Cat on a leash

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I read an article in the newspaper recently about people who train their cats to walk on leashes. I'm assuming that the pet owners in question were big city dwellers (likely Manhattan, since I was reading the New York Times). My first thought was "Why the hell does THIS qualify as news?" My second was "Why the hell would you want to put a cat on a leash?"

Honestly, I already knew the answer to that question. Shortly after I moved to New York, I adopted a cat from the ASPCA. She was a cute little ball of energy, and shortly after moving her into my teeny-tiny studio apartment in Brooklyn I purchased a cat leash. Clearly she needed to get some air - stretch her legs, not be limited to the confines of my roughly-400-square-feet-including-the-bathroom-and-mini-kitchen apartment. I remember the day I bought the leash. I was SO excited to introduce Bailey to the world outside of my apartment! I would take her to Prospect Park, walk her up the block, maybe even introduce her to a few kitty friends and schedule kitty play dates (clearly all of this was before I had children). In my mind, Bailey would be just as excited about the leash and its ENDLESS possibilities as I was.

So, I rushed home from the pet store and put the leash on Bailey. As soon as I fastened the final buckle, she promptly rolled over onto her side with all four legs sticking straight out into the air. And she stayed there - motionless, soundless - until I took the damned thing off. I tried the leash a few more times - each with the same outcome. Clearly, Bailey would not be tamed (and she was NOT amused).

As I face another day of more yelling than I would like, I wonder what would happen if I just let my kids BE for a day? Allowed them to scream, yell, run around like tiny lunatics doing whatever the hell they wanted. Are my efforts to calm them, quiet them, wrangle them into semi-human manners much like my attempt to walk my cat on a leash? Am I making them CRAZIER by trying to treat them like tiny adults?

Anonymous said...

My baby boy was leashed trained. All he had to do was hear the bell on the collar and KNOW he was heading out to hang out on the porch

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