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 Post subject: HOW TO HALTER-TRAIN
PostPosted: Sat Sep 23, 2017 1:20 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat

Joined: Tue Sep 19, 2017 11:45 pm
Posts: 102
I'd love to take Bella for walks. Her former owner had done this. He used to take her out in the car with him. He had a halter that came with Bella along with her other stuff, but it was far too small and I bought another. However, she growls and fights me if I try to put it on her. I'm sure this is quite normal; who would want to have a halter put on one if one were a cat? Any suggestions appreciated.


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 Post subject: Re: HOW TO HALTER-TRAIN
PostPosted: Sat Sep 23, 2017 5:43 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat

Joined: Sat May 19, 2012 8:00 am
Posts: 707
Location: Ogden, UT
I've never heard of a cat halter. I use a harness on my cat for walks. Do you have a picture of the halter?

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~ Kyenta


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 Post subject: Re: HOW TO HALTER-TRAIN
PostPosted: Sat Sep 23, 2017 5:46 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat

Joined: Tue Sep 19, 2017 11:45 pm
Posts: 102
Halter is just another word for harness....


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 Post subject: Re: HOW TO HALTER-TRAIN
PostPosted: Sat Sep 23, 2017 8:53 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat

Joined: Sat May 19, 2012 8:00 am
Posts: 707
Location: Ogden, UT
ahhh, I understand now.

I walk Quasar a lot in his walking jacket. This is a pretty secure (but I will not say escape-proof), custom-fit jacket.

I can't really speak to how easy it is to get a cat used to harness. Quasar spent his first 6 hours with me wearing a harness, at 13 weeks old, and has never seemed to object to having it on.
He is 5 years old now and really did not like having his jacket put on up until about a year ago. Once it was on, this was no problem for him, however.
Now, all I have to do is open the Velcro and he comes running to the door, waiting to get dressed.

If Bella has been used to wearing a harness in the past, she probably won't be too difficult to get used to wearing it again.
I would put it on her, despite her protests, and have her wear it inside to get used to it.

Does she object to wearing the harness, once it is in place?

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~ Kyenta


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 Post subject: Re: HOW TO HALTER-TRAIN
PostPosted: Sat Sep 23, 2017 10:30 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat

Joined: Tue Sep 19, 2017 11:45 pm
Posts: 102
Thanks, Kyenta. I can't even get the harness completely on her. She growls ferociously, and I get discouraged. Do you have a website for the kind of jacket you use?

I did find - after posting this question - an Internet site that tells you how to get your cat used to a harness/halter. It can take a long time. Her former owner is in town for the next three months so maybe I'll be able to ask him how he did it. I'd love to take Bella for walks! Thing is, though, we do live in New York City and I'm not really sure it would be good for her to be walking around the street (her former owner used to wash her paws after they got through walking.) Do you live in the suburbs/country? He also taught her to accompany him in the car. She seemed to have no problem sitting in the passenger seat, though I'm also not at all sure that would be wise. She isn't a child and you couldn't strap her in . . . . . ah, so many questions!


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 Post subject: Re: HOW TO HALTER-TRAIN
PostPosted: Sun Sep 24, 2017 12:22 am 
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Asian Leopard Cat

Joined: Sat May 19, 2012 8:00 am
Posts: 707
Location: Ogden, UT
I have purchased jackets from different places.

His most recent ones came from Mynwood Cat jackets.
mynwoodcatjackets.com

This is a UK site but I live in Utah, and the ship to me. They will ask for a couple of measurements then you choose the fabric and they make it to fit.

I would suspect that Bella's former owner had not walked her a lot of recent times if the harness you were given is too small.

Cheers!

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~ Kyenta


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 Post subject: Re: HOW TO HALTER-TRAIN
PostPosted: Sun Sep 24, 2017 12:44 am 
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Asian Leopard Cat

Joined: Tue Sep 19, 2017 11:45 pm
Posts: 102
Yep, you're right about that, Kyenta. Before I invest in that jacket I'll have to ponder it. I've gotten Bella and my little rescue cat, Jamie, the most magnificent cat tree, for instance, and -- OOPS! BELLA IS SHREDDING... WAIT A MINUTE....

PAUSE

Sorry. I'm back. Bella was shredding my baby cousin's wedding invitation and I had to stop her. She has broken a few dishes in her frenzy to test gravity by pushing all manner of things off the kitchen counter. Onto which I have permitted her, to my shame.

Jeez, it would be soooooo great if I could walk her! She has so much pent-up energy. Even if I walked her in the hallways of our apartment building, which go on and on for a square block, it would be better than her being confined here. Although, I have to say, 1700 square feet of space is pretty good . . . .

Anyway. I got a magnificent, tall, multi-level cat tree for my fur babies and neither of them is remotely interested. Go figure. $80 down the drain. I'm gonna have to sell it.

Plus multiple toys with which Bella becomes bored after maybe two or three passes. The one she really likes is that cat dancer thing with the wire and the cardboard thingies on it.

I will look at the cat jackets and then decide...Thanks much!


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 Post subject: Re: HOW TO HALTER-TRAIN
PostPosted: Sun Sep 24, 2017 2:13 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat

Joined: Thu May 23, 2013 2:21 pm
Posts: 8144
First of all, I would NEVER EVER advise someone to have a cat loose in a car. I don't care how well behaved the cat is, a sudden stop, an accident, and something tragic could happen. A cat should always be contained in a carrier. I know there are cat owners who love posting pictures of their cat roaming free in their car. My bengal would go ballistic if I let him roam in the car. He would be under the brake pedal, on the dashboard -- not a fun experience -- and I am always reading about cats who escaped from cars from an accident, or just jumping out the open window.

Now, to the walking part. What type of harness did you get? Figure 8? Figure H? Many people here like the walking jackets, but they do cover up more of that cat and need to be custom fit to the cat.

Bella is acting like a normal cat. They do not really enjoy having something new around them. The main thing is that Bella be completely comfortable in her surroundings before you try something like this. It seems she is. Know a few things. You can keep trying to get the harness on her -- or you can eventually give up.

The harness should be easy to get on her -- ask someone to help hold her. Once you get it fastened, she will either roll over and act paralyzed or she will fight to get the jacket off. All you can do is tempt her with treats. Once a cat realizes it can walk wearing the jacket, they are usually fine. Fighting the jacket is a little harder. Try the treat thing, but if she is going ballistic, take the harness off her. Wait another day and try again. Since she seems to be easily traumatized, this may not be the best idea.

Know, too, that if you are stressed out while trying to get the harness around her, she is going to be stressed out. So both cat and owner need to be calm and maybe make it more of a game.

Most of all. PATIENCE! Now, if and when you go out on walks, be prepared for the unexpected. In the beginning, Bella won't go far. She is a female and not looking for other cats to fight with like mine does. I carry a towel with me so I can ward off dogs and cats (didn't work so well for me September 1 when Raiden got into a cat fight while on the leash. But, it also serves as a place for us to sit if Raiden just wants to be in the grass.

New York City is not really THE place to walk a cat. Lots of people, lots of cars and commotion. No grassy space. I might recommend a pet stroller. That way, you and Bella can walk to a park. If she is trained with a harness, you can then allow her to get out of the stroller while you're sitting on a park bench and she can sniff around.

I think it's wonderful you are wanting to do this for her, but remember it has to be on HER terms, not yours. Having patience helps a GREAT deal. You will get there, I just know it.


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 Post subject: Re: HOW TO HALTER-TRAIN
PostPosted: Sun Sep 24, 2017 4:25 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat

Joined: Tue Sep 19, 2017 11:45 pm
Posts: 102
OK, Sherry. Her former owner is in town for a few months and wanting to come visit her, so I'll ask him. He stopped taking her out - he lived in Elizabeth, NJ - because he'd been cleaning her paws after every walk and finally decided it wasn't worth walking her if she was going to catch something awful on the streets. I agree. Your idea of a pet stroller sounds very good. I'll look into it. But then I'd need advice about how/where, etc. Thanks again for your original letter, which alerted me to a bad state of mind I'd been in, and has helped me enormously in continued bonding with Bella. She IS affectionate in fact. Always by my side in the kitchen, licks my face when I kiss her, etc. Once I master how to upload photos I'll send them along. Best, EC (My real name is Ellen Cantarow. See my articles on the Internet if you're curious!)


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 Post subject: Re: HOW TO HALTER-TRAIN
PostPosted: Mon Sep 25, 2017 4:20 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat

Joined: Thu May 23, 2013 2:21 pm
Posts: 8144
Ellen, I will check out your articles. Since you live in bustling NYC, I honestly think the pet stroller is the best way to give Bella fresh air. There must a park near you. I would never take her out of the stroller without having a harness and leash attached. But, what a nice stroll for the two of you. A neighbor here has two tiny dogs that he walks in a stroller. Super cute. It is very different walking a cat in a subdivision. I live on a dead-end street and the street that goes off my street also dead ends, so it's a nice walk for us without having to get on a busy road.


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 Post subject: Re: HOW TO HALTER-TRAIN
PostPosted: Mon Sep 25, 2017 6:28 pm 
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Bengal Kitten
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Joined: Fri May 26, 2017 4:50 pm
Posts: 22
My SBT loves her jacket. She knows we are going out. She will actually bring it to me so I get the message. She will wear the harness if she has to but doesn't really care for it since it takes longer to put on and she's not as comfortable in it. For her it's the jacket.

My F1 loves his harness. He doesn't like the jacket at all and does the 'I can't move' thing. They are so different.

To get them used to the harness and jacket I had a toy ready to distract them as soon as it was on. It didn't take too long before they realized they had fun every time I put it on them.

I vote with Sherry though. I think the stroller is a great idea and I would also put the harness or jacket on too. Good luck!!!


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