permalink)
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I actually bought two Come With Me Kitty harnesses a while back, so I'm glad to hear that that's a good choice.

I'll definitely take it slow. Coda was a stray, and is always looking out the window, and I found Cal outside, so I think they may be okay once they get outside so long as they're comfortable with the harness.

Thanks for the advice.
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Old 12-21-2012, 03:26 PM   #17 (permalink)
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my cats were once strays as well and one of the three had always seemed like she wants to go outside, so I also put a harness on her and walked her in my backyard. She was okay with the harness, but I guess once outside a new environment, she didn't seem interested and walked back towards the door. I think it is a matter of time before the kitty start getting use to it again although I don't do it often and only in warm weather time. A few caveats that I did hear about getting your cats use to the outdoors again is that once they are use to it, they might be more willing bolt out the door if someone leaves it open by mistake, and of course, the possibly of getting ticks and fleas if they don't have outdoor collars. Just be aware of those potential issues.

Last edited by mimi3908; 12-21-2012 at 03:28 PM.
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Old 12-21-2012, 08:22 PM   #18 (permalink)
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I use Advantage on both my cats, so I'm not too worried about fleas or ticks. One of my cats in particular will already bolt if the door is left open, so we just always have to be really careful and be bossy with guests about not leaving the door open. That's also part of why I really would like to be able to give both my kitties safe, supervised outdoor time; it seems like Coda especially really wants to go outside, and I don't feel good about having an indoor/outdoor cat. Maybe if I lived in a quiet, low-traffic neighbourhood I might feel differently, but I live right along a main road and it just wouldn't be responsible to allow either of my cats to roam unsupervised.

Coda has gotten out a few times. Most of those times she hasn't made it much farther than the front porch before someone's grabbed her, but once she was missing for a few days. Thankfully she came back healthy and unharmed, though she was missing her collar (another reason I'm glad she's microchipped).

Cal got let out by my friend shortly after I brought him home, and I was convinced that we'd never see him again when I lost track of him after I'd run after him, but he was sitting in front of our door when we got home after going out to get some food, bless his little heart.
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Old 12-21-2012, 10:33 PM   #19 (permalink)
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Please note Advantage does NOT protect against ticks... Which I've never understood why... but yea...


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Old 12-22-2012, 02:38 PM   #20 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zilla View Post
Please note Advantage does NOT protect against ticks... Which I've never understood why... but yea...


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I thought it did. Which is the one that prevents against ticks?
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