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Old December 12th, 2010, 07:53 PM
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jassy3399 jassy3399 is offline
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cats and leashes

Okay, my living situation is that I'm in a second floor apartment. I have a balcony, but it's made of iron bars that's very uncomfortable to walk on, so being outside there is out of the question. I'd like (once the weather turns nice, stupid Wisconsin snow) to be able to take Gizmo outside with me and the dog. To that end, I purchased a harness, since I thought it would be a good idea to get him used to it while he's still so young, rather than waiting until he's mostly grown to try. I can get the harness on him, and after a few minutes of twisting around, he gets used to it and ignores it. but once I clip a leash on him, all he does is lay down. he refuses to walk while the leash is clipped, even though I'm not trying to tug or direct him in any way. I have seen cats on leashes. I know it can be done. Am I going about this the wrong way? I've tried the leash just a couple of times, and only for about 5 minutes, since he looked so depressed and I don't want to traumatize him. Help! I want him to be able to explore outside, but if I can't get him comfortable enough with a leash, that's just not going to happen.
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Old December 12th, 2010, 08:08 PM
pattymac pattymac is offline
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Cats are not the easiest to train to walk on a leash, at least not like a dog. You can always try a short leash and just let him drag it around in the house. Lots of treats helps too, if he's got a favourite. A light cat leash is the best to use. When I used to take my cats out on a leash and harness, it was more a case of just following them around while they explored. My one cat though once he figured out it was time to go in the house would lay down and refuse to move. I'd have to pick him up and take him back in, with him snarling and growling the whole time.

There is a drawback to taking them out on a leash, once they discover how much fun it is out there, they become escape artists! Wouldn't be so bad in an apartment, I would guess.
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Old December 12th, 2010, 08:38 PM
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jassy3399 jassy3399 is offline
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Oh, he's already an escape artist! Getting in and out of the apartment can be, hmm, adventurous at times. He's tiny and he's quick, and he's incredibly eager to explore.

how short are we talking? something like 12 inches, or more like a light, thin dog leash? I could leave something like that on him for a while, as long as we were in the bedroom (i've got a reclining couch, with movable parts under that a trailing leash could get hooked on)
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Old December 13th, 2010, 07:58 AM
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I would do as Pattymac suggested. let him drag the leash around, he'll get used to it. You can encourage him to walk by placing a treat about 10 feet in front of him, or playing with a laser light. Once he starts walking, you can then start training him on stopping and turning direction by gentle tugging the leash in the direction that you want him to go, once again using treats to entice him to go in that direction.

Good luck.
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Old December 13th, 2010, 08:18 AM
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Melinda Melinda is offline
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we put a harness on my moms kitten when he was 4 weeks old and hooked half a dogs nylon leash on it, he's now 5 months and walks everywhere on leash with her
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Old December 13th, 2010, 02:39 PM
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I've leash trained cats, but as Pattymac said it's mostly about following the cat around to where cat wants to go. At the time we had a 1/2 acre property and cat was content to walk the perimeter of the property, and yes some gentle pulling in a different direction worked about half the time. Off our property the cats were very insecure and a dog or motorbike going by would freak them out. I don't want to put a damper on your dreams of walking dog and cat together, but I think it would be very difficult. A loose strange dog comes up, a bunch of kids running down the sidewalk, or motorbike and cat freaks out? Then what? That kind of situation would be very difficult to manage, as some cats just go berserk in trying to get away and may bite, or worse wriggle out of their harness and run off!

What you could do is buy a Pet Stroller for the cat, and then you could take your dog for a walk at the same time. Most pet stores sell them.
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