Updated: Oct 5, 2022
Adventuring with a cat can at times be exhilarating! They run, they jump, they explore! But with all that adventuring, your feline friend can quickly become tired. And once your feline friend has decided to call it quits, there’s no making them walk 😹
Table of Contents:
What We Use
Aries and I went through a few different backpacks before the one we currently use (PetAmi Backpack) and you can read about the pros and cons of these different bags in our Product Review blog. The reason we selected and enjoy our PetAmi backpack is listed there (our biggest motivation was being able to carry more water on our hikes, as we live in the Sonoran desert!) but in this blog, we’re going to talk a bit more about how we trained to use the bag and how we use it on our hikes.
Training to use the cat backpack was similar to how we trained to use Harness and Leash.
How We Trained:
Phase 1 -
I introduced Aries to the backpack by letting him smell it and inspect it. I left it out in a room where he could easily access it whenever he wanted.
After he started was comfortable enough to jump into it (he even took a few naps in it!) I started to practice placing him in the bag intentionally.
We did this every couple of days for a week or so, reinforcing success with treats!
Phase 2 -
After completing Phase 1, I began to work on getting him to jump in willingly. (This was a bit tricky, but he jumped out willingly!) I’d hold his favorite churu treat in the backpack until he was fully in the bag, then I’d zip it up. Eventually, he was crawling in himself if I simply waved the treat over the bag!
I began to carry him in the bag outside my house, just walking around outside. (your feline friend should be comfortable outside from previous harness training)
Aries and I did Phase 2 once every few days for another week or so.
Phase 3 -
Once Aries was comfortable exploring around outside our home in his cat pack, we traveled to a nearby park and let him walk around for a while until he got tuckered out and then placed him in the backpack. (This was our easiest step when Aries was tired, he didn’t mind hanging out in the backpack)
Phase 3 still occurs! Aries loves riding around in areas he knows really well!
It's important that you don't ONLY use the carrier or cat-pack to go to the vet. This will condition your feline friend to expect a vet visit each time they get in the carrier! Vary location and destination.
Aries loves his backpack and we’ve even used it for when we go bike riding, a topic which we will discuss in the near future!
happy adventuring furrfriends!