Laser Pointers.. are they good or bad? - Page 2 - Cat Forum : Cat Discussion Forums
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post #11 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-02-2013, 01:56 PM
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I agree with Susan. Mine are so old that they tire out after a few minutes. Just don't point it in to their face - especially their eyes. Be sure and teach kids NOT to do that!!!
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post #12 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-02-2013, 02:25 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks, everyone for the replies!!

They were completely engaged for the full hour, so maybe that was a little bit long. I will try it for shorter periods of time then throw in another game such as their "brain teaser" where they have to get the treat out of the toy (the kitten caught on quickly, Moosey, not so much, but she was smart enough to follow Zigs around and pick up the treats that fell out).

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post #13 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-02-2013, 02:55 PM
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I'd be afraid that Midnight, the wild cat would be more familiar with laser. I'm so old we had coincidence rangefinders in the tanks. What if he used the laser to have me put out more food for him?

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post #14 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-02-2013, 03:02 PM
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Agree with Susan and the others: depends on the cat. Ritz kind of likes it but I always felt bad that there is no 'reward' like there is with DaMouse. So after playing with the laser for a while, I bring out DaMouse or a similar toy. I have recently bought a remote control mouse/laser, haven't used it yet, but has the reward.
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post #15 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-02-2013, 05:10 PM
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The trick to it working without driving them nuts, IMO, is two simple things.

1. A defined start and end. I always say 'All done.' when I'm done playing any sort of game with our cats, and now they know that means that mummy is done and they need to go find something else to amuse them. That being said I don't get them all crazy riled up and leave them that way, I play until they're tired and then give them toys they like to play with by themselves if they still want to run a bit. You have to be fair, but if you're consistent about not starting again once you've said you're done they will eventually get it.

2. Give them something tangible when you're done. I always either toss them a toy where the red dot was last, or toss a treat there. That way they 'caught' it and can feel some satisfaction.

NEVER EVER EVER make the dot run under the couch, or the tv stand or whatever and then put it away. They'll sit there for ever waiting for the dot to come back out...that's how you create obsession and it just isn't fair to your pets.

Have a defined end, and give them something to chomp their frustration out on when you're done. As long as you do that you won't have any problems at all.

Becky and the cats: Jitzu (11), Torri (9), Doran (8 ), and Muffin (8 )
The boys at 8 - not lol
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post #16 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-02-2013, 05:12 PM
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My cats love the laser pointer! I think it is a really good way to give them plenty of fun and exercise (and kind of practice hunting skills!), and provides plenty of entertainment for me Both of the cats accept that the game is over once the dot disappears though. I think it becomes unsafe when they continue to look for the dot all the time and become obsessed about it.
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post #17 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-02-2013, 05:41 PM
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MowMow knows where the dot comes from and could care less. If I *REALLY* work the the light he can be enticed to smack at it a few times but it's not worth the effort. He looks more annoyed than anything else.

Shepherd Book... his brain leaks out his butt and he loses what little sanity he has left when that dot appears. He will slam into walls face first, jump of impossibly high things, and try to make leaps that are just crazy stupid so I try to use it sparingly with him. (That was all found out by accident, I didn't TRY to get him to hurt himself). He DOES look for the dot for a while after I put it away but it's not freaky obsessive and he gives up after a bit.

If he's being really obnoxious and won't give MowMOw or myself any peace I'll pull it out and get him racing at top speed back and forth across the apartment. I keep that up until he's panting then let him rest. Repeat that 4 or 5 times and he naps quietly on his own and leaves us alone..... I don't let anyone else use it with him though. As I said, he does crazy stupid stuff trying to catch that dumb dot and I worry he'll hurt himself badly if the person isn't paying attention.
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post #18 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-02-2013, 07:14 PM
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I use the laser pointer thing occasionally for short periods only. My cats ignore it after awhile. You might want to try a variety of toys, such as the mylar or leather tassles on a string or wand, and da-bird. Different cats have different preferences for prey/toys.
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post #19 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-02-2013, 07:21 PM Thread Starter
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These cats are spoiled. We already had cat toys left over from my roommate's girlfriend's cat who lived with us for a while. They have about 10 different mice, a few wands, balls and other little things. Plus, I just bought them those "brain teasers" where they have to figure out how to get the treat out of the ball. They LOVE hair-ties.

I guess I don't HAVE to play with the red dot, but they do seem to like it. I will make sure to throw something else in the mix to distract them.

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post #20 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-05-2013, 10:56 PM
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Originally Posted by Susan View Post
I can't imagine ever going a full solid hour with the laser. My cats would get bored...and if they didn't, I certainly would! That said, I don't see any issues with using a laser pointer for short periods of time, if the cats enjoy it. It's good exercise for them. I tend to follow up the laser game with another game that actually allows them to catch something, such as Da Bird.

May i ask what is Da bird?
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