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Leash Training?? HELP!

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 
Does anyone have any suggestions on how to transition my kitty into the life of 'being walked'? I bought a harness and a leash for him, and I have let him get used to wearing it, (he isn't bothered by it at all) but when i attach the leash to he harness, and try to get him to walk, he sits there and stares at me with this look that says "who are you kidding?". I tried to get him to walk after a piece of food, but that's didn't work either...

He's 3 years old, is it possible that he's too old to learn?

Any suggestions/hints/tips would be greatly appreciated! Thanks!
post #2 of 6
try letting him run around for a while with the leash attached to the harness, but without you holding it. Let him get used to that before you pick up the other end. We gave ours 1 hr with harness and leash, 3 times a week, for 2 weeks before they were comfortable enough to walk, and you have to be very patient. They don't walk like dogs do... cats walk YOU.
post #3 of 6
A previous cat of mine was taught at about the same age as your cat. He hated the leash too. So one day we decided to just put it on and go outside and that was it. The first time we tied it outside and all went inside and stared out the window at him in the yard. My cat walked to the very end of the leash and laid down with his body as far from the leash as possible. We all held our breath. About about 20 minutes we brought him inside. The next day we tried it again and he acted like this was something he had been doing forever!

We never did really master the "walking" thing though. The closest we got was going in the direction he wanted to and back.

SO.... I guess all that is to say.... I don't have a tip at all!
post #4 of 6
Start first by laying the leash out for the kitty to see it. Lay it near his food bowl, let him get used to seeing it a lot before you even put it on him.

Then put it on him in the house and just let it drag behind him. Follow him closely and if he starts to freak out, scoop him up and take it off. Repeat this as many times as you have to before he just doesn't give a rip about it.

next step is to take him outside with harness and lead. Put him down on the ground, hang on to the leash and follow him. If he wants to just lay down, let him, but don't drag him around, just go where he wants to go (within reason). Keep doing this a few times a week until he gets used to you being so close to him. Then using kitty treats, start coaxing him into walking with you, small steps at first, again DON'T drag him anywhere. Before long he will start coming with you willingly without you having to resort to bribery.

Good luck!
post #5 of 6
When "walking" your kitty make sure all shots are up to date. You will be exposing him or her to a LOT of "germs". There may also be dogs, big scarey cars/trucks, and other things that will spook the kitty. They can pick up fleas, and ticks as well. Make sure to check the kitty over well when you get home to remove these pests.
Just a word to the wise. You and your kitty be safe!
post #6 of 6
I got my first kitty a harness from Target so he could learn to walk on it. He didn't exactly like it, but it helped me keep him out of the street, etc. I would let him go anywhere else he liked.

Unfortunately, he would frequently dart under bushes...which is just impossible with a leash. Other times he would run up a tree...so I would be forced to let go and just pray he didn't get hung up there. (He didn't)

I still go on walks with my cat...sans leash. He loves it, even demands a walk some nights! He walks between the shrubbery and the apt buildings. He knows he is safe there, and he can still follow me almost everywhere.

Cats are pretty smart that way!

I still keep that harness around. I think it's great to have. You never know when you'll need to use it, and it's a wonderful thing to have your kitty accustomed to wearing it.
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