WISHING for a pedicat of your own? Here are tips from Jackson Galaxy for training your cat on a leash.
1. Know your cat. If it doesn’t mind being handled, is pretty confident and not easily spooked, it’s probably a good candidate for leash training.
2. Get the right gear. It is not safe to walk cats on a traditional collars; if they escape up a tree, a breakaway collar will detach, while a standard collar can strangle them. Mr. Galaxy prefers two styles of walking jackets, though a harness made for a cat is also fine.
3. Hungry is good. Many cats respond to food treats, so start with a hungry cat. Cut treats into tiny pieces, because when a cat gets full, it will stop working. Only give the cat treats when you’re doing the training, and limit the overall amount.
4. Start small. In the first session, place the harness on the cat with confidence, and fit it snugly but not tightly. The moment you’ve finished putting it on, give your cat a treat. If the cat then falls to the ground and plays dead, give it a treat if it moves at all. If it is willing to try walking in the harness, give it a treat when it takes a step. The moment the cat starts seeming overwhelmed, remove the harness and give a treat to end on a high note. Throughout the process, give lots of praise and head pats.