I know you are reading this, Mr. Felix Catus. You are sitting on top of your human’s keyboard again. So let me break the news to you. Humans no longer worship you, cat! Do not expect them to make murals of you anymore. Instead of heating your tooshie, get your human so that we can discuss the best adventure cat gear!
I know what you are thinking there, human. Yup, your cat (and his extended fluffy family) are notably known for their homebody tendencies and mind-boggling laziness. But if you browse on Instagram and Pinterest, you will be astonished to find intrepid felines kayaking along the river and hiking up trails with a cat backpack among many others.
You see, “adventure cats” have become a thing nowadays. However, it is not just some fad. According to Dr. Annie King, letting your indoor cat experience the outdoors can help ease its boredom and stress. She makes Emmylou tag along whenever she goes hiking and kayaking in the Southern Appalachians.
If you are an adventurer yourself and you see your cat as your best chum, it makes sense that you would want to bring your feline companion with you, too. But is Felix cut out to be an adventure cat? You will never know unless you try!
Gather the Right Outdoor Adventure Cat Gear
I know you are excited and you want to hit the trail ASAP. But first, you need to gather the right equipment.
You can take cats on long hikes, but cats are not hardcore hikers, unlike dogs. After all, our feline companions have smaller paws, and endurance is not their strongest attribute. So, you may want to pick up your cat occasionally and give him a lift via acat backpack. Besides, cats prefer being high up and enjoy a bird’s eye view.
Adding to that, a cat backpack can double as a carrier for car travel if it comes with seat belt buckle attachments. There are numerous advantages to a cat backpack. Check out this article by Dr. Pippa Elliot to learn more.
Portable Litter Box & Poop Bags
Nothing could be worse than having your cat poop inside your car while you are cruising through a long stretch of highway. Thus, bring along a portable litter box and a few bags of cat litter. A disposable litter box would be ideal for short travels, while a fabric-based litter box is fit for trips that would extend for a few days.
Harness and Leash
Get a high-quality harness and a robust leash. Cats are agile and swift! These small, whiskered creatures can sprint like Usain Bolt and climb trees as fast as a squirrel. But they can also fall victim to birds of prey, aggressive dogs, or giant reptiles. Therefore, you want to keep your feline companion secure with a harness and leash.
Since brick and mortar pet stores usually have limited varieties, you may want to buy online instead. Do your homework to find the “purrfect” harness and leash for your kitty. A mesh harness is preferable for warmer months because it is breathable and lightweight. A heavy-duty harness made of Oxford or Nylon would be superior for rough adventures, especially during chilly weather.
Life Jacket/Vest for Cats
Cats have a long history of being seafarers. Kitties have provided companionship to sailors and offered pest control services. So, do not be afraid to take your whiskered fellow with you during water adventures. And contrary to popular belief, our feline companions are adept swimmers! Cats loathe getting soaked. Still, you do not want to leave your pet’s safety to chance. As with a harness, your cat’s life vest should also fit well. A life jacket that is either too tight or too loose may hinder your pet’s ability to swim.
Trust us; your cat will need a raincoat. A raincoat not only keeps your furry pal dry and toasty when it drizzles, but it also protects your cat’s coat from harmful bacteria.
Hydration & Sustenance
You need to pack adequate food and water for your feline adventurer. Bring plenty of bottled water, especially if the climate is hot. Heat exhaustion can occur suddenly, turning into a deadly heatstroke. It is also a great idea to bring your cat’s favorite munchies. Treats are handy for promoting positive behavior, especially when you are still training your quasi-adventure kitty.
First Aid Kit
A first-aid kit is crucial for your outdoor activities, especially if you are planning to go to a remote place where you cannot contact a vet. With a first-aid kit, you can provide immediate medical intervention should the need arise; and to prevent further complications. The first-aid kit for cats should include the following:
- Blood clotting powders
- Wound disinfectant
- Gauze pads
- Bandage pads
- 3-inch cotton padding rolls
- Gauze rolls
- Sharp shears and blunt-tip bandage scissors
- Activated charcoal
- Antibiotic ointment
- Eye flush and artificial tears
- Battery-operated beard trimmer
- Digital thermometer
- Emergency warming blankets
- Tick remover
Pack Your Things, Start Training, and Go
If your cat starts attacking your legs or ripping up furniture, allow your kitty to vent his boredom and stress by exploring the vast world. Outdoor adventures can provide an outlet for energetic tabbies. Likewise, it helps keep your cat mentally and physically stimulated.
Now that you know what adventure cat gear you need for your kitty, help him adjust to his harness in a few weeks’ worth of training. Cats thrive on routine; thus, do not take off your cat’s harness until he considers it as a part of his daily life. Do not rush and push your cat away from its comfort zone too fast. Do something every day, such as walking across the yard. When your cat finally gets comfortable wearing a harness, you can take him to his first adventure.
On a side note, do not forget to bring a cat backpack among others. You should give your kitty the option to get inside its carrier. After all, he can enjoy the new battery of smells and sights from there. Letting your kitty perch atop your shoulders will only expose him to potential threats.