As I headed out to the shed this afternoon, Southmoon was very intent on getting out to the patio.
Not being in any particular hurry, I figured I might as well put the harness on her and give her some safe, supervised patio time.
I had to expand the chest strap to maximum. And Southmoon's the slender one.
So I check Amazon for large cat harnesses. There's one that a customer review says is great for Maine Coons. Description says it fits 13" to 18" girth.
I get out the measuring tape, get Huckleberry to hold still for a moment, wrap the tape around his chest... just over 17".
And these critters are still growing.
Browsing further, I find a selection of vest/harness things that sound more promising than the basic nylon-strap harnesses... one of which is available in X-Large, which is just a little too big for Huckleberry... and none available in a size that'll adjust from the size the critters are now to the size they'll be when they're all growed up.
Best bet might be a medium-sized dog harness. (Medium-sized dog? Really? These cats are bigger than tiny dogs, but I'd call 'em more small-dog sized.)
In other cat-related news, the indoor air is currently so dry that petting a cat becomes a shocking experience. How can you tell if a cat has had enough petting? Throw it at the wall and see if it sticks!
Update: Stopped at the local pet-supply place this morning for supplies, and looked at harnesses. Strappy-type cat harnesses of the sort I have are supposed to be "one size fits all", for sufficiently mundane values of all. There are soft vest-style dog harnesses on offer, but the labels don't give much clue what size critter they'll actually fit.
Since the existing harness, if extended to maximum, does, just, fit around Huckleberry just aft of the forelegs, I guess the best approach might be to put it and a leash on him, and take him into the store for a fitting.
Update 2: Listings on Amazon are confusing. Looking at the official website for Kitty Holster, it appears that size M/L may in fact be right, unless they do a bunch more growing.
Update 3: Ordered a Kitty Holster, size M/L, in blue denim (the better to stencil "Seeing Eye Cat" on the sides; wouldn't go well with tiger stripes). Southmoon and Huckleberry think it should be a toy; Top Hat is afraid of it. After a couple of days, I get Huckleberry to hold still enough for me to affix the vest properly; it does seem to be the right size. He's not happy about it, but, after a few minutes on the patio with a leash attached, he starts to get the idea.
On returning indoors, I unfasten the neck closure; Huckleberry scoots off, rolls over, and starts pulling at the torso closure. It's like he's figured out how the Velcro works, and is determined to take it off himself. Gotta keep an eye on these critters!
In preparation for a gathering of the descendant*, and the cobwebs having gotten rather out of control, I bought a new Sessions** this morning, my old one having (1) gotten rather messed up some time ago, and (2) been left out on the patio.
When I picked it up this morning, Southmoon and Top Hat promptly fled. Huckleberry was cautiously inquisitive. I'll show him! Brandishing the Long-Handled Cat Tickler, I tickled the cat for a while.
This, it seems, was a mistake. When I then proceeded to tickle the cobwebs, Huckleberry was dashing around trying to get to where the tickleball was, in Maximum Play Mode.
Now, if I could just teach him to jump up into the high corners and sweep up the cobwebs with his fur....
* All one of her.
** Or that other name that comes up as an autosuggest after "FBI director William"***.