More and more people are walking their cats on a leash, although this is not a common practice. In fact, walking cats on a leash is possible, but you just need to take into account a number of rules and tips so that walks do not become a nightmare for the owner and for his pet.
The first thing we have to consider when taking a cat for a walk on a leash is that it will not behave like a dog. Cats are impatient and will not be disciplined when it comes to walking outside with their owner. The function of the leash is to prevent the cat from running away, jumping or climbing somewhere, since it is at this moment that the owner may begin to have serious problems with maintaining control over the situation. That is, the leash works correctly only when the animal walks "under us", on the ground.
To go outside, it is better to choose a time when the cat is in a calm state. It is advisable to first practice on a leash in a place where he feels safe. You can try putting a leash on your cat at home so that she gets used to it and does not cause her discomfort (by the way, good advice for dog owners too). You need to tie the leash not to the collar, but to the harness.
Choosing a place for a walk
For the first time, you can try to use a place where there are no other animals, no fuss, no vehicles nearby. It should be a short walk, sometimes even a few minutes is enough. Put a harness and leash on your cat in advance and take it for a walk in your arms or in a carrier.
Lower the cat to the ground and let it walk ahead of you. Cats that are accustomed to living at home very often experience a certain "agoraphobia" (in other words, fear of open spaces without the ability to easily leave them) outdoors. On a walk, they seek cover, which makes them feel less vulnerable, or in other words: more invisible. A cat, like a good hunter, does not want to draw attention to itself, and if she is used to living at home, going out into the open area, where she is in full view, can be her worst nightmare.
Don't force your cat to do what it doesn't want to do.
If you see that your cat does not want to get out of the carrier, refuses to walk, shows anxiety and nervousness, do not force it. This is the worst thing we can do to a cat.
On the one hand, walking outside can be beneficial for cats, as cats are very curious members of the feline family. However, walking a cat on a leash is not as comfortable as walking a dog. On the other hand, "restriction of freedom" can eventually work against everyone, so if your cat is uncomfortable or if the leash and its trajectory are constantly tangled, it is necessary to determine to what extent these outdoor walks are pleasant and useful. Don't force yourself to succeed where you don't have to.
See also: Mustachioed and tailed: interesting facts about cats.