Do you want to be able to walk your cat and take them anywhere without worrying that they might run away? Many cat owners feel that they are neglecting their cats because they have no way of taking them out of the house safely.
If you want to take your cat for a walk without a harness and unnecessary stress, a cat backpack might be the solution.
This accessory will keep your cat safe so they can admire the surroundings and not get stressed out. A cat backpack is a modern, reliable, and convenient accessory for both you and your cat, and you can travel over short or long distances knowing that your cat is safe. But are cat backpacks cruel? If used properly, cat backpacks are not considered cruel.
Are Cat Backpacks Cruel?
Cat backpacks are not considered cruel if you use them properly. Once cats get used to this accessory, they might even like it. Of course, not all cats will love being taken for a walk, and that’s okay! Do not force your cat if they do not want to enter/stay in the backpack because you will only make them avoid the carrier even more. Each cat is different, and as an owner, you must know and respect their limits and comfort zones.
It might be considered cruel if your cat hates the backpack and you force them inside of it, anyway. This will stress and scare your cat. In the long run, stressed cats can become physically and emotionally ill and may develop various diseases and behavior disorders1.
Are Cat Backpacks Safe?
A cat backpack is considered safe as long as it’s used properly and meets several requirements, including:
Don’t use the cat backpack over long distances or for too many hours. You will need to take a break once in a while to let your cat move and stretch their muscles, drink water, and use the litter box.
Also, if you have back problems, don’t choose a heavy backpack because its weight will add to your cat’s weight.
How to Backpack Train Your Cat
If you want to backpack train your cat, positive reinforcement and patience are essential2. Do not force your cat inside, and give them time to get used to the backpack.
Here are the steps that you need to follow in order for your cat to get used to this accessory:
How Long Can a Cat Be in a Cat Backpack?
In general, a cat should not stay in the backpack for more than 4 hours without a break, but this time varies according to their personality, age, and health condition.
There are circumstances (such as international flights) in which cats have to stay inside their carriers for up to 10 hours. But if you have control over the situation, it is recommended not to leave your cat inside the backpack for more than 4 hours. Even though cats can hold their urine for up to 48 hours, they should still stretch their muscles and consume water and food.
To make sure your cat is comfortable, check on them regularly. If they are relaxed or sleeping, take a break later. If your cat becomes restless, it’s time for a break.
It is okay if your cat doesn’t do everything in one break (exercise, consume water and food, and use the litter box). What they didn’t do in one break, they might during the next one.
It’s most important for your cat to stay hydrated. So, ensure that your cat drinks water regularly, especially in summer when it’s hot.
Cat Backpack Pros and Cons
Compared to conventional hard plastic carriers, cat backpacks have a few advantages. But as with any accessory, there are also disadvantages.
If you want to start taking your cat for a walk, a cat backpack can be a good idea. It is a safe mode of transportation, as it allows your cat to admire their surroundings without feeling stressed. Cat backpacks are not considered cruel as long as they meet certain requirements and are used properly. A cat must be taken out of the backpack once every 4 hours at most to move, eat and drink, and use the litter box.
Featured Image Credit: Nils Jacobi, Shutterstock