Summer is here and it’s time to get outdoors! Skip the cat nap and take a hike with your feline friend! That’s right, believe it or not, you can take a hike with your cat! Cats may be known to spend their days napping inside or being super independent and exploring the wild outdoors, but you can train your best friend to come along on an adventure with you! Best of all, hiking provides great mental stimulation for your cat. Living an active lifestyle is another excellent way to ensure cat wellness.
Before you hit the trail together, here are some tips for your journey!
Go Slow & Train
Just as you’d train for any race, take the same care and precaution with your adventuring buddy. Prepare them for the trail by starting slow. Be patient as they adjust to this new way of exploring the outdoors. Remember that part of the fun is enjoying the whole journey – even the preparation! Starting out when your kitten is young is also key! Raising a confident cat that is comfortable in any environment will result in a rewarding relationship as they grow older.
Assessing your cat’s wellness is an important part of the process – make sure your cat is up for the adventure. Be sure they are up to date on all of their vaccinations and heartworm prevention treatment. Microchipping your feline friend is another important step to finding each other in the event you are separated in the outdoors. Before starting any new cat wellness program, consult your veterinarian, especially if your kitty has a pre-existing medical condition and/or is on a special diet. Once you know Whiskers is in tip-top shape you can train!
Teaching them to walk outside on a leash or with a harness before they even hit the trail is important. You can begin in your own backyard! Let them get used to hanging out around the house with the harness on as they explore in their safe place with boundaries before you begin walking together in the great outdoors. They can sniff the harness and lick it to their heart’s desire. Teach them that wearing the harness means an adventure is just around the corner! Also, expect that they might need a break from all of that walking. If they do, it never hurts to carry them a bit as you walk. You’ll both enjoy the extra snuggles along the way!
It’s imperative that your furry friend knows to come to you when you call because it’s a jungle out there! From coyotes to fleas, there are often things pet parents need to look out for along the way. Don’t let that deter you from the adventure, train your kitty to come when they hear the sound of your voice and everything will be fine!
Take enough water and nutrition for you and your furry friend. Don’t forget the map or GPS to make sure you know where you’re going. Other important hiking essentials are flashlights, pocket knives or multipurpose tools. Bring a picture of your cat in case you get separated. And don’t forget the poop bags and/or litterbox! Leave no trace applies to cats too.
We’re excited to hear about how you’re ditching the couch and enjoying the great outdoors. Share pictures and stories from your journey with us on us on the Poof App. Don’t forget to bring along your Poof Pet Activity Tracker so you can monitor all the exercise your cat’s enjoying!
What an exciting adventure is awaiting you and your furry friend?! Don’t have a feline friend yet? June is National Adopt-A-Cat month! Your best friend is just out there waiting on you! Visit your local shelter today and take that hike!
Sources and more info on cat hiking tips:
Adventure Cats ‘ 2nd Article