Cats have a wide variety of toy options while browsing in a pet store. From spin tracks, colored mice, and feather wands all the way to self-moving gadgets that make sound. Of all the toys found in the pet store, none are more debatable than the laser pointer. Is it fun or just inhumane?
Cats Are Hunters
Cats are natural hunters. They not only hunt for food but they hunt for fun as well. Observing the wide variety of options in a pet store, you will see that there are all kinds of hunting toys designed to attract your cat and make play-hunting fun. One of the most rewarding times a cat has is when they finally catch the pray. They may choose to bat-it around again, chew on it, or simply lay on it as if it were an egg they wanted to hatch.
So What Is the Deal with Laser Pointers Then?
It is basically an office tool turned cat toy. What I would like to point out is that it is more fun for you to watch your cat chasing this red dot, than it is for them to be hunting it. When a cat hunts, they expect to be rewarded by catching something. If there is nothing to catch, what is the reward?
Lets set up a scenario here – You are a 10-year-old boy who just got a brand new ball to play with outside. You take it out to play catch with your friends, but they continue to throw it back and forth at a height you can’t possibly catch it. What happens then? You become upset, frustrated, angry, and eventually, don’t want to play ball anymore.
When you use a laser pointer to play with your cat, you are not actually playing but “teasing” them. Do you like to be teased? I do not think so. Cats will often become discouraged and even depressed if they are feeling as if they are unskilled hunters.
The act of hunting is embedded in their DNA and catching pray is the difference between survival and death. So yes, based on a cat’s natural instincts, a laser pointer is inhumane. You will not catch me buying one for my cats.