Are Cat Strollers Really That Weird? The Pros and Cons of Pushing Your Feline Around

What is a Cat Stroller?

A cat stroller is a wheeled contraption, similar to a baby stroller, that allows pet owners to take their cats outdoors for walks, hikes, or strolls (Chewy, Cat strollers typically consist of an enclosed compartment mounted on a chassis with wheels, providing cats with safe transportation and outdoor experiences.

Cat strollers come in a variety of styles, but most share common features like mesh windows for ventilation, padded beds or perches for cats to lay on, storage compartments, and adjustable handles and wheels. Some cat strollers include attachments like cup holders, weather shields, storage baskets, and adjustable covers.

The main purpose of a cat stroller is to provide cats with enriching outdoor experiences in a safe, controlled way. Cat strollers allow house cats to explore new sights, sounds, and smells outdoors while protecting them from cars, dogs, wildlife, etc. They give cat owners an easy way to go for walks with their feline companions.

History of Cat Strollers

Cat strollers were first invented in the late 1800s to early 1900s as a way for people to transport their cats outdoors in a safe and comfortable manner. According to the Dog Quality blog, early versions of cat strollers ranged from a simple board with wheels to small wagons[1]. The concept was similar to baby strollers, but modified to contain cats.

Cat strollers remained relatively basic devices for decades, often homemade or improvised from everyday objects. However, as cats became more popular as pets and people sought ways to include them in activities and travel, purpose-built cat strollers began emerging in the late 1900s and early 2000s. Modern cat strollers now come in many styles with enhanced features for comfort, ventilation, and safety.

According to veterinarian experts, the popularity of cat strollers accelerated in the 2010s as more cat owners used them to transport aging or special needs cats. What originated as a novelty has become an important means of enrichment and exercise for indoor cats[2].

Benefits of Using a Cat Stroller

One of the main benefits of using a cat stroller is that it allows cats to be outdoors safely. Cat strollers provide a protective enclosure so cats can experience fresh air and sights while remaining secure inside the stroller. This prevents cats from escaping or having direct contact with other animals, traffic, or other dangers outdoors (source:

Cat strollers also provide much needed exercise and stimulation for indoor cats. Indoor cats often lead sedentary lives, so going for walks in a stroller provides physical activity and mental enrichment. The sights, sounds and smells of the outdoors provide sensory stimulation and entertainment for cats (source:

Additionally, cat strollers offer a convenient way to bring cats along during travel. Instead of leaving cats at home, strollers allow cats to join their owners on trips to outdoor events, while being transported safely (source:

Potential Drawbacks of Cat Strollers

While cat strollers can be a useful tool for some cat owners, they do come with some potential drawbacks to consider before purchasing:

Some cats may not take well to being confined in a stroller. According to, cats that are anxious, high-strung, or easily overstimulated may become more stressed in a stroller environment. The motion and unfamiliar surroundings could cause them to meow, try to escape, or refuse to enter the stroller altogether.

There are also some safety concerns to keep in mind when using a cat stroller. As noted in, strollers can tip over if not used properly on uneven terrain, and cats may be able to escape if harnesses are not secured correctly. Owners need to take care to avoid these issues and keep their cat safe.

Additionally, strollers provide limited exercise for cats since they remain confined. According to, strollers work best for older, less active cats or those that cannot walk far on their own. For energetic cats that need more activity, a stroller may not meet their needs.

Types of Cat Strollers

There are several different types of cat strollers available to suit different needs and situations:

Covered strollers: These cat strollers have an enclosed dome or canopy top to provide shade, warmth, and privacy for your cat. They protect your cat from the elements while still allowing them to view the outside world safely. Covered strollers are a good choice for cats that feel more secure in an enclosed space.

Open strollers: Open cat strollers have an open, uncovered design that allows maximum visibility and interaction with the surroundings. They work well for outgoing, social cats that want to see and be seen. Open strollers may have a sunshade or canopy that can be pulled down when needed.

Multi-pet strollers: These larger strollers have room for two or more pets. They allow multiple cats from the same home to ride together. Multi-pet strollers come in both covered and open designs.

Jogging strollers: Jogging strollers have three wheels for added stability during runs or walks on rougher terrain. They may also have hand brakes for stopping and superior shock absorption. Jogging strollers are ideal for active pet owners.

Specialty strollers: Some specialty cat strollers cater to specific needs. These may include strollers designed for overweight or disabled cats, strollers that attach to bicycles for riding, or strollers made for specific breeds like hairless cats.

When selecting a stroller, consider your cat’s personality, needs, and the environments where you plan to use the stroller. This will help determine the best type of cat stroller for you.

Choosing the Right Cat Stroller

When selecting a cat stroller, there are several factors to consider to ensure you choose the right one for your feline companion:

Cat size – Make sure to check the weight and size capacity of a stroller to confirm it can comfortably accommodate your cat. Measure your cat to get their exact height, length, and weight.

Intended use – If using a stroller primarily for walks, look for larger wheels and a sturdy but lightweight frame. For travel, choose a stroller that folds up compactly.

Cat personality – Shy or anxious cats may prefer an enclosed stroller with darker mesh to feel hidden and secure. Curious and energetic cats will appreciate strollers with front viewing windows.

Budget – Cat strollers range widely in price from $50 to $300+. Determine how much you’re willing to spend based on features and longevity.

Accessories – Some strollers offer handy extras like storage baskets and trays, cup holders, weather covers, and more. Decide what features will best suit your needs.

Reviews – Read buyer reviews to learn about real customer experiences with comfort, quality, ease of use, and durability of specific cat stroller models.

By considering these key factors, you’ll be able to select the ideal cat stroller to provide your cat with enjoyable strolling adventures.

Introducing Your Cat to a Stroller

Introducing your cat to a stroller requires patience and positive reinforcement. Here are some tips for getting your cat comfortable with stroller rides:

  • Start by placing the stroller in your home and letting your cat explore it on their own terms. This allows them to get used to the sight and smell of it.
  • Next, place a treat or toy inside the stroller to encourage your cat to go in voluntarily. Praise and reward them when they do.
  • Once your cat seems comfortable entering the stroller, take very short trips around your home. Keep the stroller door open at first so they don’t feel confined.
  • Give treats during the ride and when you return home to reinforce that stroller rides are a positive experience.
  • Gradually take longer trips, keeping a slow pace. Bring toys to make it more engaging.
  • Introduce the stroller cover for short intervals so your cat gets used to being enclosed.
  • Be patient and willing to take a step back if your cat seems nervous. With time, they will likely adapt to stroller rides.

The key is to go slowly, use positive reinforcement, and closely observe your cat’s reactions at each step. Taking this gradual approach sets you both up for stroller success!

Safety Tips for Using a Cat Stroller

Using a cat stroller allows cat owners to bring their feline friends outdoors for walks and adventures. However, proper precautions should be taken to keep cats safe and comfortable while riding in a stroller. Here are some key safety tips:

Always supervise your cat while they are in the stroller. Do not leave them unattended. Cats can get anxious, overheat, or get injured if left alone (Source).

Use harnesses and restraints properly. Secure your cat in the stroller with an approved cat harness and leash. Make sure it fits properly and connect it to the designated restraint anchor. This prevents escaping and sudden jumping out (Source).

Monitor the temperature. Do not keep cats in strollers in extreme heat or cold. Look for strollers with ventilation, shade tops, and temperature monitors to keep your cat comfortable.

Maintain cleanliness. Clean the stroller between uses to prevent the spread of germs and diseases. Cats can be susceptible to contagions.

Choose appropriate terrain. Use caution when pushing strollers on uneven or rough surfaces that could jostle or tip the stroller over. Stick to flat, obstacle-free paths.

Take it slow. Introduce stroller walks gradually and go at a relaxed pace. Avoid overstimulating or stressing your cat.

Prep for emergencies. Bring backup harnesses, water, food, bags, and other supplies in case of escapes or accidents.

Reactions and Perceptions

Cat strollers tend to elicit a range of reactions from both cat owners and non-owners. Some people find them endearing and enjoy seeing cats out exploring the world. Others find cat strollers unusual or even silly. Much of this depends on cultural norms and personal perspectives.

On Reddit, one user said “As someone who used to live with a cat stroller person: Go for it. Who cares. If the animal enjoys it, no one’s being harmed. Those cat strollers make it possible for elder kitties to keep getting outside time” (source). This underscores the viewpoint that cat strollers can benefit cats by allowing them safe outdoor access.

However, some people may find cat strollers weird or treat them as a joke. There are many cat stroller memes poking fun at the concept. Critics feel that cats should walk on their own or stay home. Still, most cat owners who use strollers report positive experiences and say their cats enjoy outings. Overall, cat strollers are becoming more mainstream but individual perceptions vary.

The Future of Cat Strollers

The pet industry is booming, with spending on pets in the US reaching over $100 billion in 2020 ( This growth is fueling innovation in the cat stroller market, as manufacturers look to cater to pet owners’ desires for convenience, safety, and adventure.

According to market research, the global pet stroller market is projected to grow at a CAGR of over 6% from 2021-2026 ( Key factors driving this growth include an increase in pet ownership, growing disposable incomes, urbanization trends, and owners treating pets more like family.

Manufacturers are innovating with new designs and features. We’ll likely see strollers with increased storage and cargo capacity, allowing owners to carry more pet supplies on adventures. Other additions may include built-in water bowls, treat dispensers, fans and air conditioning for hot days, and weatherproofing features like rain covers. Top-end models may even incorporate GPS tracking, cameras, or self-driving capabilities.

While basic four-wheel strollers will remain popular for their simplicity and maneuverability, we may also see more three-wheel strollers emerge as premium options for smoother rides. Lighter-weight but durable materials like aircraft-grade aluminum will help reduce stroller weight. And convertible strollers with detachable parts will allow for customization based on the adventure.

As cat strollers gain greater social acceptance, they will likely surge in popularity. With innovative new designs catering to owner needs, the future looks bright for cat strolling adventures!

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