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Collars v harness

My time with Silk wanting to go outside:
Silk:. Dad, I want to go outside!
Me: Ok, but no running away without being on your leash.
Silk: I promise. (Grin)
Me: **opens door to put Silk out**
Silk: **yelling** I'm free! I'm free!
Me: **Running after cat**

Collars V Harnesses

Ok, so maybe you just got a cat for the first time, or you're a seasoned professional.  And you want your cat to be able to enjoy the outdoors, but you don't want them getting hurt or killed.

So now you’re probably wondering if you should keep your kitty in, or let her out. Most vets and cat experts (at least the ones I talk to) say keeping your cat as an indoor cat is better. And in truth it is far more healthier for your cat as she won’t be hurt by other animals or cars going by.  And there is less chance of her getting a disease from another animal.

In my opinion, cats belong outside. Why, before cats became domesticated, they existed outside.  They hunted outside, they breed outside, they existed outside.  But as we began to bring cats inside, we now face the problem of having to put our pets outside, but we of course do not want to see our beloved pet get seriously hurt.

So with that said, should you use a collar on him or get a harness? Well the problem with attaching your leash to the cats collar is that, unlike a dogs neck, a cat can be seriously hurt if attached only to a collar.  A cats throat is a lot softer than a dogs, and can be choked if walked only with their collar, or if left outside alone, could suffocate to death.  So getting a harness is a safer alternative.  You can still have a collar for identification of the animal, but try not to use it to put your cat outside with.

The following are three different types of harnesses:

“H” harness

The first is called the "H" harness. Given its name by the way that it forms the letter H when put together. This harness fits around the neck and body of your cat. The idea is that this harness reduces the pressure on the cats neck.  This harness can also be thought of as beginning harness, as it will get the cat use to having something around it's upper and lower part of it's body.  With any harness, patience is the key to having your kitty become comfortable wearing one.
 "Vest" Harness

The next type of harness is the vest harness. The vest harness offers more coverage than the "H" harness. These harnesses are best for wanting to walk your cat if your cat has a tendency to pull too hard or likes to pretend she is Houdini and escape. They are usually made from an air mesh material. 

Grey cat in vest style harness


And lastly is the:

 “Jacket” Harness

The jacket harness covers more of the cat's body and provides a better fit and fastens at the top of the jacket using Velcro. Jackson Galaxy, the host of the Animal Planet hit TV show “My cat from hell” endorses this kind of harness. One thing to keep in mind is that the jacket harness may look real smart on your kitty, but because it uses Velcro, your cat may not like it. Loud noises like the tearing of Velcro can scare your cat, especially since it is so close to their ears.
Those are the three main harnesses for cats that exist right now. So which one is better? Honestly, it is a personal choice and something you will need to test with your kitty. My advice is to start your kitty with the “H” harness and get them used to that. This is an especially good idea if A) They are a kitten and young enough to get used to wearing the harness or B) If they are an older cat that has never worn a harness before. Then once used to the harness, move them up to the Vest or Jacket harness.

As always, I ask that you leave a comment below.  Thank you.

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