3 Easy Steps to Teach Your Cat to wear a Harness

Casper, our ragdoll kitten is an indoor cat. But even an indoor cat can have safe outdoor adventures. We decided to take him out on outdoor walks now and then.
Now before you go out with your cat on a leash, it is wise to teach your cat to wear a cat harness and to walk on a leash indoors.

In less than a week of indoor training, I succeeded to get Casper used to wearing a harness and to walk on a leash. It took some effort but it wasn’t that hard really.

Teaching your cat to wear a harness is the first step to you outside-Casper-indoor-ragdoll-cat-goes-outdoor-adventure-walk

Let me show you the three steps I took to make Casper wear the cat harness and to have him walk on a leash.

STEP 1 – BUYING A GOOD HARNESS

I have always been a strong proponent of using a harness instead of a collar.
First of all, I do think a harness is superior to a collar because it is more difficult for a cat to free herself from. Therefor I believe a collar is unsafe.
A collar can also be very harmful for the cat’s neck when he gets into unexpected situations or when it is pulled to hard.

I have always been a strong proponent of using a harness instead of a collar.
First of all, I do think a harness is superior to a collar because it is more difficult for a cat to free herself from. Therefor I believe a collar is unsafe.
A collar can also be very harmful for the cat’s neck when he gets into unexpected situations or when it is pulled to hard.

I bought a H-type of harness, which is basically a combination of two collars, the first goes around the cat’s neck and the second goes around the cat’s belly. Both collars are connected by a strip on the back of the cat. The leash is attached on a metal ring on the back of the cat, where the belly’s collar and the strip come together. This way you never pull strongly on the neck collar and the cat’s neck is much more safer.

These H-type of harnesses are very popular and inexpensive nowadays. So you can buy them in most pet stores or online.

STEP 2 – GETTING USED TO WEARING A HARNESS

Before stepping outside, the very first next thing I did, was teaching Casper to get used to wearing the harness indoors. The whole idea is that I wanted to gradually de-sensitize Casper to the touch and feel of the harness.

To start I’ve put the harness on right before mealtime. This way the food distracted him from the new sensation and it kept him from focusing on removing the collar. You can also try to distract your cat with a treat or a toy.

before going Enjoy your adventure in the great outdoors 🌿🌱🍀🍃 with your cat walking on a leash needs to getting-cat-used-wearing-harness

From that moment on, I tried to do several short sessions a day. And during every session,  you put on the harness and make a positive connection to food, play or whatever your kitten loves. Make sure you don’t overfeed, limit treat-giving to the training sessions.

STEP 3 – INDOOR TRAINING SESSIONS

As your cat learns to tolerate the harness and leash for longer periods, give her a constant stream of verbal praise, head pats and food treats while she’s wearing it.

When she’s obviously done with a training session, meaning she’s dropped to the ground, her tail is switching, ears flattened – whatever signs she normally gives that she’s no longer enjoying herself – remove the harness immediately. You want to end the session with kitty feeling confident and in control.

Here you can see a short video of Casper while we did one of the training sessions.

Hope you like the video (give us a thumbs up), and if you want more of Casper’s adventures, please make comments below and don’t forget to SUBSCRIBE to stay up-to-date.

Lets get you aboard.

Follow my workflow, my methods and my tips and tricks for getting great cat photos and make Casper famous.

Receive more entertaining news, cat photos and videos of Casper.

Join our community now.

MY MOST READ BLOGPOSTS
Here are three of my most popular pages or blogposts, I am sure you may find them interesting too:

Or another great place to get you started is on our START HERE page.

Leave us your thoughts