An exercise wheelSturdinessDiameterMax supported weight
Pet Running Machine for Small/Medium-Sized Dogs and CatsMade from PVC so it is very sturdy46 inches20-30 pounds
GOPET’s Tread WheelMade from commercial grade material so it is sturdy40 inches25 pounds
QSYY’s Treadmill Ferris WheelThe frame is made from hardwood so it has exceptional strength37 inches80 pounds
WYHmusic’s Cat TreadmillMade from a top-quality solid wood board which is sturdy and reliable39 inches176 pounds

Why you should buy a cat running wheel:

1. It helps with weight loss

Cat Exercise Wheels help to increase the metabolism of the animal and improve their muscle strength as well as movement. If you live in an area where you cannot let your cat out so that it can jump around and get a bit of activity then investing in the wheel will prove fruitful.

Although, if you think that your cat needs a proper weight loss program, then click here. It is a clinical review of all the different feline weight loss programs that are effective.

Read this article to find out if your cat is overweight. Also, please remember that cat wheel can is only a part of a complex weight-loss strategy that includes a proper weight-loss diet as well.

2. It helps to prevent diabetes in the cat

Diabetes usually occurs in older-aged cats and dogs. Physical exercise allows your animal to develop muscle strength and enhances the blood circulation around its body. This minimizes insulin resistance, reduces the risk of heart and respiratory diseases, enhances their immunity system, and regulates their digestive system.

A renowned Veterinarian Dr. Tara Koble discusses that after your pet’s diet, the most important factor that can help to prevent diabetes in your beloved feline is exercise. You need to keep them moving. She also mentions how indoor cats severely lack any activity as compared to street cats.

If you want more information about diabetes in animals, then click here.

3. It keeps your cat entertained

Cat exercise wheels are nothing but boring. There’s a huge variety of different models on the market. Some might have climbing steps, like the QSYY’s Treadmill Ferris Wheel and others might have a coating of particular materials, like the WYHmusic’s Cat Treadmill so that your cat can easily scratch and satisfy its entertainment needs using only a single product.

A cat tree with an exercise wheel

One dilemma that might be circling your mind is whether your cat will like the wheel or not. You might have even experienced an instance where your feline rejected a toy you excitedly bought for her.

So if you are worried about this issue, then we have a solution for you; Penn-Plax’s Spin Kitty Cat Exerciser Tree. It is a multi-functional product that comes not only with a sturdy wood structure that your cat can climb up to but it also has a small wheel on the side which can help you to determine whether it is worthy to buy a separate cat exercise wheel or not.

This particular Exercise Tree features sturdy wood construction with a sisal scratching post. The wheel is attached to the side and it has a diameter of 20 inches; which is great for a small-sized cat.

Furthermore, the wheel is layered with sisal and carpet on both sides for security and comfort.

If your cat gets used to this small version easily then you can purchase a full-sized cat exercise wheel in the future that has a diameter of around 40 inches or more. Otherwise, your cat will still enjoy its cat tree functionality.

How I researched and evaluated the exercise wheels for cats

1. I examined their sturdiness

First and foremost, you need to evaluate the sturdiness of a cat exercise wheel. Whether you are buying online or from a physical store, make sure to note the materials they are made from and how well they function.

This is important because there are many models in which the wheel may fall off the track or it might injure the cat. Thus, you should read reviews, in case of online shopping, or check the sturdiness yourself when buying from a physical store.

Of the four products that I analyzed in the above section, I tested three of them personally. So I had a chance to test its sturdiness more thoroughly.

2. I checked their size

The next thing that I checked was the dimensions of the units.

I emphasized this feature because a wheel that is smaller than the required size will affect your cat’s physique negatively.

The wheel can overload the feline’s back if it has a diameter of 48 in.

So, always make sure to check the size and more particularly, the diameter of the wheel.

A common thumb rule that most experts suggest is that the longer the cat, the bigger the diameter of the wheel.

3. I checked the max supported weight

Our pets are like our children and so, we want to keep their safety our number one priority. So, always check the maximum weight that the unit can easily withstand.

All you have to do is weigh your cat (or several cats) and compare heir weight with a maximum supported weight of a wheel.

The maximum supported weight should extend the weight of your cat(s) 1.5 times at least. You always want to leave a margin of safety to make sure your feline friend won’t get hurt.

How to train your cat to use an exercise wheel

Acclimating a cat to a new product; whether it is a new toy or a litter box, can be a difficult task. So if you are also struggling to get your cat to use the gadget, follow the following steps. These steps have been proven to be the most effective in habituating your feline to a wheel or any new product for that matter.

Find Your Cat’s Favorite Toy

Look around your cat’s toys and pick out the one that he adores the most. Then, place the toy near or over the wheel. Your cat will naturally follow it and get near the wheel without feeling as if it is being forced.

Though, maybe during the first few days, your cat might just pick it up and leave but continue doing this for as long as possible. The pet will gradually come to accept it and will start engaging with the wheel. He will jump on the wheel and figure out the exercise.

And if this does not happen immediately – don’t worry, just give him some extra time.

While some cats love treats and will probably be encouraged by small delicious treats, others are not easily amused. So let us talk about what to do in both cases:

1. For a cat that loves treats

Once he has started using the wheel, give him a treat immediately. This will make him think that it is good behavior and he will start playing in the wheel more often. However, make sure that you give him a treat after each time so that they can get used to it. Even if he is not running or walking on the wheel, do give him a treat.

The best tactic to make your cat run on the wheel is by holding the treats a bit higher on the stand. This will make him jump and reach out for it which in return will encourage him to run on the wheel.

2. For a cat that has a no-treat diet

If your cat does not get amused by treats, then use a laser pointer. Cats love chasing lasers so just point it a bit higher up the wheel so that he jumps or runs to catch it. Although, you need to make sure that the laser is never pointed directly towards his eyes. It is dangerous and might cause permanent damage to his small eyes.

One thing that you need to keep in mind is that cats need time to accept a new product or gadget. So the process will be very slow and steady. Be patient and allow your cat to sniff around and check out the wheel on their own. Eventually, they will start playing with it.

FAQ

Do cats use cat wheels?

A cat that has moderate to high levels of energy might become inclined towards the cat wheel much more easily as compared to the lazy ones. According to research, the cats that accept the wheel quickest are Toygers, Maine Coons, Bengals, Abyssinians, Egyptian Maus, Siamese, Russian Blues, and Savannahs.

Although this does not mean that the rest of the cat breeds will not accept it. Each cat is different and almost all of them require a bit of time and training before they can get used to using this gadget. So, be patient and try different techniques to familiarize them with the wheel.

At the end of the day

Cat wheels offer several benefits for cats; they enhance blood flow, muscle strength, mental stability, and much more. Furthermore, they help to keep your cat active and happy all the time. They are a great addition to toys, online games, and catios.

The above four products are our absolute favorites. However, if you do not fit your criteria, then make sure to note down the sturdiness, size, and maximum weight capacity before choosing a particular wheel for your feline partner.

Moreover, you need to give your cat time to accept the wheel. You can help them along the way by intriguing them by using different luring techniques; you can offer them treats, or place their favorite toy on the wheel. There are several different techniques that we already discussed above.

I’m Kimberly Baumgart, a future veterinary physician from Manhattan, Kansas. Volunteering in animal shelters and assisting in the local vet hospital, I help pet owners learn more about feline lifestyle. Read my works on Catpet.Club blog to discover the world of healthy nutrition and well-being for your four-legged friend.

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