Some cats are skittish and have a tendency to startle easily but once you get them outside, they become an entirely different animal. The great outdoors opens up a world of possibilities that appeals to your cat’s curiosity and going for a walk is great exercise! Before you take your cat outside, however, you need to take certain precautions to ensure his safety.
If you’ve been thinking about exploring the great outdoors with your feline friend, you’ll want to invest in a high-quality cat harness. Not only does a cat harness ensure that he doesn’t slip off the leash, but it allows you some control over his movement as well – this is important for safety.
There are many cat harnesses on the market, so check out our top 10 picks to see which ones are the best options. You’ll also learn some tips for shopping for a cat harness and fitting your cat properly.
#1 Kitty Holster Cat Harness
If security is your primary concern, consider the Kitty Holster Cat Harness. This harness features a secure vest-style design that comes in over half a dozen different colors and materials. This vest harness wraps securely around your cat’s body and features secure hook and loop closures as well as a heavy-duty D-ring leash attachment on the back.
The Kitty Holster Cat Harness is a little more expensive than other options, but it is hard to beat this harness when it comes to preventing escape. It is made from soft, non-abrasive materials that are also strong and secure. Simply put, this harness is one of the easiest to use and it offers great security.
Pros: Soft but strong materials, simple vest design, secure hook and loop closures, heavy-duty D-ring leash attachment, reduces risk for escape, no pressure around the neck
Cons: Only available in one size, some very small cats are able to slip out, limited adjustability
#2 Puppia Authentic RiteFit Harness
Though it may cost a little more than other harnesses like it, the Puppia Authentic RiteFit Harness offers excellent quality and adjustability. This harness comes in four sizes so you can choose the one that best fits your cat and then you can adjust the neck and body straps for security. This harness also features a padded chest strap for comfort, all made from breathable mesh materials.
The Puppia Authentic RiteFit Harness is designed for dogs but it also works well for cats as long as you start with the right size and adjust it well. The buckle design is perfect for cats who don’t like slipping a harness over their head and it will keep your cat comfortable in all weather.
Pros: Made from breathable mesh materials, highly adjustable for snug fit, comes in four sizes and several color options, quick-release buckle for easy on/off, comfortable for all weather
Cons: Somewhat bulky around the neck, might not be long enough for some cats, very small cats may be able to slip out of the neck strap
#3 PetSafe Come with Me Kitty Harness and Bungee Leash
To get the best bang for your buck, consider the PetSafe Come with Me Kitty Harness and Bungee Leash. This combo includes an H-style harness and a bungee leash so you are ready to take your cat outside as soon as you get it adjusted. The harness comes in three sizes with six different color options to choose from, all made from high-quality, durable materials.
The PetSafe Come with Me Kitty Harness is adjustable to ensure a snug and secure fit with two points of adjustment. The stretchy bungee leash has a little give to protect your cat against pulling, and the two match each other in color to make the perfect combo.
Pros: Matching H-style harness and bungee leash, harness is adjustable at 2 points, bungee leash prevents strain on neck, three sizes and many colors, quick-release buckles for easy on/off
Cons: May not prevent escape as well as vest harnesses, leash may be too short for some
#4 Voyager All Weather Step-In Mesh Harness
For a harness that offers comfort and security, consider the Voyager All Weather Step-In Mesh Harness. This harness features a step-in design that is easy to get your cat into and out of, though it does offer less adjustability than other harnesses. It is a good thing, then, that it comes in five different sizes – you can choose the one most likely to fit your cat.
The Voyager All Weather Step-In Mesh Harness comes in a wide range of colors and it is made from breathable mesh fabric to keep your cat cool and comfortable. This vest is designed for all types of weather and it is highly affordable. Plus, it features high-quality hardware including a heavy-duty D-ring and strong Velcro closure.
Pros: Breathable mesh fabric for comfort, strong Velcro closure, heavy-duty D-ring, step-in design for easy on/off, highly affordable price, five sizes and many color options
Cons: Sizing can be somewhat tricky, vest-style design offers limited adjustability
#5 RC Pet Products ½ Kitty Cat Harness
If you just want a simple cat harness made from durable materials, the RC Pet Products ½ Kitty Cat Harness is the one for you. This H-style harness is simple in design but it gets the job done without a lot of added weight or material. This harness comes in three sizes – small, large, and chunky – so there is a size for every cat and it comes in a wide variety of colors and patterns.
The RC Pet Products ½ Kitty Cat Harness is made from soft ½-inch webbing that is lightweight for comfort but strong enough for safety. The neck and body straps adjust easily and then you can use the quick-release buckles to get your cat in and out quickly. There is a heavy-duty D-ring leash attachment and matching leashes are available.
Pros: Made from soft webbing, lightweight but durable, adjustable neck and body straps, heavy-duty D-ring attachment, quick-release buckles for easy in/out, three sizes and many colors/patterns
Cons: Back strap is not adjustable, may slide around the cat’s body if not adjusted properly
#6 Expawlorer Escape Proof Cat Harness
When you take your cat outside for a walk, escape is your biggest fear. Even if your cat seems perfectly comfortable on the leash, if he manages to escape he could get spooked and run away. A harness like the Expawlorer Escape Proof Cat Harness is the best way to keep your cat safe and secure. It is made from lightweight, breathable mesh materials for comfort and it is adjustable for a snug fit.
The Expawlorer Escape Proof Cat Harness comes in two sizes and two colors, plus it is very easy to get on and off. There is a buckle on the back that allows you to adjust the harness and, from then on, your cat can simply step into and out of the harness. This harness is soft and comfortable because it reduces strain on your cat’s neck and it won’t make him too hot in warm weather.
Pros: Breathable mesh materials, adjustable for snug fit, comes in two sizes and two colors, buckles for easy on/off, D-ring leash attachment, reduces strain on the cat’s neck, low risk of escape
Cons: May not be big enough for very large or heavy-bodied cats, buckles may be hard to unclasp
#7 PACCOMFET Soft Mesh Cat Harness
For a simple, no-nonsense cat harness that is affordably priced, consider the PACCOMFET Soft Mesh Cat Harness. This harness is made from padded mesh materials for comfort and breathability but it still has an adjustable body strap. The strap is made from durable nylon with a quick-release buckle so you can easily get your cat into and out of the harness after it’s been adjusted.
The PACCOMFET Soft Mesh Cat Harness is priced under $10 and comes in seven different colors and three size options. This harness comes with a D-ring leash attachment at the back and the vest is padded so your cat stays comfortable whether he’s walking or running. Plus, because it is a solid color, it is easy to match with your choice of cat leash.
Pros: Padded mesh for comfort and breathability, durable nylon body strap, adjustable for snug fit, quick-release buckle for easy on/off, D-ring leash attachment, 7 colors and 2 sizes
Cons: Not as durable as other options, no breakaway clasp for safety, neck strap may be too wide for some cats
#8 Dexil Luxury Padded Cat Harness
If you prefer to buy a harness that is specifically designed for cats but you don’t want to spend a lot, the Dexil Luxury Padded Cat Harness is a great option. This harness features a wide chest strap and a neck strap that sits comfortably above the cat’s shoulders. The strap that goes around the body is made from durable nylon and it is adjustable with an easy on/off buckle.
The Dexil Luxury Padded Cat Harness comes in five different colors and two sizes (small/medium and large/xlarge). It has just enough padding to be comfortable for your cat without adding extra weight or restricting his movements. This harness is water-resistant for outdoor use and it has an extra D-ring in the front for a no-pull option. You’ll also love that it is affordably priced under $15.
Pros: Made from durable nylon materials, priced under $15, five colors and two sizes, wide chest and neck strap, adjustable body strap with quick-release buckle, light padding for comfort, extra D-ring
Cons: Small size may not fit large or wide-bodied cats, size runs a little small, neck hole may be too big for some cats
#9 EcoBark The Original Padded Vest Harness
Though it is technically made for dogs, the EcoBark The Original Padded Vest Harness is a great option for cats. What makes this harness unique is that it features a wide padded chest band for added comfort. You’ll also love that it comes in many different colors and six size options, though you’ll only need to think about the smaller sizes. This harness is also affordably priced under $20 for all sizes.
The EcoBark The Original Padded Vest Harness is almost a cross between a vest harness and an H-style harness. The neck loop is much wider than a traditional H-harness, though the adjustable chest strap is a simple nylon loop. This combination of features ensures added comfort and security for your cat while still allowing for adjustability. You’ll also be glad to know that the stitching is reinforced for security and there are non-breakaway emergency release clasps in case your cat gets stuck on something.
Pros: Made from eco-friendly materials, wide range of sizes and colors, padded for comfort, reinforced stitching for security, adjustable straps, non-breakaway emergency release clasps
Cons: Originally designed for dogs, neck strap may be too wide for some cats
#10 PUPTECK Adjustable Cat Harness
If you aren’t sure whether your cat will like going outside or you simply don’t want to make a big financial commitment, the PUPTECK Adjustable Cat Harness is an affordable option that still offers decent quality. Priced at $10, this harness comes in a wide range of color options and it is an H-style harness which means that it is very adjustable. It works for cats 12 pounds and under and is adjustable from 7 to 10 inches around the neck and 10 to 17 inches around the body.
The PUPTECK Adjustable Cat Harness may not be the highest quality harness on the market, but it is still made from durable nylon materials and it is actually thicker than some harnesses on the market. This harness is comfortable for most cats and it features buckles that allow you to get your cat quickly in and out of the harness once you’ve adjusted it.
Pros: Affordably priced at $10, made from durable nylon materials, H-style harness, buckles for easy on/off after adjusting, thicker than some harnesses, D-ring leash attachment
Cons: Not ideal for large or heavy cats, fur can get stuck in the buckle, only one size
Taking your cat outside for the first time can be exciting, but don’t let your excitement prevent you from taking the necessary steps to keep your cat safe.
The outdoors is a wide and wonderful place, but there are many potential dangers for your cat. If your cat gets scared and runs away, he could accidentally run out into the road or hide somewhere you can’t get him. Putting him in a harness and keeping him on a leash is the best way to keep him safe.
There are several different types of cat harness, each with their own benefits. Keep reading to learn more about choosing a cat harness and other safety tips for taking your cat outside.
Tips for Selecting a Cat Harness
Before you go to the pet store and start shopping for a cat harness, you need to be prepared for the different options you’ll come across. There are several different types of cat harness and you should be familiar with them all, so you can choose the best option for your cat.
So, what are the different types of cat harness? Here is a quick overview:
H-Style Harness – This type of harness is usually made from nylon and comes in different widths and thicknesses. An H-style harness typically consists of two loops connected by a strap – one loop goes around the cat’s neck and the other around its body. You can adjust the loops and attach your leash to the harness once it’s properly fitted.
Vest-Style Harness – This type of harness is just what it sounds like – a vest that your cat wears with a D-ring leash attachment. Vest-style harnesses are more secure because they wrap all the way around your cat’s body, reducing the risk that he might wiggle out and escape. They are not as adjustable as other harnesses, however, and may be too warm to wear in hot weather.
Soft Harness – A soft harness is almost a combination of an H-style harness and a vest harness. They still usually have two loops that go around the neck and body but there may also be a chest strap for added support and security. These harnesses offer excellent comfort and reduce the risk for escape.
Now that you know what to expect when it comes to cat harnesses, you may be wondering how to choose the right one. Here are some simple tips for choosing a cat harness:
Know what size you need – fit is extremely important for your cat’s safety so have your cat’s measurements in hand when you start shopping.
Think about security – small cats and kittens are the hardest to keep in a harness, so you may want to choose one of the more secure options like a soft harness or vest harness.
Make sure the harness is adjustable – it’s important to choose the right size to start but you also want to be able to adjust the harness to make sure it fits snugly.
Consider the hardware – your cat’s safety depends on the harness doing its job, so look for one that has heavy-duty hardware including the buckles and D-ring.
Think about the price – you probably already have a budget in mind but don’t be tempted to buy a lower quality harness just because it is cheaper. Buy a better harness that will last.
With this information in mind, you’re ready to head to the pet store! Once you’ve selected your harness you’re just about ready to take your cat outside – keep reading for some important safety tips to learn before you forge ahead.
How to Keep Your Cat Safe Outside
You love your cat and you want what is best for him, don’t you? Of course you do! In addition to feeding him a high-quality diet and taking him to the vet, you also need to keep him safe – no matter where you happen to be. This includes the outdoors!
Here are some simple tips for keeping your cat safe when he’s wearing a harness, especially when the two of you are outside:
Before you even take your cat outside, you’ll need to spend some time getting him used to the harness – put it on for a minute or so at first and work your way up.
Make sure your cat forms a positive association with the harness – try feeding him treats while he’s wearing it and walk him around the house before you take him outside.
Once your cat is used to wearing the harness, start practicing with the leash – he’ll need to get used to the weight of it behind him.
Check the weather and your surroundings before you go out – make sure that it is safe for your cat before you take him outside.
Don’t go too far from home – when you’re outside walking your cat, don’t travel too far away. You can let your cat wander for as long as you like but be close to home when he’s ready to go.
Start off slowly and work your way up to longer walks so your cat doesn’t become overwhelmed or overtired – you may need to coax him along at first but eventually he’ll get the hang of it.
Keep a close eye on your cat while you’re outside – if he starts to show signs of stress or panic, it’s time to go back inside and take a break.
Never let go of your cat’s leash or leave him unattended – even if it’s just for a minute or two, you shouldn’t run the risk of leaving your cat alone outside.
Make sure your cat doesn’t eat or lick anything while you’re out on your walk – you should also make sure your cat doesn’t try to climb any trees or chase anything.
Now that you know about the different types of cat harnesses and the benefits they offer, you’re ready to choose one for your cat! If you still need help making the right selection, take the information you’ve learned here to heart and consider one of our top picks for the 10 best cat harnesses above.