Walkies! Sheffield’s adventure cat goes on hikes and bike rides with owner

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A dog-like adventurous cat has been enjoying hikes and bike rides with its owner – and will soon be going on camping trips too.

Kyle Kana’iaupuni Robertson, who lives in Meersbrook, got his cat Pōhaku in March last year.

Pō, as he calls his cat for short, is a Russian Blue Ragdoll and spends every day with his owner.

Mr Robertson, 31, said: “I am not sure which one of us is more co-dependent, but he is always in the same room as me. I picked the roundest, fluffiest and cuddliest cat, but he is also quite dog-like. I didn’t teach him to play fetch but he taught me how to play fetch with him instead.”

Pōhaku’s name leads back to Mr Robertson’s Hawaiian roots and the word has a sacred connotation in the culture.

His adventures started small with lead-training in Mr Robertson’s garden and quickly evolved to walks in nearby Meersbrook park either on a lead or in a carrier backpack. 

The proud cat-dad said: “Pō was pretty brave to begin with and wanted to climb all the trees and I had to hold him back, since he would just climb up and not know how to get down. Then he just started to get a bit bored with that, because it’s just a wide, open space. There’s not much to look at.

“But it wasn’t until he finally climbed out of the backpack and got on my shoulder that I was like, ‘Oh, wow, we can actually kind of venture out a bit more’.”

The trips to the Peak District were carefully planned, so that Pōhaku could roam lead-free without any hazards nearby. 

Whenever any dogs or other potentially threatening things meet the adventure duo on their walks, Pōhaku finds refuge on his owner’s shoulder, where he sits like a parrot.

When on walks, a lot of people still give the cat and his owner puzzled looks. He said: “A lot of people say that it seems so unnatural to take my cat on walks and ask if the cat actually takes to the lead, but show me a dog that didn’t need lead training?” 

The process of finding what works for Pō required a lot of trial and error.

Mr Robertson said: “He’s not very treat-driven, so that never worked. It was kind of just testing things out and just being quite vigilant and seeing if he was up for certain things, but I wouldn’t ever actually take him out of the bag unless he wants to come out by himself. It’s always open and I got him on a lead anyways, just in case, but lately he’s graduated a bit more from that to go without it.”

For Pōhaku’s first birthday in January, his human dad took him a bike ride through the peaks and at one point the brave cat actually stood on his owner’s shoulder while he was riding the bike and leaned into the wind.

The adventurous cat had a hard time in winter, since the weather wasn’t ideal for long walks outside.

His owner said: “He got a bit feisty. I don’t let him out on his own as I live on a busy road with lots of cars and I’m convinced he’s too friendly so would get stolen.

“I think the scale of his adventures are yet to be properly pushed.”

He recently got a van and wants to take Pōhaku on camping trips soon.

“He’s the best little guy. The dream is to be camping with him on a nice day, have the van’s doors thrown open and we’re just both chilling in the sun. Maybe playing fetch? One day I would like to take him to the beach, see how that goes.”

Recently, Mr Robertson tried to look for other cat walkers in the area, so Pō could make some furry friends. He hopes to inspire more cat owners in South Yorkshire to take their cats on adventures.

You can follow Pōhaku’s adventures here

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