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Cat treadmill exercise

cat treadmill

Bengal cats like this one have an exuberance of energy and readily take to an exercise wheel

More of us are keeping our cats indoors. Problem is many cats need lots of exercise and get frustrated cooped in our homes.  A cat treadmill can be an excellent way to solve this problem. According to cat behaviorist Pam Johnson-Bennett in her book Cat vs Cat:

…even though kittens seem to be able to play endlessly, many adult cats fall into the couch potato category. Since these feline couch potatoes gradually become less and less active, many owners don’t really notice the change until the annual veterinary exam when the cat is diagnosed as overweight. “Overweight? My Kitty? How did that happen?”

Well you can, and should, regularly play with your cat — though this normally fails to burn all the excess energy. Enter the cat treadmill — normally in the form of a giant exercise wheel.

Cat treadmill video (cat goes at amazing speed  towards the end)

That’s really exhausting exercise.

In the next video the cats go like crazy too — there is a bit of a pause in the middle where they have a bite to eat but after that one of them goes at warp speed.

A homemade cat treadmill also works well…

The cats seemed to be really enjoying themselves — true it doesn’t look anywhere near as good as the factory version.

Most cats will use a wheel like these. Some cats will take to them without hesitation. Some will need to be shown what to do using a toy. A cat that has been overweight awhile may need some extra encouragement and take longer to adapt. Please tell us what you think.


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  1. where can i get a cat exercise or treadmill? my cats are indoor ones and everyone of them is over weight. (3). this is something I think I can do for them and they could have fun with. tell me where to get one or send me instructions on making a safe one! thank you.

    • James Lautner, Senior Cats Editor

      Suzette — pleased you like this. I will putting up a couple of videos on making one later. They do seem to be quite expensive but I am looking at the options now and will get back to you very soon.

    • James Lautner, Senior Cats Editor

      Suzette, here are a couple of videos about building a DIY treadmill. Please let me know what you think and if either of these two would be feasible for you. I will keep looking for possibilities. Best regards James

  2. Oh WOW!!! I have 4 indoor cats 2 of which are Bengals and would love to see them on one of these. The cats really seemed to be enjoying themselves.

  3. My cat chases rolled up small paper balls and brings them back to me to throw again just like a dog,,,great but my sofa and chairs are filled underneath with stray or lost paper balls,,, haha just so long as he is happy and exercising,,,

  4. Mrs Louise Barrett

    Hi I wondered if you have managed to put up any videos on how to make the excercise wheel love the blog. Thank you Louise

  5. Wow! Where can I get the instructions on making a safe one for my three “Fat Cats” My sister & I are pretty hands on and could probably do it ourselves. Thanks for any help you can give me on this.

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