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Cats live longer, happier lives indoors, but that doesn’t mean they can’t experience the great outdoors safely. Some cats can be trained to walk outside with a leash and harness. But some kitties don’t like leashes. And then there are disabled and senior cats like my Toby, who has severe arthritis—they still want to get out and socialize. Cat strollers are the perfect solution.
Designed to keep your cat securely enclosed, cat strollers let you take your cat with you on a walk without worrying about their safety. You can find a good, basic cat stroller for a bit more than $50, or invest in a full-featured, deluxe model (those can run as much as $300). There’s even one stroller that converts into a kitty backpack!
Whether you want to do serious traveling with your cat or simply want to get out for some fresh air without leaving your kitty at home, you can find a cat stroller that will meet your needs.
What to Look For in a Cat Stroller
Cat strollers are designed to let your cat experience the world outside while keeping them safe. The best pet strollers are ones that are both comfortable for your kitty and easy to use and maintain for you (and for anyone else in your household who will be taking the cat for a stroll). Here are some features to consider when evaluating a stroller:
- Wheel stability and durability. Will you be walking on smooth sidewalks or jogging on a variety of challenging terrains?
- Type and location of stroller openings. Do you prefer to put your cat in from the top, the back, or the front?
- Durable mesh visibility panels. Do you want to be able to see your pet from the top while you are walking? Can your pet easily see out?
- Storage features. Some strollers have convenient cup holders and/or baskets underneath, others just have a pocket or two.
- Secure closures. Do you need zippers with locks?
- Water-resistant materials. Some strollers are highly water-resistant, and a few come with PVC rain covers.
- Wheel quality. They should roll freely but lock in place when stopped.
- Handle comfort. On some strollers, you can adjust handle height and position.
- Storability. Most strollers fold up. Some do this more easily than others.
- Airline-approved. A stroller is an easy way to get your pet through an airport and onto a plane; some have a carrier that can be detached from the stroller frame and tucked under your seat.
- Materials. How easy is it to clean the stroller if your pet has an accident?
A good stroller will give your cat plenty of room to sit, stand, stretch, and lay down comfortably. You’ll want space to add a cat bed or blanket, although some stroller models come with a soft surface built-in. Finally, look for a stroller that rolls smoothly so your cat won’t get bounced around.
It’s important that the stroller fits your needs as well as your kitty’s. Makes sure it is comfortable for you to push (when loaded with your cat), and to store or collapse when traveling. Check the stroller’s weight and structural materials. You want it to be light enough to be easy to push, but heavy enough to be stable and durable.
The 10 Best Cat Strollers
There are dozens of strollers on the market. We’ve picked one or two of the best from each of the top brands, so you can choose from multipurpose stroller/backpack/carriers, lightweight strollers, heavy-duty strollers, and all-terrain jogging strollers.
People love this big three-wheel all-terrain stroller, especially because the price has come down considerably. It features large bike-style tires that are great for handling uneven ground like lawns and gravel. The handle heights are adjustable to making jogging and walking more comfortable. If you add the separate PVC rain cover, you can take your kitty out even in the rain. This jogging stroller has no cup holders but it does have pockets for water bottles.
- Folds flat, and large wheels remove for easy transport and storage
- Wheel brakes are easy to lock using a rear pedal
- Supports pets up to 60 pounds
- Peek-a-boo top window lets you see your cat
- Weight: 24.64 pounds
- Comes in two colors
This streamlined version of the Petique stroller has four wheels (the front wheels are set close together for easy navigation and swivel 360 degrees). Fabric can be removed for gentle washing and air drying.
- Supports small pets up to 35 pounds—so two cats would not be a problem.
- One-hand folding mechanism makes storage easy and efficient
- Front wheels swivel and lock when needed
- Weight: 17.6 pounds
- Comes in several colors
This is one of the most popular pet strollers available online—and affordable compared to many other cat strollers on the market. With durable mesh for airflow and visibility, made of water-resistant Oxford cloth, this is an all-weather cat stroller. Each compartment has a zippered mesh screen window so you can easily take your cat in and out. We think this lightweight stroller is a great choice if you are going to stick to sidewalks and pavement—note that some reviews mentioned that the wheels are not durable on more difficult surfaces.
- No tools required; collapses for convenient storage and transportation
- Spacious undercarriage storage for your on-the-go supplies
- Wheels rotate 360 degrees for easy turning
- Weight: 12.98 pounds
- Comes in a few colors
This pet stroller accommodates up to 60 pounds, so you can stroll with two cats at once. The zipper-free design features an easy-lock latch that you can operate one-handed, while the canopy can be positioned in several different ways to allow your cat a good view and plenty of shade. With safety breaks, shock absorbers, and tightly woven water-resistant materials, this cat stroller can handle all types of walking conditions.
- Padded ergonomic handle; storage basket underneath stroller
- Easy-fold mechanism enables you to fold up the stroller with just one hand
- Weight: 27 pounds
The PetLuv three-in-one stroller looks less like a stroller than a pet carrier on wheels. Use it on the lightweight steel stroller frame for scenic walks. Or remove the crate from the frame and add the adjustable, padded straps to hand-carry it to the vet. You can even buckle it into your car for travel. However you use it, this soft-sided crate has tons of space for your cat to feel comfortable.
- Top, front, and side panels zip open for easy access
- Ventilated mesh doors lock securely and are coated for easy cleaning
- A large side pocket holds water, treats, harness, etc.
- Frame fully collapses for storage
- Weight: 8.7 pounds
Small but mighty, this lightweight stroller makes taking your cat out for a walk an absolute breeze. The overhead canopy is easily adjustable to shelter your kitty from the sun or to manage visibility. Your cat will enjoy a smooth ride, and you’ll enjoy the easy-to-handle and easy-to-store construction. Note that this lightweight model has only basic underneath storage to carry anything additional.
- This compact stroller accommodates 44 pounds—perfect if you have two cats
- Good suspension and construction
- Weight: 13.2 pounds
This model from Gen7Pets has all the features you need, from smooth-running wheels to plenty of nicely secured storage space. Folds flat for storage and assembles easily without tools.
- Holds up to 25 pounds
- The top tray holds two cups and the enclosed bottom basket keeps your stuff secure
- Front wheels swivel on flat surfaces but can be locked for rough terrain
- Weight: 15 pounds
- Comes in three colors
This airline-approved premium cat stroller features an ergonomic, lightweight design and convenient one-hand controls for folding and unfolding. A great choice if you are doing a lot of traveling with your cat.
- Includes two washable pads
- Retractable towing handle for easy maneuverability
- Compact enough to fold into an airplane overhead bin or into the trunk of a small car
- Three organizer pockets and a large basket underneath
- Weight: 15 pounds
This three-wheeled cat stroller is lightweight and sturdy. It has a roomy interior, a hooded peak-top window so your cat can have a great standing view, and two secure zipper access points so you can take your pet in and out. A cup holder and a large undercarriage storage compartment let you bring along the gear you need.
- Rear security breaks keep the stroller steady when parked
- Front and back ventilated mesh screen windows give your cat plenty of airflow and visibility, while keeping bugs out
- Retractable, waterproof rain hood (and sun shield) keeps kitty sheltered
- Weight: 15.8 pounds
It’s a cat stroller. It’s a cat carrier. It’s a cat backpack. It’s a car seat and wheeled carrier, too! This stylish five-in-one convertible cat transportation vehicle lets you go from neighborhood walks to cross-country flights with ease. As a stroller, it’s easy-riding and easy to maneuver with a 360-degree swiveling front wheel. The smooth zippers and large opening make it easy to put your cat in and out of the main compartment, and the mesh windows and perforated holes give them plenty of ventilation. Plus, the stroller has a large mesh basket for storage.
- Easy-to-understand instructions for switching between the five functions
- The stroller frame has a telescopic handle to suit different heights
- Use as a stroller for walks, or rolling pull-along carrier for easy transportation to the vet or groomer
- Convert to backpack or shoulder carrier with comfortable padded straps
- The comfortable inner padding is removable and machine washable
- Weight: 15.6 pounds
- Comes in multiple colors
Introducing Your Kitty to a Cat Stroller
Before you head out for your first walk, let your cat spend some time getting used to the stroller. Start by setting it up in your home (put on the brakes) and let your cat check it out for a few days. (You can make the stroller more appealing by placing treats on it or even by feeding your cat in the stroller.)
It may take your cat several days, or even weeks, to adjust to the stroller. Don’t rush it! Just let them get used to it in their environment. With any luck, your cat will be treating the stroller as a bed soon enough.
From there, start taking short practice trips around the house. Remember to reward your cat for riding with lots of treats and praise. Once they’re used to the movement, you can head outdoors—first for short outings, then for longer ones.
Some people like to use a cat harness and leash as a backup safety measure. The harness and leash can also help with potty breaks if you end up walking for a long time. It’s unlikely your cat will need to potty on a short stroll, but be prepared and keep an eye out for discomfort. Most strollers come with washable pads, and you can always add a liner if you are concerned.
If your cat shows any signs of stress or discomfort, head home. And be patient. It may take a few weeks, but your kitty will start looking forward to their stroller outings.
Featured image by jeongmin park/Pixabay