Choice and training all cats are natural predators and need to be active. However, domesticated pets can have different temperaments depending on the breed and character. Passive individuals prefer to spend most of their time alone. Active cats are often in motion, and for them, there is a special running cat wheel. This article will discuss the subtleties of choosing and accustoming a pet in more detail.
Who needs a cat wheel?
The running wheel is a kind of simulator primarily needed by active domestic cats. The space in the apartments is quite limited, and the animals do not have the opportunity to throw out all their energy. If you interfere with the games of an active pet, then over time, he can become lazy and spend most of his time in a dream or at a bowl of food. Inactive individuals increase the risk of gaining excess weight, which, in turn, can lead to serious health problems. The running cat wheel will be a great alternative to free-range outdoors for born predators. Among all cats, representatives of the following breeds are distinguished by activity:
- Egyptian Mau;
However, this does not mean that only these animals will like the simulator. Any cat can be active, regardless of its affiliation to any breed.
Advantages and disadvantages of cat wheel
- The cat wheel allows you to organize leisure time for your pet. Individuals who like to run around the apartment in the mornings and nights will no longer bother tired owners and wake them up.
- The health benefits of cats are undeniable. Regular jogging allows lazy individuals to maintain a normal weight and not get fat. Active pets will be able to throw out their energy at any time. Also, training allows you to maintain muscle tone.
- Classes on the running cat wheel allow you to maintain a normal weight, train muscles, and positively affect the cardiovascular system and lungs.
- For many wheels models, the inner part is sheathed with carpet and can serve as a pet scratching post.
As for the shortcomings, they are not so significant for running wheels. Let’s highlight the main disadvantages.
- The finished models are quite expensive. However, you can find ready-made drawings and instructions for manufacturing such wheels on the Internet, which will save money.
- Some simulators are quite large and suitable only for large rooms.
- Not all cats are ready to appreciate all the running wheel’s advantages immediately. The owner sometimes has to spend a lot of time accustoming a pet to the simulator.
Running cat wheels is not suitable for all cats. And it’s not always about the temperament of the animal. If the cat has any injuries or illnesses, training on the simulator may be unacceptable.
All running cat wheel has the same principle of operation. Ready-made models of simulators for cats primarily differ in size, manufacture, and appearance.
Cat Wheel can be of different diameters: small designs are designed only for kittens, and therefore, after the animal grows up, they will become unnecessary. Large exercise machines are more practical and will come in handy, especially if several cats are in the house.
As for the materials, they can be very different. The most commonly used are wood, plastic, and metal. Simple kitty models can also be made from cardboard. The most versatile option, in this case, is wood.
Let’s consider these options.
- The tree is originally an environmentally friendly material and will not cause allergies in the animal or other inhabitants of the house. Usually, wooden simulators are quite light and easily moved to a new place. Also, wooden models will fit well into almost any interior.
- Plastic wheels are lightweight and small. However, such designs cannot be called reliable and durable. They are quite unstable, and if any part of the simulator breaks, it will be extremely problematic to replace it.
- Metal models are the heaviest, but at the same time, they are stable and reliable. Moving the structure to a new location will be a little problematic. But the likelihood that the wheel will quickly fail is extremely small. Typically, such models are made to order or independently if you have experience with welding equipment.
- Cardboard wheels can hardly be called a full-fledged simulator. Such models are designed exclusively for kittens and cats of small breeds. With a high probability, animals will use the product for other purposes and, instead of training, they will prefer to tear off pieces of cardboard from it.
For the manufacture of several materials can be used at once. You can make a cat wheel of the desired size and characteristics at home.
As for the design, there are open and half-closed types of wheels. In open models, the cat wheel does not have sidewalls. Semi-closed options imply the presence of one partition. Available simulators rotate due to rollers mounted on a stand located under the wheel. The rotation mechanism is located on the side in closed models, so such simulators are considered more stable.
How to choose a cat wheel?
When choosing a running cat wheel, first of all, you need to consider the amount of free space in the apartment which can be allocated for the installation of the simulator. You also need to consider the number of cats in the house, their height, and weight. For many animals or large pets, massive, stable, semi-closed models are best suited.
Veterinarians recommend not using wheels with a diameter of less than one meter. The width of the track should not be less than thirty centimeters. Otherwise, the animal may injure the spine during exercise on small simulators.
When purchasing a finished model in a store, you must carefully examine the entire structure. A product made of poor quality materials or with poor fastenings can, at best, not last long and, at worst, cause injury to a pet.
The inner surface of the wheel must not be slippery. It is best if it is lined with carpet or felt. Exercise machines differ in appearance and can be of various colors so that you can choose the right option for any interior.
How to do it yourself?
Running wheels for cats are just beginning to gain popularity in Russia. The prices for such simulators are quite high, and it is not always possible to find a product in a small town. You can, of course, order a wheel in an online store, but then it will not be possible to pre-examine it for defects, and you will have to take the word of the seller or the description on the site.
You can make the simulator yourself if you have the necessary materials and tools. It won’t take long and won’t cost much. The easiest way is to make a wooden wheel. For its manufacture, the following materials and tools will be required:
- grinder for wood;
- thick sheets of plywood;
- carpet or felt;
- tape measure and rope;
- construction pencil;
- bolts and nuts;
- Miter saw;
- small wheels;
- building glue;
- wooden slats and bars;
- knife and drill;
First of all, on sheets of plywood, it is necessary to outline the boundaries of two circles, which will serve as a frame for the future simulator. The diameter of each should be at least one meter. Next, you need to cut out two circles and fasten them together at a distance of at least thirty centimeters with the help of bars.
The bars, in turn, are fastened to the plywood using a screwdriver, glue, or ordinary nails. The empty cavity between the circles must be closed, and this is done by gluing rails around the circumference of the wheel. The slats are pulled with a thick rope or belt to make the structure stronger.
When all the wheel elements are glued together, one or two sides will need to be cut out, depending on the type of future design. Next, you need to make a stand with wheels and attach it either to the sidewall of the drum or directly below it.
To make a stand, you will need two small pieces of plywood in the shape of a semicircle. A pair of rollers are installed on both sides, which will rotate the structure. For a semi-closed design, it is necessary to make a special axis for rotation and attach it to the sidewall of the wheel.
The finished wooden structure must be coated with a special compound that prevents rotting. The inner surface must be finished with felt or carpet. You can attach pieces of matter to double-sided tape, but the glue will be more reliable.
How to accustom an animal to a simulator?
Many cats are distinguished not only by activity but also by innate curiosity. These pets are happy to explore new items on their own. In this case, additional training to work on the simulator most likely, will not be required, and the cat will master the wheel itself.
However, not all domestic cats will be ready to take the running wheel initiative and will be reluctant to learn something new. Before you start any active actions and try to put your pet on the wheel, you need to give him some time to get used to the simulator. Let the animal independently approach the object and inspect and sniff it.
To draw attention to the wheel, you can put your cat’s favorite toys next to it or directly in it. You can lure your pet to the simulator using a laser toy. For the animal to take several steps inside the drum on its own, you can attach some toys to the side surface.
After the first movements of the wheel, the cat may get scared and run away. In no case should you sell your pet for this? Usually, within a week, the cat gets used to the simulator and willingly begins to use it. It is not necessary to expect and demand from an animal that it runs for a long time on a wheel since cats have nothing to do with hamsters or squirrels.
Do-it-yourself running wheel for cats
Depending on the breed, cats can be active or passive. Some sleep almost a day, only interrupted by food; others have a hunting instinct that makes them very active. Such cats need to throw out their energy daily. In small apartments, animals have nowhere to turn around, and the owners are unlikely to be delighted with an animal endlessly jumping on walls and windows. Therefore, for such pets, a running wheel is necessary.
Benefits of a running wheel
The simulator will be useful to a cat with any character. Energetic animals will be able to run enough in it, and calm ones will shake their fat a little. The problem of excess weight is especially acute in neutered and sterilized cats. The wheel will be an effective way to throw off a couple of extra pounds for them. The owner should remember that the obesity of the animal is also fraught with problems with the heart and joints, just like in humans. In addition, the pet will appreciate the original design of the wheel. He will like the lesson – depression will pass, and his mood will improve.
You can make a running wheel for cats with your own hands. Self-production will save not only a decent amount of money (from 10 to 25 thousand rubles) but also, as a result, get an original design that no one will have. However, before proceeding with purchasing materials, you should study the information about what the wheel should be like so that the cat likes it.
What you need to know about the running wheel
Making the “cat simulator” successful is not enough to have all the necessary tools and blanks. It is important that the cat likes the final design. To do this, it must meet the following requirements:
- Large wheel diameter. The cat will not have to bend its body unnaturally if the size of the circle allows it to keep its back straight. There are wheels with a height of 80 and 120 cm in pet stores, but this is not the limit. If a run in it is, for example, a Maine Coon, then the diameter of the wheel can be made even larger.
- Non-slip inner lining. If the cat’s paws constantly move out while running, she will soon get tired of this activity. In the best case, the animal will jump out of the simulator, and in the worst case, it can twist its paw. So carpet or felt will be an ideal covering.
- Wheel structure. If the cat is very active and reckless, then a running wheel with an inner wall is best. It will prevent the “flight” of the animal during the run and coordinate its trajectory of movements.
How to make a simulator yourself
There are many photos and videos with various DIY cat wheel options. This article will provide several steps by step instructions.
This option will be quite difficult for artisans who have never cut a bearing or installed rollers. More experienced artisans will be able to easily figure it out, as photos are posted as tips.
For work, you will need:
- Miter saw;
- bolt with nut;
- Double-sided tape.
The sequence of actions can be divided into seven stages:
- Foundation creation. Two circles are cut out of plywood with a radius of 46 cm, which will be the wheel’s base. They are interconnected with the help of bars.
- Rail manufacturing. Rails are glued around the end part. For greater strength, they are pulled together with straps.
- Roller installation. On two semicircular stands, two rollers are attached on both sides, on which the running wheel will subsequently be installed. It is due to them that the simulator will rotate.
- Wall installation. Another circle is cut out of plywood and glued to the support. In the future, a bearing will be attached to it.
- Axis placement. Since the running wheel rotates on an axle consisting of a bolt with a bushing, it is necessary to strengthen the insertion point to install it. A plywood square is glued on the backside of the wall, and gear is applied in front. A hole is drilled in the center.
- Stand manufacturing. It is made from support and bars made in the form of a rack. Two boards are fixed on it, in which bearings are installed.
- Track bonding. A strip is cut out of the carpet along the wheel’s width. It should be glued with double-sided tape.
This option assumes the presence of a welding machine, while the manufacturing algorithm is slightly simpler than the previous one. To make a running wheel for cats with your own hands, according to the instructions, you will need:
- steel profile;
- wooden barrel;
- fasteners and wrench;
- welding machine;
The sequence of actions consists of three stages:
- Creating a frame on which the wheel will be fixed. It is required to weld a rectangular frame from a steel profile to do this. Immediately on the long side, retreating 10 cm from the edge, weld the crossbar. To it, too, attach two racks for the hinge at an angle of 30-45 degrees.
- They are making the running wheel itself. Cut off part of the barrel. To prevent the boards from crumbling, they need to be fastened with bolts. Cut out the back wall for the drum from plywood. The circumference should be slightly smaller than the inner diameter of the narrow part of the barrel.
- Construction assembly. Attach the drum to the hinge so that it can turn freely. This should be done so that the wheel only rotates forward and backward and does not sway left and right.
Whether you make your cat treadmill or buy it from a specialized store, it needs to be securely fastened. This is important so that the cat does not overturn the structure and does not injure itself at the time of the jump.
If the running wheel is made by all the recommendations and is securely fixed in the house, you can be sure that it will become one of the mustachioed pet’s favorite places for active pastime.
Running wheel for cats
About how lazy cats are, legends are created, jokes are composed, and motivators are invented. Yes, they love to sleep. That’s a fact. But in their free time from dreaming, they are not averse to playing sports. After all, every kitten knows that a healthy feline spirit can only be in a healthy tailed-striped body. It is good if the desire for an active lifestyle in a pet is supported by its owner. And for example, he takes and gives his pet a real simulator – a running wheel for cats.
Who likes a cat trainer-running wheel?
It is no secret that cats of different breeds can differ diametrically. Some were bred to lie on the couch and favorably accept affection from their owners. In others, the hunting instinct of their ancestor’s burns, forcing them to move, run, jump and catch everything that catches their eye. The most mobile representatives of domestic cats are:
- Abyssinian cats;
- Balinese cats;
- Bengal cats;
- Kuril bobtails;
- Siamese cats.
To throw out energy and calmly curl up on the couch, these animals need to be very tired. Most city apartments are too small for them: two jumps from the windowsill to the door – is that serious?
Punishing such cats and limiting their mobility is quite dangerous: it can turn into serious illnesses for them. Buying a running wheel for cats is an excellent way out of this situation.
Trainer for active cats and cats
A good gift would be a cat simulator in the form of a running cat wheel for those caudate who are obese. Perhaps at first, they will not be easy. The training will be easy and short. However, when the weight begins to melt and the muscle corset gets a little stronger, they will become more intense.
Modern pet stores offer several models of cat trainers. As a rule, they differ in certain parameters:
- More often than others, there are wheels with an 800 and 1200 cm diameter. Of course, it is worth considering the size of the “athlete” himself. However, veterinarians advise not to save on extra centimeters. It will be much more comfortable for a cat wheel to run in a large wheel. He will not have to bend his body unnaturally, which will help keep the spine intact and avoid its curvature.
- Internal coating. Inside, the wheel should be lined with material to prevent the paws from slipping. It can be carpet, felt, or any other material. Otherwise, the cat-athlete can damage the paw if it breaks during exercise.
- Wheel structure. In some models of cat simulators, an inner wall is provided. She can play a big role if the cat is very active and reckless. Such an animal can even fly out of the wheel in the running. The wall will prevent such cases, allowing even the most dynamic animal not to interrupt the training.
How much does a pet trainer cost a cat wheel?
Cat lovers in the United States and Europe will need to spend a lot to ensure their pet has a healthy lifestyle. In these countries, the price of a running cat wheel for a cat is about 500$