Leash Training For Cats

(credit: Stan Honda/Getty Images)

(credit: Stan Honda/Getty Images)

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By Nan Talleno

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) - It’s not uncommon to see a dog being walked on a leash but it’s quite a rare sight to see a cat in the same situation. Although it may seem unusual, it’s interesting to know that many cats can frequently learn to walk on a leash as well as dogs.

Remember that this is not for all cats, however. In fact, be aware that it may not be for most cats. Just like people, personalities differ and a cat should never be forced into any situation under stress.

According to the Humane Society of the United States, timid or aggressive cats may not enjoy and may also not be suited for such a venture but that other more adventurous cats may relish this supervised outdoor experience with you. Also kittens may be more adaptable to learn than adult cats.

If you attempt to train your cat, be prepared that when training is foreign to your cat, it will take plenty of time, repetitions and patience as well as sufficient tasty rewards. As with all training, always proceed safely and gently. Stay positive and make it a gentle and positive experience for your cat.

Select a very light harness (specifically made for cats) that fits well. Never attach the leash to the collar, only to the harness. Do not use retractable leashes and never yank or pull. Be alert for any signs of stress on your cat and stop immediately.

Watch for body language and respond accordingly.

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