After having success indoors, I decided it was time for Malloy the reenter the outside world, but this time with a little more precaution…
We are outside with him! This morning (Tuesday) felt right…so before I could change my mind I got him in the harness and riding comfortably around the apartment. Without hesitation I opened the door and took a step outside. Malloy stayed very calm…in fact, his calmness blew me out of the water. I was expecting him to thrash around and try to sneak out the side flaps (there are two sections in the “hood” of the stroller that flap open and some users reported their cats being able to sneak out), but he sniffed around, took in all his surroundings and stayed very close to me towards the back of the stroller. Dan helped me with one end of the stroller and we lifted him down the stairs. Again, Malloy was so calm and unaffected we decided to make our way around the complex.
We took it pretty slow and I made sure to talk calmly to him the entire time, making sure he knew he was safe and loved. He stayed near me in the back of the stroller for most of the walk but he was very attentive, looking around at the cars and people, and tensing at the CRUNCH of each dead leaf as we rolled over them. The wheels on this particular stroller are plastic and not very durable so the ride was quite bumpy, but he didn’t panic once and never tried to get out.
We wanted to keep the first walk short just to give him a sense of the stroller without overwhelming him, but I think by the end he was enjoying the ride, just not the weather. I guess he will be wearing that new sweater I got him next time! Since we’ve been back he has been in and out of the stroller on his own and has been sniffing around.
I feel very excited for this big step and for what’s to come next. With a walk everyday and constant encouragement and reassurance, I think Malloy will be an outdoor expert in no time!