It’s easy to imagine someone walking their dog on a cool evening, but change the image from a dog to a cat, and everything starts to look weird. While shooting a cat may seem somewhat out of place, should you attempt taking them out on long walks?
Cats don’t derive much fun from walking outside the home as dogs do. If you ever take your cat on a walk, you should try starting from shorter distances. Over time, you can work it up to longer distances as the cat gets more comfortable.
If you can ignore the rude onlookers for a second, I’ll show you some tips for going on a long hike with your cat. In this article, you’ll also learn how long cats can walk comfortably and how to know when to stop.
Is It Weird to Take Your Cat for a Walk?
Weird doesn’t necessarily equal bad. If something looks out of the ordinary, it’s weird. Since most weird things are bad, people seem to always attribute weirdness to improperness, which should never be the case.
Back to the question, it certainly looks weird to take a cat on a walk, but that’s if you care what others think. Walking is usually attributed to dogs; cats have their way of exercising and burning excess energy, making the process of walking quite unnecessary.
If you’d rather not get a few unusual stares from onlookers, you should probably reconsider the decision of walking your cat on a leash. Apart from that, there’s nothing wrong with walking your cat on a regular Saturday morning.
Can Cats Go on Long Walks?
The answer to this is entirely dependent on the cat. In most cases, cats can walk for as long as a human can, but cats are also very rebellious. Sometimes, your cat may decide not to wear the leash, let alone go for a walk, and you must respect its decision.
Cats are very introverted animals, unlike dogs. They don’t seem to derive much fun from walking around with you; most cats would rather be fast asleep instead. If your cat agrees to a walk outside at all, you must keep it short and sweet, or you’ll walk yourself the next time.
Generally, you shouldn’t walk your cat for more than 15 minutes at a time, but the sweet spot is closer to 10 minutes. Also, there isn’t any assurance that your cat will be willing to go on a walk. If they look unmotivated upon seeing the harness, you should probably forget it.
Is It Cruel to Walk a Cat on a Leash?
There isn’t any correct answer to this question, as cats’ personalities can vary very widely. While some cats seem to enjoy being walked like dogs, other cats find the activity somewhat uninteresting, and in some cases, even stressful.
The main goal is to find out what your cat thinks about walking. If your cat seems to like walking, you can try a long walk someday, after an extended amount of tries with short distances.
If your cat seems to be troubled by the walk, however, continuing to walk them anyway will be pretty cruel. Walking a cat at a very noisy place can also be stressful to the cat, an action which amounts to cruelty on your part.
How to Take Your Cat on a Walk
It’s very possible to walk your cat without coming across as cruel, but you have to forget all the experience you had walking your dog. Cats are very different from dogs, and your cat will almost certainly hate whatever your dog loves on a walk.
With that being said, it’s also important to note that long walks can be pretty stressful for cats. While some cats will have no problems walking somewhat long distances, the fact that the word “long” doesn’t say much about the distance makes it hard to give any advice.
If you’re walking your cat in any case, there are some best practices to which you must adhere for the ultimate experienced. Here are some of the best tips for walking cats to make the process better.
- Get a harness and a leash.
Before taking your cat on a walk, it’s important to restrain it with a harness and have it under control using a leash for maximum safety. This is to be expected, as cats are famous for being somewhat badly behaved.
Cats are evasive, and they hate being restrained in any way. When you use the harness and the leash for the first time, your cat may try desperately to find its way out of the restraint. If it’s the kind of cat that can ensure walking, it will eventually grow to tolerate the leash.
When choosing a leash and harness for your cat, you should ensure it’s neither too tight nor too loose. Generally, the restraint should be loose enough to fit two of your fingers apart from the cat’s neck.
- Ensure the cat is very comfortable.
If you like watching cat videos across the internet, you must have seen someone dragging their cat forcefully in a bid to walk it. Needless to say, this activity is very wrong, and you should never attempt to walk your cats this way.
Instead, it would help if you let your cat walk around with the harness for some time. This will help them get used to it. It’s also important that you’re not always in control of the leash every time, as this will cause the cat to associate wearing the harness with discomfort.
If they act agitated or tense with the harness on, you should remove it immediately. If you’re finding it difficult getting the cat to like the restraint, it may not be cut out for walking after all.
- Try walking the cat.
Once the cat appears to be very comfortable in the leash and harness, you can try taking your cat on a long walk. To keep it less stressful, you should start with short walks inside your home. Outdoor noise can easily stress out cats, compelling them to look for escapes.
Once the cat appears comfortable with short walks, you should consider lengthening the distance. Over time, you should be able to walk your cat over a long distance without much trouble.