THE QUEST TO CURTAIL the killer cat continues with the addition of a ‘CatBib’
The ‘CatBib’ has arrived and already, it has curtailed the killer cat.
The concept is not exactly rocket science. Made out of a sort of lightweight rubbery fabric, it attaches to the cat’s collar by means of Velcro. Invented by a ‘bird-feeding, cat lover’ in Springfield, Oregon, USA, the device seems to be doing the trick.
The bib’s success is explained thus: “it works by gently interfering with the cat’s precise timing and co-ordination skills needed for successful bird hunting. The ‘CatBib’ is broad at the bottom and so when the cat lifts its paws to catch the bird, it simultaneously lifts the ‘CatBib’ which is then between the cat and the bird. It works by using the simple principle of ‘getting in the way’.
And get in the way it does. Fortunately, Dexter was quite accustomed to a collar but the addition of a bib did not exactly have him meowing with excitement; quite the contrary. At first, he required two people to attach the foreign object and after several days, still shows rather robust resistance when we approached him wielding the said bib.
I am pleased to report, however, that once ‘bibbed up’, his first foray into hunting was rather dismal. His killer moves were somewhat impeded by the blue and purple apparition hanging from his collar. Rather than moving with stealth, he developed a rather pronounced march—a bit like a snow leopard negotiating thick, powdery snow.
As the days progress, he is showing slightly less rebellion when having the bib attached and instead, seems to have acquired an attitude of snooty resignation.
I wouldn’t say he’s sulking, but he’s definitely miffed. The bumph that came with the bib did warn of some cat tricks:
”Sulking is one of the greatest of the cat’s tools for making the owner remove the ‘CatBib’. Locking your cat indoors if he sulks is an effective training method. He will soon associate the ‘CatBib’ with going outside.”
The inventor even provides testimonials: This, from ‘Phillip, Meshoppen, PA’: “The birds and chipmunks are very happy now that Louie has his ‘CatBib’. He even waits at the door for his bib because he knows the bib means OUT TIME!”
Or this from Robert in New Zealand: “Barney was pulling in several birds a week until we got his ‘CatBib’ on. We have not seen any more killing since. He still manages to race around and climb trees so the ‘CatBib’ doesn’t hinder him at all, and he loves to get a good neck scratching when we take his collar off at night.”
There is even some scientific evidence provided. According to Murdoch University, Perth, WA, School of Biological Sciences and Biotechnology, the bib stopped 81% of cats from catching birds, 45% from catching mammals and 33% from catching herptofauna (an area of zoology covering the study of amphibians and reptiles).
While this data is impressive, unfortunately, I do think Dexter would still catch one of our pet Silkies if given the opportunity to do so. He stalks them with a steely resolve, bib and all and had I not resorted to squirting him with the hosepipe, I have no doubt he would be tucking into a cockerel by now.
And then, I fear, the bib would indeed have other uses …
PS … the ‘CatBib’ is undoubtedly a runaway success in the true sense of the word. It has gone, you see, together with accompanying collar and bell. It no doubt lies hooked on some fence deep in the bushland surrounding our home. Timeously, the ‘Liberator Cat Collar’, another online purchase promising success in curtailing killer cats, has arrived at our front door in a promising package.
However, it is proving not to be s after all.
The ‘Liberator Cat Collar’ is designed to send off a signal whenever our natural born killer lurches to attack. Birds are said to scatter when they hear it’s finely tuned beep.
It sits quite snugly on a comfortable collar and there were no protests when we activated the device.
Days went by and our ruse seemed to be working. And then beautiful, angelic looking Dexter emerged one fine morning with another bird flapping weakly in his mouth. He gave me one defiant look before disappearing into the bush with his booty.
So it seems the ‘Liberator Cat Collar’ is not so bird liberating after all. Our cat is a killer and that’s that. We have resorted once again to a bell – three bells, actually. We have exhausted every avenue. Short of caging him for good, the bells will have to suffice.
It’s a case of ding dong bell, Pussy’s on the prowl …
© 2011 Lois Nicholls