Let's Talk: Would You Ever Take Your Cat for a Walk?
My wife, Kim, and I and our dogs visit one of the many parks near our house every afternoon. It provides our dogs the mental and physical stimulation they need to keep them healthy. As a matter of fact, it does the same thing for us. This is a great excuse to forget about work and any other challenges going on. It’s a fun part of our day and something we all look forward to. The dogs start to get a little excited as lunch hour approaches. They know exactly what time of day it is and are always ready for their ride to, and run in, the local park.
As we load up the dogs in the truck, we see some of our cats lounging around in the garage or driveway or under a tree. We always make sure to say hi to them, let them know when we will be back, and tell them to be safe while we are gone. We then drive to the park, run and play, and then return home.
As we pull into the drive, we notice our cats again. Most of them are still in the same places. If I didn’t know any better I would think that they hadn’t moved a muscle since we left the house. I caught myself thinking: Look at those lazy kitties. They must be living the life of luxury and don’t have a care in the world. It’s a nice gig if you can get it.
But it made me wonder: Do people ever take their cats out for walks?
I asked some of my friends who have cats. Most of them looked at me like I was crazy. They said that their cats mostly stay inside and lounge in the air conditioning. Occasionally their cats will visit the back porch or deck for some sunbathing. If they’re real adventurous, they’ll walk around the backyard or garden.
However one friend has a special kitty harness and a short, thin leash and she will walk her cats around the yard, around the neighborhood, and sometimes to the local beach near her house. The cats are a little older and are easy to control on leash. Once they have the harness and leash on, they seem to be very comfortable. They seem to enjoy their time outdoors, as long as it’s not for too long. Perhaps they don’t get as excited or anxious to go for walks as my dogs do. But, they do seem to enjoy themselves.
I would think that you would have to have a quiet area around your home for the cats to feel really comfortable outside while being controlled by a leash. I would also think that the activity of people, neighborhood dogs, and cars may be a little bit of a challenge. I don’t recall seeing any pictures or videos of cats being walked on leash in downtown San Francisco, for example. Sometimes, that amount of activity is too much for people, let alone a cat walking on a leash down the sidewalk.
I wondered also if people looked at my friend like she was crazy once they saw her walking her cats on a leash. She said that most people smile and think that it’s pretty neat. I’m sure they can’t wait to tell others about the unusual sight they saw earlier in the day.
I think it is pretty cool. Why not provide some mental and physical stimulation for your cats? We do it for our dogs, so what’s the harm? Maybe a new trend is starting and new jobs will open up for kitty walkers, just like we have for our dogs.
Have you ever thought of taking your cat for a walk? Would your cat allow you to place a harness and leash on them? Share your stories and pictures in the comments.
About the author: Tim Link is an all-American guy who loves to rock out to Queen while consuming pizza and Pinot Noir, prefers to associate with open minded people who love all critters, considered to be the literal voice for all animals -– author, writer, radio host, Reiki Master, animal communicator and consultant.
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